Marco CarenaView in iTunes
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Born in the northern Italian city of Turin in 1957, Marco Carena didn't adhere to the standard rules of singer/songwriterhood, choosing instead to perform in a theatrical, cabaret-esque style, writing parodies of popular Italian songs or his own tongue-in-cheek originals. After winning 1990's "Sanscemo Festival" ("scemo" meaning "fool"), a play on the popular annual Sanremo Festival, at which he participated the following year, Carena released his debut album, Serenata (Il Meglio Di...), with Il Ritorno coming in 1991 and Ciao Paese in 1993. Though he didn't release any solo work for the next decade, Carena was still heavily involved in the Piedmont arts scene, collaborating with local musicians, producing records, and appearing on-stage and on television. In 2001 he started Marco Carena & Prostat+, a group of aging rockers dedicated to "gerontorock," playing rearranged and reinterpreted versions of classic songs. The band issued Frittomix in 2004, but two years later the singer was back on his own with Ciao Turin, which took on popular folk songs from his hometown. In 2007 Discountautore, a CD/DVD set recorded live in one of Turin's most famous clubs, Cab41, came out. ~ Marisa Brown