Amore is Mark Rotellas celebration of the Italian decadethe years after the war and before the Beatles when Frank Sinatra, Perry Como, Dean Martin, and Tony Bennett, among others, won the hearts of the American public with a smooth, stylish, classy brand of pop. In Rotellas vivid telling, the stories behind forty Italian American classics (from O Sole Mio, Night and Day, and Mack the Knife to Volare and I Wonder Why) show how a glorious musical tradition became the sound track of postwar America and the expression of a sense of style that we still cherish.
Rotella follows the music from the opera houses and piazzas of southern Italy, to the barrooms of the Bronx and Hoboken, to the Copacabana, the Paramount Theatre, and the Vegas Strip. He shows us the hardworking musicians whose voices were to become ubiquitous on jukeboxes and the radio and whose namessome anglicized, some nothave become bywords for Italian American success, even as they were dogged by stereotypes and prejudice.
Amore is the personal Top 40 of one proud son of Italy; it is also a love song to Italian American culture and an evocation of an age that belongs to us all.