Sunday, May 18, 2008


A tale of two Rossis

I never associated the name of wartime crooner Tino Rossi with Corsica until I discovered quite recently that he was born in Ajaccio. Born of a humble background in 1907, he became a star of both the gramophone and the American film industry and was a superstar of his time. His colourful life is chronicled in the March 2008 issue of Corsica Bullitinu: if you want a copy of the issue containing Robert Sharp’s excellent article about him I suggest you drop a note to the editor Mac McKeone (mac @

To be quite frank, Tino Rossi’s music never really appealed to me though his voice has a clarity and purity of tone that won over many hearts when he was in his prime. However, I learnt of another Rossi with Corsican connections just this week, and I find his music a good deal more to my taste.

Doc Rossi is an Italo-American instrumentalist, and he will soon be giving a concert in Corsica. In his blog, he is described as “…the foremost expert on the English guitar or cetra.” I’ve heard of a cittern, which he also plays, but never until now had I heard of a cetra. He performs across North America and Europe as a soloist and with several groups, playing early music and Irish and American traditional music. It is Corsica’s turn on June 14th, where he performs at Casa Giafferi.

If you can’t get to Corte on that day (I’m afraid I won’t be able to give you a report as I will be on the other side of a mountain range in the Balagne then) you can hear a sample of his work at Enjoy.

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