Canadian songstress Romina Di Gasbarro is very enjoyable to listen to. It is her training in both voice and guitar that makes her music so magical. Like her English counterpart Sarah Brightman, Romina Di Gasbarro spent time in operas before she decided to start recording other things besides operatic music. And like Brightman, Romina has focused on pop music. But unlike Brightman, Romina’s pop music also contains a very large amount of jazz feeling in its sound. You will also find that instead of redoing old “standards,” Romina Di Gasbarro has decided to create her own songs for her albums. Romina Di Gasbarro is currently promoting her 2010 album entitled Poema.

Poema from Romina Di Gasbarro begins with the track “Corner of Heaven”. The beautiful voice of Romina and her guitar make up the main part of the track as guitarist David Occhipinti and bassist Andrew Downing help create the rest of the track. The results create a simple song that has an almost endless beauty in its sound.

“In the Spin” is one of the simplest tracks on the newest release from Romina Di Gasbarra. The guitars and bass are used sparingly on the track to create a simple backing track for Romina’s vocals. The vocals and music on the track are both based in soft jazz music and the vocals and music seem to complement each other well.

One of the strongest tracks on Poema from Romina Di Gasbarro is the song “Love Life Sentence”. The jazz and R&B stylings in this song bring to mind the track “Inner City Blues” from Marvin Gaye. Along with the two songs sharing a sound in their music, they both have similar ideas in their lyrics; though one (“Love Life Sentence”) is more about love and the other (“Inner City Blues”) is more about life. Both songs are written in a way that will you want to sing along. Romina’s soulful voice on “Love Life Sentence” goes well with the subject of the track. The strings on the track also add just the right amount of texture to the music. And the addition of a section of the aria “Vesti la giubba” from Ruggero Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci at the end of the track sung by tenor opera singer (and instructor) Francesco Pellegrino brings a little of Di Gasbarro’s opera background onto her album.

For the fourth track on her album, Romina Di Gasbarro goes in a slightly different direction than with any of the other tracks on the release. The song “Wild, Wild Animal” features a strong lounge music sound. In fact, with its strings and electric guitar, this track sounds as if it would have fit in with the rest of the lounge music resurgence that happened in the early 1990s. “Wild, Wild Animal” from Romina Di Gasbarro would fit right alongside “The Millionaire’s Holiday” by Combustible Edison. This song is the track on the album where Romina Di Gasbarra gets to show off her voice just a little: While listening to this track, you’ll hear Di Gasbarro’s operatic range shine through; and when she hits the high notes of the song, you’ll understand the true talent of this singer.

Perhaps the most heartfelt song on the release is the track “Scent of your Pillow”. The nylon guitar from Romina Di Gasbarro, double bass and cello from Andrew Downing, violin from Aisslin Nosky and viola from Karen Moffat combine to create a heartbreaking plea set to music. Di Gasbarro sings this song with a lot of passion and emotion. This ends up being one of the showcase pieces on the album, as well as one of the longer tracks.

The shortest track of the release, “Rain,” is a track that features percussion that make a rain-like effect leading to a jazz sound that features a little classical feel to it. The easy pace of the song can make you imagine a nice, slow day that just begs to be enjoyed while doing nothing….. except maybe taking a walk.

This release from one of North America’s most talented artists is well worth the 40+ minutes that make up its running time. Each of the beautifully written and arranged songs that appear on Romina Di Gasbarro’s 2010 release Poema brings her talent to life. While listening to the album, you get to enjoy, not only Di Gasbarro’ beautiful voice, but her guitar playing as well; proving that Romina Di Gasbarro is more than just a singer with a beautiful voice.

  1. […] releases I heard all year. That is why I am including it on this “Best Of” list. CLICK HERE FOR COMPLETE […]

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