Daniele “Bengi” Benati: The Face of Funk-Soul Italiano

I just recently produced a video for That’s Amore Music. That’s Amore specializes in “Authentic Italian Music” production music for tv, film, commercials, etc. That’s Amore is affiliated with Flippermusic, a large production music network located in Rome and Milan.

The latest release by That’s Amore is Little Italy, which celebrates the Italian-American vibe along the lines of a style alla Louis Prima. It swings. This tune – Nuova York – is dedicated to the Big Apple:

I’ve produced a few videos for That’s Amore. One of the label’s founders (along with Fabio di Bari) is Daniele Benati. Benati, who originally hails from Lombardy Italy,  wears many hats: prolific songwriter, singer, musician, producer and promoter.

In the early 1990s Daniele  formed the band Ridillo, who had twice won the Japan-based international music competition, Yamaha Music Quest. In 1996 Ridillo released their first album and enjoyed success in Italy, not only headlining their own concert tours, but opening for acts like Earth, Wind and Fire and James Brown.  While Ridillo play funk-soul italiano, they cover other genres as well. (Tom Jones!) The band continues to record and perform, even touring with legendary Italian singer Gianni Morandi.

You can check out more Ridillo on iTunes!

Aside from Ridillo, Daniele also works on collaborations and solo projects. In 2007 he released a solo album under the nom-de-plume Benji Jumping and had a hit with his screamingly fun, Ice Cream Pusher.

His most recent release, 2014’s Faccia da Soul (Face of Soul) had a number of hits including Bel Tramonto (Beautiful Sunset), L’Estate Sta Finendo (Summer is Ending) and the beautiful, bittersweet Vanoni:

Daniele is a man of many talents, not the least of which he is a husband and father. I have never had the pleasure of meeting him in person. I hope to one day. We have only ever communicated via Facebook and other social networks. Through his many posts, one is able to see Daniele as a friendly, positive, energetic and tireless performer, producer and promoter, constantly creating, composing, performing, recording and plugging his numerous projects be they concerts, collaborations or recording sessions.

The music business is a tough racket, especially in these less-than-lucrative days of iTunes and Spotify. But this does nothing to dim Daniele’s passion and enthusiasm for his band and his music.

Here are a few other videos I have had the pleasure of producing for Daniele and That’s Amore:

From Italiani Paparazzi Vol. 2

  From Spaghetti Western

From Arrivederci Italia

From Fellini’s Rome