The advance of the American and African culture in the post-war period as well as the political and cultural changes brought in Italy a series of contaminations that developed in the Neapolitan music scene in the 70s. Italy, especially the South of Italy, has always been a place of contaminations. In this case we are talking about musical influences that manifested themselves during the 70s in a fusion of unique and unrepeatable sounds and moods. Tony Cercola is one of the protagonists of Neapolitan Power. He describes this phenomenon through these words:
TC: “The 70s were important because they revolutionized the classical song, giving voice to particular musicians, to sessions, to the study of blues with Mediterranean influence and music and jazz with our music. In short, the 70s meant that all the genres of the world could line up with the Neapolitan genres. Jazz, Mediterranean, Blues, embrace with Neapolitan music and Etnoworld is born.”
As a child, at school, he drew comics dreaming his future with music. He was a stutterer and he was often bullied. Thanks to the music he got a social revenge. In fact, He tells that those who bullied him, as soon as they listened to him playing, they were impressed and they felt guilty for hurting him and for having stolen his breakfast many times. The child gained the esteem of those who, until then, had bullied him. They became friends. “Culture disarms. Music disarms violence.” Says Tony.
Tony Cercola started by playing a “buatta” (French word to indicate a can). He played with nationally renowned artists such as Eduardo Bennato, Pino Daniele, Nino D’Angelo, Tullio De Piscopo and internationally as Don Cherry, Billy Cobham, Nana Vasconcelos, Bryan Ferry, Billy Preston.
He is always involved in interesting cultural projects. He released his music, he wrote two books and he also was the protagonist, together with the historical Vesuvian singers, of a documentary on Vesuvian traditions. Napulitanamente interviewed Tony Cercola on his career and on Napolitan Power.