Festival di Sanremo 1976: My opinion of the final day (Part I)


The influence for the Eurovision Song Contest was no other than the Sanremo Festival, also known as Festival della canzone italiana, because it’s an italian music festival where there’s a winning song since 1951. The festival has been the preselection for selecting an italian entry and/or artist for ESC, both official and/or internal and at times, inadvertly (from 1956 to 1966, 1972, 1997 and recently in 2011 and 2012)

But we’re going to one of the editions that wasn’t set as selection for an ESC edition, but is still quite rich musically: the 20th Sanremo Festival 1976. More precisely, in the final day of the competition on 21st February 1976

Held for the last time in the Casinò Municipale di Sanremo theater, this edition came with a few changes after the failure of the previous edition: radio DJ Giancarlo Guardabassi was the host of the three nights (Domenico Modugno, ESC italian representant in 1958, 1959 and 1966 was initially chosen as the host, but refused. Still, he went there as a guest singer), with the visual presentation being envisioned as a radio presentation, much like it was done in USA; a big number of international stars were invited as guest singers and a high selection of profile artists for Sanremo 1976 were chosen and the orchestra was abolished (there was still live vocal performances, though)

After a brief introduction by the presenter, the parade of songs would begin. Since I don’t known the order of appearance of the songs, I’ll present the songs with their respective results at the end of the show from the 18th place to the 1st place. In this 1st part, it will be from the 18th to the 10th placed songs:

18th place, 3 points: La Nuova Gente – Che sarei

Formerly a group named Gens, it was composed by three members of the first reffered group that had been disabanded by 1974 and that had debuted as La Nuova Gente the previous year with a single release. It seemed like a vogue for italian bands to perform romantic ballads in that decade as we find one. And it’s a very nice one, with some nice key changes and a melodical and emotional line attached to it. The performance was nice as well

17th place, 5 pointsI Profeti – Cercati un’anima

Otherwise a known band back then, they were in fact almost coming to an end (in 1977, the band would cease their work definitively), but not without coming to the Sanremo stage for the first and last time. A emotional entry about a broken relationship with well-made arrangements and heartfelt lyrics. No problems about their good performance either

=15th place, 6 pointsMiko – Signora tu

A large amount of time passed between the year he started his carrer in 1964 as Don Miko to his first Sanremo participation in 1976 as Miko (and his carrer is still on-going as various names) and this comes with a song he co-wrote (his real name is, therefore, Pier Michele Bozzetti). In a alegory and contemplation of all the women in the world, here we have a quite strong ballad with a positive melancholic feeling. The middle of the song, though, is a bit of a letdown. Quite strong performance in it as well that night

=15th place, 6 pointsSergio Endrigo – Quando c’era il mare

Formerly a Sanremo winner in, for example, 1968 and 1969 and an ESC participant in 1968 with “Marianne”, he comes once again to the competition after having it done so the last time in 1973 and as always with a song written by himself. A ballad with an italian flavour about the man’s platonic love relationship that does its best in the more somber parts and puts the light parts at half. At times, when I hear this, I think of François Truffaut‘s 1967 critical flop but cult hit movie “La mariée était en noir” (“The bride wore black”)… at least, the somber parts. The performance is indeed agile and emotional enough, without falling into the over-the-top visual performance moves

14th place, 9 pointsPatrizio Sandrelli – Piccola donna, addio

The sucess he had the previous year with “Fratello in amore” was merely responsible for his first and sole participation in the competition, although he started his carrer in 1971 (and would end in 1979). A not bad romantic ballad about the end of a relationship, altough there were better songs in this edition. And the performance was good, although not as memorable

13th place, 10 pointsRicchi e Poveri & I Nostri Figli – Due storie dei musicanti

Ricchi & Poveri were already a known group by the time they performed (actually, they participated a couple times before in Sanremo, one of which granting them a hit that transcended internationally thanks to several cover versions (“Chi sarà” in 1971) and would later represent Italy in Eurovision Song Contest 1978. I Nostri Figli were a group of children that were making their first steps, culminating in the 80’s providing an italian original song for the transmission of the 1975-1976 japanese anime series, “Mitsubachi Maya no Bouken” and its 1978-1979 sequel “Shin Mitsubachi Maya no Bouken”. The funny song aimed at a more familiar audience was actually a combination of two songs from the homonimous album: “I-o bau coccodè miao” e “Il mio canto”. An original sounding one for the competition, the performance was quite sweet and adventurous as well

12th place, 11 pointsLa Strana Società – Andiamo via

Also debutants in the competition, the group had started their carrer in 1971 with some degree of sucess before being invited to participate in Sanremo that year. Much like the power ballads that were making such sucess internationally thanks to I Santo California, this love declaration ballad is sweet and tender. The spoken parts only add much mysticism to it. The performance of that night was simply nice and tender as well

11th place, 16 pointsOrietta Berti – Omar

A household singer since 1962, Orietta Berti has already been in several Sanremo editions and this edition would not be an exception. This one has a special catch, though: the catchy gypsy flavoured entry dedicated to her recently born son, Omar, was backed by a highly odd performance that featured dancers and chorists in gypsy clothes. A very memorable performance, indeed, and a “guilty pleasure” kind of song

10th place, 19 pointsI Camaleonti – Cuore di vetro

Although they started their carrers in 1963 and reached some sucesses in the 60’s, their artistic and commercial peak is in the 70’s, with songs like “Perchè ti amo” becoming evergreens. By the time they participated in this Sanremo edition, they were not newcomers as they participated before in 1970 and 1973. One of my favourites in this edition, it’s an emotional “on a verge of a break-up” ballad in which the person in question affirms that without her, his heart would be a “heart of stone”. The performance only adds the greatness of the song, simply touching. Underrated on the final night, indeed

That’s all from the first part of the Festival di Sanremo 1976: Final day opinion. The 2nd part will come soon, but as a final treat, the video of the opening of the final day of Sanremo 1976 (as broadcasted by TVE (Spain) in a repeat by defunct TV-memory channel, Canal Nostalgia. The Sanremo Festival was also, at the time, broadcasted worldwide for the EBU members that would want to broadcast it so. RTP would do it at times in those years):

Thank you,

LAboy 456
(Rui Craveiro)


Posted on 16 de September de 2012, in Other Festivals. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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