bisogno di te"
("I need you") by Roberto Bignoli: a
CD that "embraces you"
Roberto Bignoli Talks about World Youth Day
"Ho bisogno di te" (I need you) is the title of the
latest multimedia CD from Roberto Bignoli, without a doubt one of
Italy's best known Christian inspired singer songwriters.
More than simply a compact disc, this piece of work can probably
be best defined as "a dialogue" in which Roberto speaks
directly to the hearts of the listeners through his songs. He
confides in them and offers himself to them both as a friend as
well as a performer.
The result is a CD that is packed full of emotions and different
messages, leaving the listener far from indifferent. Roberto's
voice hits home hard, questioning the soul and forcing a point of
discussion right from album's outset and from its very first
The CD's opening track, entitled "Cosa c'e" (What is
there) addresses all those individuals who are experiencing a
period of difficulty and suffering. "Parlati e capirai",
(Speak and you'll understand" sings Roberto, in an invitation
to the listener to look inside oneself and to "erase the
badness from within one's own heart".
It is precisely this badness that bestows unrest upon man. But it
is not an enemy that cannot be defeated. Robert uses the imagery
of a big field, where each and every one of us is invited to
"sew love". In the end the result is that only the good
fruits will be harvested and the moments of darkness will remain
as nothing more than just a bad memory.
The next track, "Blues cielo blue" (Blues blue sky")
is a Franciscan type message of praise to the Lord, put together
through the music and chords of blues music: "Holy is His
name. Everlasting is his glory. He is faithful and renders every
justice. All of you young men and women praise Him. All of you,
sun, moon and stars, praise Him".
The next track is a moving and touching piece that turns to Jesus
and Our Blessed Lady, imagining them as "Travelling
companions". In this song Roberto invites the listener to
become aware of the presence of God in our daily lives, to trust
in Him and allow Him to accompany us along our journey: "You
who colours the history of the world. You who gathers up all of my
poverty. Now I know that I need no longer live in fear, in Your
house of love".
The conversation with the listener continues and touches points of
great tenderness, gentleness and intimacy in
"Desiderata" ("Desired"). More than just a
song, it is a whispered monologue, similar in style to the
presentation of Rudyard Kipling's "If": "Whatever
your battles and inspirations may be, preserve the peace with your
soul" says Roberto. "Cultivate the strength of the
spirit, in order to defend yourself against sudden misfortune. But
do not torment yourself with your imagination. Many fears are born
of tiredness and of loneliness".
The desire to find peace in meeting the Lord, which is the
underlying theme of the entire album, is expressed perfectly in
the next track entitled "Ho bisogno di te" ("I need
you"). The words describe splendidly our position as "offspring",
who cannot survive without the affection of our heavenly father:
"I need you. Please come soon. I'm waiting for You. You are
the law of the heart. Everything by now is fulfilled. There is
need of you here now. You know that I dream of a world that is
perfect, just as You are".
The next number "Le lacrime di Dio" ("The tears of
God") contains a powerful message of hope. Roberto offers us
some snapshots of the ills of this world: women who are exploited
and abused, poverty, desperation, war, children who are
slaughtered and missiles that rain down onto their homes. Despite
all of this, Roberto asks us once again to remember the presence
of a Father who accompanies us from heaven above. "I have
dreamt about the Lord's tears. I dreamt about them falling from
the skies. And each and every tear that dropped, every tear that
fell was a sign of hope being born".
The awareness of the presence of God, that heals the wounds of the
world, reverberates in the cry "There is God" in the
song "Angeli" ("Angels"). Roberto appeals
precisely to these heavenly guardians of ours to announce the
breath of a wind that brings life: "Spirit who enters me,
with all the love there is, save me from this world because I want
to sing for you. Angels, you who are always by my side, give me
the imagination with which to imagine a better world. Continue to
sing and dream that there is God".
The last two tracks are very simple but truly beautiful
declarations of love. The first "Ti amo" (I love you)
turns once more to God, who "hides in order to be found".
Roberto invites us to see the Lord in all creation: "I love
you in the morning when, in a trance, I look at all those things
that You have created, in the wind and in the sun. I see Your face
in the dawn and in the sunset, reflected on the surface of the sea".
"I love you" he goes on "as a poet who loves his
bride" and then "I love you in every brother of every
race and every nation".
The second declaration of love is dedicated to the Our Lady:
"Blues per Maria" ("Blues for Mary". It would
have been impossible for Robert to find a better-suited number
with which to bring this album, which is constantly uplifting our
hearts towards heaven, to its conclusion. He sings "Mary,
doorway to heaven. Mary, sweetest perfume. Make it so that we can
enter the garden of Your Paradise and rejoice in Your triumph. In
this world swathed in darkness, that is in need of the light of
God, Mary save this humanity."
The compact disc however does not end here, for in addition to the
nine tracks, it also contains a multimedia presentation with
video, photos and information on Robert, in English, Italian and
Spanish. Amongst these is a beautiful presentation produced for a
RAI (Italian State TV) in which Roberto tells his own story.
In other words, "Ho bisogno di te" ("I need you")
is a 'whole' work that is of an extremely professional and high
standard, not just for the beauty of its lyrics and its musical
composition, but also because of the amount care taken with the
different arrangements and in how the sounds have been presented.
On a personal note they reminded me of the tasteful works of the
Italian artist, Fabrizio De Andre's live performances with the
Premiata Forneria Marconi band, also well known in Italy.
An additional qualitative touch appears in the form of beautiful
black and white photographs that have been reproduced in a small
album that accompanies the compact disc. They are powerful, moving
and touching images that sum up the messages contained in the
words of the song.
I believe that this CD represents the moment of maturity of an
artist who, over a period of many years now, has continued to give
us the present of emotions. It is a work that totally "envelopes"
its listeners, embracing them and involving them on a variety of
different emotional levels: from pleasure derived from the
beautiful melodies, to the constant prompting to reflect brought
about by the song's lyrics.
My sincerest wish is that this CD achieves the success it truly
deserves, not just because of the quality of the work, but also in
recognition to Roberto Bignoli's unrelenting commitment to
Christian music, both Italian and international.
During the last month I have had a chance to spend a little time
with Roberto, getting to know both him and his family. The thing
that struck me most, in addition to his music, is the honest,
enthusiastic and positive way in which he talks about his fellow
Christian singer songwriters.
In a world such as the one in which we live today, often
characterized by envy and social climbing, this is evidently a
detail that cannot be ignored. This is just one more thing that is
worthy of a mention, and to be added to the curriculum of a great
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