Italy’s Alpini Corps: The Traditions Beyond the Feathered Cap

The grey felt cap adorned with a black raven feather worn by old northern Italian men and some modern-day camouflaged troops is known as the Cappello Alpino. This recognizable cap signifies that the wearer is or was a member of the Alpini, an elite corps of the Italian army that is most closely associated with World War I and is the oldest mountain infantry in the world. Continue reading Italy’s Alpini Corps: The Traditions Beyond the Feathered Cap

Italy Hit Parade Vol. I

Discovering new or new-to-me music has always been one of my favorite things about traveling and living abroad. So I plan to use this space to bring you some of the songs that I’m listening to in Italy. Some of the music will be bubbly pop, some hip hop, some…I don’t know what. But most, if not all, will come from the radio and MTV (which actually plays videos here).

Note that some of these videos may not play because of region restrictions or on mobile. I really have no way of knowing if every video will work. So consider IHP Vol. I the first test.

Rocco Hunt is one of the more successful (and accessible) hip hop artists in Italy. Continue reading Italy Hit Parade Vol. I

Jazz in January

Winter means the music season for most of Italy. Opera productions and church-sponsored chamber music events are typical fare from Liguria to Lecce, but you’ll also find jazz and blues in the mix. Umbria, which has been home to Umbria Jazz and Umbria Jazz Winter for about a decade, is also host to Terni in Jazz, a festival that keeps central Italy humming until spring.

While several cities in Italy put on annual jazz festivals, only a few (that we know of) take advantage of the long winter nights with performances by internationally-known singers, pianists, saxophonists, and guitar players. Here’s a sampling:

Brianza Open Winter (Provincia di Milano)
Fiemme Ski Jazz (Valle di Fiemme, Trentino)
Euritmica (Udine)