Al Bano

Al Bano
Release date
01 January 1970
Al Bano
01 January 1970 |

He was born in the town of Cellino San Marco (province of Brindisi, Puglia in Southern Italy), where he still lives.
His mother Iolanda Ottino named him Albano because, when he was born, his father Carmelo Carrisi was fighting in Albania for the Royal Italian Army during World War II. He has one brother, Franco Carrisi (Kocis).
He made his debut in 1966 both as a singer, at the Festival delle Rose, and on television. He won the Disco per l’Estate, an Italian song contest, with “Pensando a te” in 1968. He recorded some major hits such as “La siepe” and “Nel sole” at that time. “Nel sole” sold 600,000 copies in Italy within three months of release in 1967, and eventually over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc in July 1968.

Soon afterwards, he started a musical collaboration with Romina Power (daughter of the American actor Tyrone Power), whom he married in 1970. After their marriage, they recorded “Storia di due innamorati”. They sang as the duo Al Bano & Romina Power for almost thirty years; their work has been especially popular in Italy, Austria, France, Spain, Bulgaria, Romania, Greece and Germany. They released “Dialogo” in 1975 and took part in the Eurovision Song Contest 1976 with the song “We’ll Live It All Again” (“Noi lo rivivremo di nuovo”). They sang “Sharazan” in 1981 and the following year they took part in the Sanremo Music Festival with the song “Felicità”, which came second. They won first prize in 1984 singing “Ci sarà” and again took part in the Eurovision Song Contest 1985 with “Magic Oh Magic”. Both their Eurovision entries placed 7th. Other hits of 1987 include: “Nostalgia canaglia” (awarded 3rd prize at Festival di Sanremo ’87) and “Libertà”. Those successful songs were followed by “Cara terra mia”, which came in third once more at the 1989 Sanremo Music Festival, and “Oggi sposi” which placed 8th at the 1991 Sanremo Music Festival.

Al Bano returned to his solo career in 1996 with “È la mia vita” which was followed by “Verso il sole” in 1997 and “Ancora in volo” in 1999 (that year, his duo – and his marriage – with Romina broke up). He also played in “Herşeye Rağmen” (“Nonetheless” in Turkish) music video of Sima (full name was Sima Sarıkaya), a Turkish singer in 1997. In 2000, Al Bano returned to the Eurovision stage, providing backing vocals for the Swiss entry (performed in Italian) “La vita cos’è?” performed by Jane Bogaert. This song placed 20th out of 24 in the contest. On 16 October 2001, Carrisi was nominated Goodwill Ambassador of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

In 2005, he starred in the Italian reality show L’isola dei Famosi (Italian version of Celebrity Survivor) with his daughter, Romina Carrisi. Al Bano returned to Sanremo Music Festival in 2007, where he sang “Nel perdono” which came in second place.

Al Bano still tours all over the world. He is a constant on Italian television and has a large number of fans who follow his career very closely. To date Al Bano has sold 165 million albums around the world. Al Bano has visited Albania a number of times. He was there for a concert in 1989 and has been enjoying great popularity there.
In June 2016 it was announced that Al Bano was granted Albanian citizenship due to his close ties with the country and career successes in Albania.