Nicole Heartseeker – piano
Mulo Francel – sax & clarinet
Canzoni della Bella Italia
Melodies full of affection and longing. Images of the sweet and southern life that have always fired the imagination of the Central European.
Picked up on many trips to the Mediterranean sea. Songs from Bella Italia, once performed by enchanting singers like Claudio Villa, Ornella Vanoni, Gino Paoli, Roberto Murolo or Pino Daniele.
Nicole Heartseeker began playing the organ as a junior student and continued her master class studies in harpsichord and piano. She placed an emphasis on the works of Johann Sebastian Bach, Max Reger, and the preservation of historical musical traditions. During her intensive study of sacred organ music, she developed the desire to transfer this specific art of music-making to the piano. After her training as a classical musician, Nicole Heartseeker realized increasingly unusual projects. With her unique blend of classical, jazz and world music, she defies the usual notions of genre boundaries.
Nicole Heartseeker describes her idea for the album That’s Amore:
“They are songs that take me into another world and touch me deeply. I didn’t dare to interpret them independently for a long time. Then came Mulo. An evening with friends, lots of wine, I sat down at the grand piano. He took his saxophone, played the old melodies free of shyness and dissolved ingrained patterns through improvisation. In the weeks that followed, we set to work on this album and went into the studio.”
Mulo Francel is a saxophonist and globetrotter.
Furthermore known as the creative whirlwind of the ensemble Quadro Nuevo.
For many years, the multiple ECHO award winner has been traveling the countries of this world playing. From Bavaria to the Balkans to Bolivia and Buenos Aires. Concert tours have taken him from Hong Kong to the opera in Cairo to New York’s Carnegie Hall.
Over the years, he has developed his own authentic way of playing world music. His distinctive style explores the boundaries between tango, classical, jazz and improvisation.
Mulo Francel gave more than 4000 concerts worldwide, received many awards like the European Impa-la, the ECHO Jazz for the best live act and the Golden Record for the Quadro Nuevo Al-bum Mocca Flor.
The magazine Kulturnews attributed to him the “currently most sensual saxophone sound in Europe”.
Together, Heartseeker and Francel have been experimenting in an encounter of sacred music, classical music and improvisation since 2007. The duo’s debut, Angel Affair, was released in 2009 as a highly acclaimed album for saxophone and church organ. In the following years, numerous concerts followed, mainly in churches. In 2021 the album Forever Young was released: An artistic dialogue across style and time boundaries. A saxophone and a piano communicate with the old masters. Composers from Handel and Bach to Schubert and Piazzolla are given a completely new listening perspective and fall into a musical fountain of youth.
Mulo Francel reports:
At the age of 16, I traveled across the Alps for the first time without parents. In a small town very far down the boot, I stayed at the campsite for two weeks with friends. We had hardly any money, but we were happy. Sun, sea and many young people from Salerno and Napoli, with whom we quickly became friends. From their cassette recorders on the beach sounded a strange music that attracted me magically: Pino Daniele!
His mixture of Canzone Napoletana, Blues and Jazz fascinated me.
Later I traveled the globe with my band Quadro Nuevo.
But we always return to Italy. Sometimes as street musicians, then again some concerts in small picturesque Tuscan towns, on medieval castles in Alto Adige, on festivals in Bari or in the accordion town Castelfidardo. With the actor Ulrich Tukur we set Goethe’s Italian Journey to music to an audio book
No matter where in the world I am on stage, when I play Luna Rossa by Claudio Villa or the old Neapolitan song Anema e Core, I close my eyes. Then it smells of cyp-ressen and ripe lemons. Then I feel the gentle waves of the Mediterranean and hear the Zikaden in the pine trees. Then I see the girls from Salerno from back then in front of me. Laughing on the beach.“