“If I didn’t have my own voice, I’d like to have the voice of a young Italian girl named Mina”
Sarah Vaughan. 1968.
Mina is the greatest Italian singer of all times, but not only. For Italians, Mina is an icon equally as important as the biggest and best known names about which they boast as proof that Italy has the highest quality everything in the world, like Ferrari or Fellini. In the Italian collective imagination, Mina is a national treasure to be proud of and jealously guarded.
During the ‘60s and the ‘70s Mina embodied the very essence of the ultra-talented superstar on stage, in TV and in her records. She made television history and then suddenly, inexplicably decided to retire. She sang Italy’s greatest hits, which for over 40 years have been the leitmotiv of the everyday life of the Italian people. Nowadays Mina releases one record a year. She is perhaps the only artist in the world that does not offer herself up to the media – as a matter of fact, she does not grant interviews, has not appeared in concert or made any other public appearance for more than 20 years. Yet, all her new albums reach number one in the national hit parade.
In addition to her recordings, in recent years Mina has published as freelance journalist in important newspapers and magazines, revealing a penchant for deep, thought-provoking insight. Her successful columns have earned her a new, wide-flung reputation as a talented editorialist, demonstrating intelligence and adding wide journalistic credibility to her fame as singer.
Thanks to her capacity for “self-irony” that her unrivalled talent has always assured her, Mina has always laughed about, played and gambled with her image, varying it in a thousand ways in the media and even on her record sleeves, many of which have been placed on exhibit in Italian museums of art. Always ahead of her times, Mina remains on the cutting edge even in new technologies. In 2001 she opened the doors of her recording studios to the WWW by streaming an extended version of the videotaped session of her new album. The night the video went on-line, the server was overwhelmed with over 50,000 connection requests and the entire system crashed.
Mina is an eclectic, versatile artist completely at ease with a repertoire spanning all musical genres, all of which she has sung with masterful panache.