Franco De Vita
Franco De Vita (born January 23, 1954 in Caracas, Venezuela) is a singer-songwriter popular in Latin music. One of three children born in Latin America to Italian immigrants, De Vita’s family returned to Italy when he was 3. The family moved back to Venezuela when De Vita was 13, and he later studied piano at the university level. In 1982, De Vita formed the group Icaro, which released one self-titled album in his homeland. Two years later, he released his first disc as a solo artist, simply titled Franco De Vita. The album spun off three Spanish-language hits: “Somos Tres,” “No Hay Cielo” and “Un Buen Perdedor.” His 1986 album Fantasía produced several more hits, including the title song and “Aquí Estás Otra Vez.” “Sólo Importas Tú,” taken from the album, was used as the theme song to the Spanish-language soap opera La Dama De Rosa. He appeared in the end credits of every episode, performing the song at the piano. Seeking wider international exposure, De Vita moved to the Sony label for the 1988 album Al Norte Del Sur. A critical and commercial smash, the album cemented his reputation as a purveyor of socially-conscious, adult-oriented pop, particularly through the tunes “Te Amo” and “Louis.” The latter song, about a daydreaming cabbie who idolizes The Beatles, was promoted with a music video considered quite advanced for its time. De Vita’s 1990 album Extranjero featured the song “No Basta,” which spent four weeks at No. 1 on the U.S. Latin charts and won an MTV Video Music Award. Subsequent albums have included the live release En Vivo Marzo 16 (1992); Voces A Mi Alrededor in 1993; the acoustic-flavored Fuera De Este Mundo (1996); and 1999’s world-beat inspired Nada Es Igual. He left Sony for the 2002 album Segundas Partes También Son Buenas, but returned to the label the following year. De Vita has continued to enjoy success as one of Latin music’s most consistently popular singer-songwriters, with a style often compared to Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel. His 2004 album Stop reached the Top 10 throughout Latin America and on the U.S. Latin charts, spurred by the hits “Tú De Qué Vas” and “Si La Ves,” the latter a collaboration with pop group Sin Bandera. That same year, he toured arenas in the United States on a co-headlining tour with Ricardo Montaner, a fellow Venezuelan songwriter. De Vita is reportedly one of the largest selling musical artists ever to emerge from Venezuela. He also has recorded in Italian and Portuguese, albeit to less success. As a songwriter, he has written hits for Ricky Martin and Chayanne. In 2005, an expanded edition of Stop was released, titled Stop + Algo Más, that included remixes and live recordings, as well as No Sé Lo Que Me Das, De Vita's first recording in English. The following year saw the release of Mil y Una Historias En Vivo, a two-disc live album that also featured four studio tracks, including collaborations with Alejandro Fernández and Diego El Cigala. A DVD version was released simultaneously.