About

The brainchild of British singer-songwriter Joe Cang and Italian musician and composer Matteo Saggese, Loco Ironico is the collective band name for these two long time friends and musical collaborators.

In 2015 after a 2 year hiatus, they came back together at the piano again…

“We started writing this album on a rainy day in London and the songs of heartache, shipwreck and weight loss arrived in a hurry, as if urgent to be heard. We quickly realised that this was a record that wanted to be made in one go. No tricks, smoke or mirrors, just people, instruments, microphones and music all together live in one room, to capture the unique magical moments as they happened.”

So, in a tiny medieval village (Sigicgnano degli Alburni) in the mountains near Naples, nourished by the warmth, peace and pace of village life, soaked in southern Italian sunshine, wine and melodies, the first album – Carpe Afternoon was born.

With the legendary engineer Jerry Boys (The Beatles, Buena Vista Social Club, Shakira, Ry Cooder) we set up a studio in a living room unchanged since the 1970’s and joined by the great Danny Cummings (Elton John, Mark Knopfler) on drums and percussion and Davide Mantovnni (Fela Kuti, Baaba Nana Vasconcelos) on double bass.

Every song is one live take – vocals, piano, bass and drums and all 11 songs were recorded in 3 days with no click track, separation or safety net.

We were then blessed by the addition of some incredible guests:

Phil Manzanera (Roxy Music, Pink Floyd)
Sarah Jane Morris (The Communards, Pere Ubu)
Peppe Servillo (Pailo Conte, Avion Travel)
Steve Sidwell (Stevie Wonder, Sting)
Tony Remy (The Crusaders, Annie Lennox)
Dario Deidda (Benny Golson, Gil Evans Orchestra)
John Parricelli (Andy Shepard, Goldfrapp)
and Ben Castle (Radiohead, Gregory Porter)

As Joe says ‘This is music for those with a taste for the ironic and laconic and who prefer whisky to tonic”

In 2017 after two years of being asked what type of music they make, Matteo and Joe now liken their sound to a musical gumbo, mixing sounds, styles and songs together into a slow-cooked sonic stew.

So with twelve new songs recorded live and undiluted, commenting on subjects from GMO crops to elusive future physical fitness, the title of their second album is…Mambo Gumbo!

Recorded once again by Jerry Boys and graced by the talents of many great friends again, Mambo Gumbo is full of flavour and guaranteed to require at least a second helping.

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Matteo Saggese (Piano)

Born in southern Italy, Matteo is a musician and songwriter, who has also written, arranged and produced for Phil Manzanera, Celine Dion, Il Divo, Zucchero, Nina Hagen, Celentano and Alfie Boe.

Joe Cang (Vocals)

London born singer, writer and multi-instrumentalist Joe released his first solo album after being signed by Clive Davis to Arista records. He has toured, recorded and written with Ian Dury, Scritti Politti, Desmond Dekker, Hall and Oates, Marianne Faithfull and Aswad.

DANNY CUMMINGS (Drums & Percussion) has recorded with Tina Turner, George Michael, Elton John, Simply Red, Mark Knopfler, Depeche Mode, Bryan Adams and Dire Straits.
JOHN PARICELLI (Guitars) was one of the founding members of the British big band Loose Tubes, and has worked with Annie Whitehead, Kenny Wheeler, Norma Winstone, Lee Konitz and Peter Erskine.
DAVIDE MANTOVANI (Double Bass) has played with Lisa Stansfield, Tony Allen (Fela Kuti), Baaba Maal, Andy Sheppard, Jason Rebello, and Nana Vasconcelos.
TOMMASO SCANNAPIECO (Double Bass) has played and plays regularly with: Peggy Stern, Roy Hargrove, Greg Hutchinson, Clarence Penn, Steve Grossman and Nick the Nightfly.
JERRY BOYS (Sound Engineer) 4 x Grammy winner including the Buena Vista Social Club. He has worked with The Beatles, Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones, REM, Ry Cooder, Ibrahim Ferrer, John Lee Hooker, Yehudi Menuhin, Ali Farka Toure, Shakira, and Baaba Maal.