At dawn on June 2nd forty years ago Rino Gaetano he died from the consequences of a road accident: a terrible head-on between his car, which had invaded the opposite lane, and a truck on the Via Nomentana in Rome that occurred during the night. He was only 31 years old.
To make the story even more tragic, if possible, is the fact that the Calabrian artist was rejected by various hospitals due to the lack of an adequate cranial trauma facility: when he finally arrived at the Gemelli Polyclinic it was late.
And on the absurdity of this premature death has also fallen the disturbing fog of a premonition: ten years earlier in the “Ballad of Renzo” he had told a story identical to his, a man hit by a car who dies because rejected by the same hospitals that then they would have rejected him too.
Rino Gaetano’s short career was not easy: when, after moving to Rome in the late 1960s, he began to take his first steps in the world of music, everything revolved around the Folkstudio where the Roman school of De Gregori and Venditti.
The moment that handed him over to the history of pop culture in our country is his participation in the 1978 Sanremo festival: he sang “Gianna” and, for the first time in the history of the Festival, the word “sex” was pronounced.
At the time the impression was of seeing a Martian, due to the irreverent power of that performance inspired more by Carmelo Bene than by the codes of music.
That evening all of Italy discovered Rino Gaetano: not necessarily everyone understood him. Yet the three minutes of that performance taught future generations the courage to challenge the rules.
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