Xmas with Serge Fiori
Updated: Apr 18, 2022
August 1996, Montreal is in the middle of a heat wave and I'm getting ready for a very special session. The late George Fiori is recording his second opus with us in mobile (Studio Air MS). It is a Christmas album. The first one being an album of great Italian classics and other opera extracts. George and Serge Fiori chose the church of St-Jean-de-la-croix in Little Italy. This is where George was married about 50 years ago. (Now transformed into condos!).
Everything that goes up must come down...and up again
The studio is well installed in the basement, but the singers and the pipe organ are in the rood screen...three floors up. In the middle of a heat wave, I lost kilos that week! Go up and down, adjust the microphones, go up and down... Technically the challenge was great, like this church. 5 or 6 opera singers with Perry Canestrari surrounded by the pipe organ and a super long reverb. This gave a magical and solemn album.
This album will remain in my memory until my death, because at the moment of finishing the mix of the Ave Maria I fell ill just before the session. Serge arrives and sees me in this state and says to me with his deep voice ''Marco you cannot mix man! go to bed you are green. We'll come back tomorrow. The next day I wake up in great shape and my mother calls me to tell me that my grandmother passed away the day before just as I was getting ready to mix the song. I remembered Carl Jung.
Wedding guitarist in work boots
It was quite an experience to make these 2 albums of George with Serge Fiori as producer. Hearing his anecdotes from Harmonium... a real treat. Young guitarist with his work boots in his father's wedding band or clerk in the family bakery. A family with adventures funnier than the other. Told by Serge his father or his mother...what a beautiful moment of life.
I put a copy of the record in my grandmother's coffin, she who loved to sing in the choir at Charlemagne church and who celebrated Christmas with a big party every year. RIP Germaine
Thank you George and Serge it was an honor.
Merry Christmas to all!