In January 1967, The Bachelors were released from their stage Show to appear at the prestigious ‘San Remo Song Festival.’ For this event they recorded eight Italian language tracks, including ‘The Sound of Silence.’ Six were issued on three ‘Dischi Ricordi’ singles.
Seven tracks were also released on one side of an Italian album, the other side containing a selection from ‘Hits of the 60’s.’
The Italian album must be the rarest of all commercial Bachelors releases I’ve only ever seen two copies, and Con Cluskey has the other one! It took 33 years of searching for me to find and obtain it!
The Italians are passionate about their music and the group had gained commercial success with two Italian songs (translated into English),’ Love Me With All your Heart’ and ‘Can I Trust You’ Their Management secured them a place in the festival as a springboard to build on.
Although billed as a Festival – San Remo was really a song competition and The Bachelors won third place with ‘Proposta.’
I asked Dec how difficult it was to record these songs and perform them live;
“The recordings were done in Studio 1 at West Hampstead. The Italian record company sent their own Producer and Musical Director over for the project.
They introduced us to instruments we’d never had in previous arrangements and also recorded us in segments, stop/start … stop/start which was an alien technique to our ‘one take’ reputation! We were amazed how great it sounded when they pieced it all together…
…When we did the live show in San Remo I was very nervous. We each had a verse in ‘Proposta’ so we were sharing the lead vocal and I was up first! John and I pleaded with Con to rehearse more, but like all lead singers he had to be coerced into doing it!
Thankfully, we scored third place beating a lot of famous American acts such as Neil Diamond, Sonny and Cher and Gene Pitney. The Hollies were there too!
We were the only non Italian act to sing in Italian. Looking back now, I wonder how we had the time to learn, record and perform it all. It had the desired effect though… our Italian sales went through the roof!”