1000 (Viva V.E.R.D.I.) is a song based on the historical battle that took place in Italy in 1861 where a group of political figures in the north banded together to overthrow the Austrian, French, and Spanish regimes in Italy. The aim was to end foreign occupancy, unite Italy under one flag, language, and monarch, and aim for a future free from oppression.


1861, Giuseppe Garibaldi leaves the shores of Genova for Sicily with 1000 men dressed in denim jeans and red shirts. The locals know there will be an uprising and they are ready. Although they are poor and have little, they are armed with centuries of pent up fury. There is a promise made to southern Italy: that unification under the Savoia monarchy will drive out the foreign occupants including the Spanish Bourbons, and put the power back in the hands of the people. There is a growing hope for change – a growing belief that the futility of their century’s old fate can indeed come to an end.  They will sacrifice everything to turn on their masters. They cannot go back. They will not lose.

3. 1000 (VIVA V.E.R.D.I.)
Romina (voice, guitar), Francesco Pellegrino (colascione, tammorra), Gianluca Campanino (tammorra), Ben Grossman (tammorra, percussion), Mike Herriott (trumpet, french horn, trombone), Drew Jurecka (violin), Rebekah Wolkstein (violin), Shannon Knights (viola), Rachel Pmedli (cello), Roberto Occhipinti (double bass).

Ascia, gancio, sega, pala, /  Ax, hook, saw, shovel
falce, raspa, zappa, spada, /  scythe, rasp, hoe, sword,
lama, pietra, unghia, denti,  /  blade, stone, fingernail, teeth,
urli, strilli, maledetti!  /  hollers, screams, cursed people!

O diman’ O diman’  /  O tomorrow,  O tomorrow
A Marsala, Garibald’  /  Garibaldi at Marsala
Suona a tromba, suona a guerra  /  Sound the trumpet, Sound the war
Suona in cielo, suona in terra.  /  Resounds in the sky, resounds on the earth.

Scende 1000, e 1000 incontra  /  One thousand descend, and 1000 encounter
Coppole bianca, giubbe rosse  /  White caps, red jackets
Infuoc’ o vient, infuoc’ a notte  /  Ignite the wind, ignite the night
Infuoc’ a vita e la morte  / Ignite life and ignite death.

Suona!  / Play!

Terra acqua, terra pane  /  Land water, land bread
terra amara, terra fame  /  land bitter, land hunger
terra madre, e Schiavona  /  land mother, and slave (also Madonna of Montevergine)
terra nasc’ e terra torna.  /  land birth, and land return.

Corti, chiati, grandi e grossi  / Short, fat, large, robust
alti, bassi, tost’e mosce  /  tall, short, hard, and soft
Per l’onore di servire  /  For the honour of serving
Si, morir, morir, morire! / Yes, death, death, death!

Si! Si! Ah, Ha-ha-ha!  / Yes! Yes, Ah, Ha-ha-ha!

Frate e frate messi in guerra  /  Brother to brother put in war
per padroni in casa terra  / for foreign masters in our home land
senza madre e senza amore  /  without mother and without love
riuniti nell’furore  /  re-united in fury.

O giornata del retagg’  /  O day of wrath (and heritage)
da sotto il piede a sopra il braccio  / from under their feet, to above their brawn
armati dei dolori e santi  / armed by anguish and saints
e il fuoco dei segreti pianti.  /  and the fire of secret tears.

Vola, vola, la regina  /  Fly, fly, the little queen
la baronessa e a piccirilla  /  the baroness, and the little one
vola vola d’o balcone  /  fly, fly from the balcony
lu galinaccio e lu pavone  /  the cock and the peacock.

Preti, papa e preghiere  /  Priests, pope and prayers
Dies ire e miserere  /  Dies ire and miserere
Campanelli suona a vetta  /  Church bells ring from the summit
Pentinenza e vendetta  /  penitence and vengeance

Sbatte, sbatte, cuore batte  /  Pound, pound, the heart pounds
Salta, salta, sangue salta  /  Leap, leap, the blood leaps
Scappa, scappa, scappa, scapp’,  /  Run, run, run, run
Scappa ratto, che mo t’acchiapp’  /  Run rat, for I am going to get you.

Patria mia bella e’ perduta  /  O my homeland, so beautiful and lost
Traviata e abbattuta  /  Lead astray and beaten down
da Milano a Cefalù  /  from Milano to Cefalù
Viva Verdi – V.V.V!  /  Viva Verdi – V.V.V!

Si! Si! Si! Si!  /  Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!

Siamo la Banda, e la tromba suonerà  /  We are the Band, and the trumpet will sound
morte e martire risusciterà  /  the dead and martyrs will rise again
il peccato è:  /  sin is:
la morte dalla freccia e la forza della legge  / death by the arrow, and the force of the law
ed e’ sommersa la morte nella vittoria  /  and it is submerged in death and victory.

Siamo la Banda, e il tamburo batterà  / We are the Band, and the hand drum beats
in mare o in monte, in paese e campagna  /  by sea or mountain, in town and countryside
corte, canto, e opera, sommersa in tammurriata  /  court, song, and opera, submerged in tammurriata
da Pagliaccio servo al giudice final.  /  from Jester servant to final judge.

Na-na-na-na…..Si, Si, Si, Si, Si, Si!!  /  Na-na-na-na…..Si, Si, Si, Si, Si, Si!!

Words and music by Romina Di Gasbarro © 2018 Romina Di Gasbarro (SOCAN) with exception of:   a. “Per l’onore di servire, si morir, morir, morire!” Franco Castelli, Per Un’antropologia del Risorgimento: Canti Popolari, Miti Locali e Fonti Orali b. “Morte e martire risusciterà, Il peccato è: la morte dalla freccia, e la forza della legge. E sommersa é la mort’ dint’a vittoria” 1 Corinthians 15:53-56 c. Musical references from, “Cortigiani, vil razza dannata” from Giuseppe Verdi’s, Rigoletto, used in string parts.

1000 (Viva V.E.R.D.I.) : Music written in the tammorriata style of the Naples region; and in the style of Roberto DeSimone’s, Secondo Coro delle Lavandaie from his 20th century opera, La Gatta Cenerentola. Text references:
1. “Suono di tromba” from popular doggerel verse about Garibaldi (Castelli, 9). Reference also to the “Dies Irae”, La tromba diffondendo un suono stupefacente tra i sepolcri del mondo spingerà tutti davanti al trono” (“The trumpet spreading an amazing sound among the tombs of the world push all before the throne”) (Neapolitan translation: sona ‘a tromba).
2. “Coppole bianche” refers to Verga’s novella “Libertà,” where the poor wear “white caps.” “Giubbe rosse refers to Garibaldi’s fleet of men who wore red shirts (and denim blue jeans originating from Genova from where they departed). The “white caps” and the “red shirts” meet to fight together.
3.“Per l’onore di servire, si morir, morir, morire!” (Castelli, 1) (Neapolitan translation: pe’ l’onore e’ servi’, si, murì, murì, murì!).
4. “O giornata del riscatto”
(O day of wrath) is paraphrased from the “Dies Irae (Neapolitan translation: O jiurnata do retaggio).
5. “Vola, vola” is not a direct reference to, but is inspired by, an Abruzzese folk song sung often by my mother at home during my childhood entitled “Vola Vola Vola”.
6. “Patria mia bella é perduta”
(O mia patria, si bella é perduta) refers to Giuseppe Verdi’s “Va pensiero,” which is considered the unofficial Italian national anthem because of its significance in Italy’s unification.
7. “Traviata,” meaning “led astray” or “corrupt,” makes another reference to Giuseppe Verdi.
8. “Abbattuta” refers to Dante Alighieri’s “Divine Comedy,” where he refers to Italy as a misguided and demolished ship (nave abbattuta) in the 6th Canto in Purgatory.
9. “Viva Verdi – VVV!” Refers to both Giuseppe Verdi and the pro-Risorgimento movement that supported unification under the Savoia King Vittorio Emanuele II.
10. “La Banda” refers to Garibaldi’s “band” of soldiers.
11. “Morte e martire risusciterà, Il peccato è: la morte dalla freccia, e la forza della legge. E sommersa é la mort’ dint’a vittoria” (“The dead and martyrs will resurrect, Sin is: death from the arrow, and the force of the law. And death submerged in victory”) (Neapolitan translation: …E sommersa é la morte dint’ a vittoria). The paraphrased passage comes from 1 Corinthians 15:53-56 in the Bible (1 Corinzi 15:53-56) .
12. “Corte, canto, e opera, sommersa in tammorriata” (“court, singing, and opera, submerged in tammorriata) refers to the royal court’s theatre that housed elite music like opera and that it is now “submerged” in the farmer’s folk, with tammorriata making reference to the first verse in the chorus from Corinthians where “death is submerged in victory.”
13. “buffone servo” (jester servant) makes another reference to Verdi’s “Rigoletto,” who refers to himself as a “buffone” within the opera and who disdains both the court’s aristocrats and his role of kowtowing to them – expressing the sentiments of the servitude class. “O uomini! O natura! Vil scellerato mi faceste voi! Oh rabbia! Esser difforme! Esser buffone! Non dover, non poter altro che ridere! Il retaggio d’ogni uom m’è tolto, il pianto (Translation: “Oh world! Oh nature! You made me wicked and evil! What a fate! To be deformed! To be a jester! I am commanded to make others laugh! I have inherited everyone’s sorrows and tears!”) (Verdi/Fisher 58)