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Matt Bianco


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Matt Bianco is a UK band that was formed in 1983 and continues to exist to date. They are mainly known for their success in the mid 1980s and their jazzy, Latin-flavoured music. 

Popular during the mid 1980s in continental Europe, Matt Bianco epitomised the new jazz pop genre that they shared with Working Week, Sade, Everything But the Girl and The Style Council. The band name suggests that Matt Bianco is a personal name, but Matt is “a made up spy, a secret agent; we loved spy TV themes and film scores”

The Early Years

Formed by the late Kito Poncioni (bass), Mark Reilly (vocals), and Danny White (keyboards) in 1982 out of the shards of the abandoned art poppers Blue Rondo á la Turk, for their first album Whose Side Are You On?, they hired unknown Polish vocalist Basia Trzetrzelewska. Her vocal arrangements gave the album a jazzy dimension that Reilly and White could not anticipate but made good use of. Mixmaster Phil Harding applied what would become his signature style to the recordings. Hits like “Get Out of Your Lazy Bed” and “Half a Minute” (which Basia would feature live throughout her career) turned Matt Bianco into one of the biggest acts of Europe in 1984.

Basia and Danny White left the group after the first album to pursue a lucrative solo career with Sony under the name Basia on the Epic label. They maintained their working relationship with Phil Harding, who would continue to work with Matt Bianco as well. Mark Reilly, now without a musical partner, found ex-Wham keyboarder and session musician, Mark Fisher, and recorded the next (self-titled) Matt Bianco album. 


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