Spotlight of the Month
Law & Art presents art made by lawyers from around the world, and turns the spotlight on one new lawyer artist each month. As 2024 begins, we are delighted to introduce our first lawyer-musician, Mario Pagano. Mario is an Amsterdam-based post-doctoral researcher in private law by day, and a musician, both singer and pianist, by night.
Mario Pagano is from Puglia, Southern Italy. Passionate about music since the age of 7, Mario has explored many genres of music, from blues to rap, from hip hop to jazz, from rock to celtic music, to funk. His ultimate passion, however, lies in songwriting and performing in his native language. "In my songs, I try to mix up different kinds of music (although I rely mainly on jazz and blues) with the Italian songwriting tradition", explains Mario. "My songs are in Italian and usually talk about globalisation, precarious working conditions, precarious loves and technology and the impact these have on us – ordinary people – and our way of living together."
Mario regularly performs his original songs on stage under his family name, Pagano. "I like to perform in small bars and cafés, usually just piano and voice", adds Mario, "and I like to say that I write 'music for small places', because these are usually cosier places, where people can get to know each other better." Three of Mario's original songs, named 'Ryanair', 'Cara Giulia' and 'Un piatto di coriandoli', have now been produced professionally in Turin by Paolo 'Fractae' Caruccio, and can be found on all the main digital music platforms.
In addition to his life as a musician, Mario is a postdoctoral researcher in European Private Law at the University of Amsterdam. His research at the moment focuses on the contribution that EU public procurement law can give to support and enhance the European social economy. Juggling between the rigour of law and the creativity of songwriting, Mario views the future as full of opportunities. "At the moment I am working on my first 'Extended Play' – including six new original songs – which is being produced in Florence by Giacomo Anichini, and will be released in 2024!"
Cara Giulia, 2020
Mario explains: "This is a song I wrote for my sister Giulia. We have not lived under the same roof for many years but there are so many memories that came up while writing this song. These memories mainly relate to our long summers by the sea in Puglia, when we were kids. This song was released in September 2020, along with a video shot in the surroundings of our hometown in Puglia". Listen to the Spotify version of this original song here.
Mario explains: "Ryanair is a song about long-distance relationships, which are usually nurtured through the cheap flights of the most famous European airline company. This is my first single and it was released in June 2020, during the pandemic." Listen to the Spotify version of this original song here.
Un piatto di coriandoli, 2020
Mario explains: "The translation of the title in English would be 'A dish of confetti', and it is a song about the end of a love story. When an important love story ends, we are not entirely conscious, our mental state is unstable and we go through different emotional states, in a constant shift between reason and madness. This song tries to describe this constant shift." Listen to the Spotify version of this original song here.