Strumming his joy with his fingers …

Spiru Cauchi was born in 1935 and from an early age developed a love for Italy: the music, art, culture and the Italian way of life. Spiru Cauchi is a well-known and loved character in Ghajnsielem who brings joy to everyone around him through music and musical instruments.

Next month Spiru Cauchi turns 86. As soon as we set foot on the doorstep of his house in Ghajnsielem, Spiru’s love for Italy and all that is Italian was obvious, in particular music and literature. We were told that this love was born from childhood through the radio.

“It started when I was young. We had the radio at home and we listened to Italian songs, Claudio Villa, Aurelio Fierro and since then I felt that romantic language enter my soul which for me was the start of my love affair with Rome and Italian music. Opera, light music, classical music. Number one hits too which I still follow them to this day. So far I have never stopped playing Italian music or Italian books. ”

From music he switched to Italian art and literature.

“The famous sculptures, paintings like Michelangelo, Raffaello, poets like Torquato Tasso, Dante Alighieri, Francesco Petrarca. If I start I will never finish!”

We noticed Spiru’s face light up when he mentioned the Eternal City, Rome, which he intends to visit again soon.

“We always travel to Rome. We went 30 times. Rome is always my choice destination and I walk everywhere because in Rome every corner tells a story …. Now I intend to go to the Palatino which belonged to the Romans who had palaces overlooking Circo Massimo where the races were held. It’s priceless up there. ”

His love of music led Spiru to start playing various instruments, including the accordion, mandolin, and guitar. He plays everything by ear!

Back in 1960, as a telephone operator, Spiru spent three years working in Malta and living in Valletta. He played and sang at the Premier, and met the Italian singer, Tony Dallara.

“Back in 1960 Tony Dallara had come to Radio City in Ħamrun and since I used to sing in Malta, he called me to play as a guest singer at Radio city.”

Before the Covid pandemic broke out, Spiru would regularly go to cheer up the elderly at Dar Sant’Anna.

“That’s the only satisfaction I have. I consider it a form charity that every fortnight, for 20 years, I played for the elderly. It’s the only thing I’m happy about that I did something altruistically to cheer up other senior citizens like me.”