Lisa Nemzo: Angelic Singer on a Mission of Mercy for Lyricist Artie Colatrella

Written by on February 18, 2010 in February 18, 2010 - Comments Off on Lisa Nemzo: Angelic Singer on a Mission of Mercy for Lyricist Artie Colatrella

Veteran performer reaches out to help ailing friend in series of benefits

Lisa Nemzo“A friend in need is a friend indeed!” We all know this is true, and let’s face it, we all need friends – a shoulder to lean on, a helping hand, someone to lift us up when we’re down. Artie Colatrella is a gravely ill poet and lyricist who needs all the friends he can get, and a true friend is what Artie has in Lisa Nunzo. Lisa, a seasoned singer-songwriter who has had a colorful, respected career both in the United States and Europe, has been gratified to collaborate on songs with Artie, including, recently, “Baby Don’t Hurt Me” and “All At Once.”

Like Lisa, Artie has worked in show-biz for a long time, lending his talent to films and  TV shows, including  “Staying Alive,” “Felicity” and “Party of Five,” but during his lengthy career, the longtime Venice resident never really managed to acquire a decent health insurance plan, like so many others in the music industry and in society at large. Since 2007, Artie has been deathly sick with renal (kidney) cancer, unable to afford treatment on his own. Although early diagnosis and treatment might have resulted in better care, containment, and outcome, Artie has been badly failed by the so-called “healthcare system,” neglected and  flailing in a bureaucratic morass that has left him barely hanging on to life. The sad details are recounted by Lisa in her “Artie’s Story” video “webisode” below:

In response to her partner’s plight, Lisa has taken vigorous action to  beseech aid for Artie, both online and in person. For instance, last Saturday Lisa stepped up to the microphone on Artie’s behalf at a cozy Valley nightspot known as Artie ColatrellaKulak’s Woodshed, and she has upcoming benefit gigs slated for Thursday, Feb. 18 at the Montclair Women’s Cultural Arts event in Oakland (1650 Mountain Blvd., Oakland CA),  and at Pangaea’s Café in Sacramento on Fri., Feb. 19 (2743 Franklin Blvd., Sacramento CA). But the good news for Angelenos is that the lovely chanteuse will return to the Southland to perform, with a host of others, on Tuesday, March 23, at the Artie Coltrella Benefit Birthday Show, to be held at The Talking Stick in Venice, 1411 Lincoln Blvd. (310-450-6052, www.thetalkingstick.net). The gala event is scheduled to feature diverse talents that will include Frank Stallone, Peter Bunetta, Freebo, David Woodford, Elsie May Larsen Kunkel, Lee Curreri, Billie Burnor, Lauren Wood, Rosemary Butler, and Mark Islam, MC. Moreover, it is hoped that Lisa will showcase as many songs as possible from her latest solo release, “Unlock My Heart,” an outstanding compilation issued last September not only as a CD, but on vinyl as well! (See www.lisanemzo.com.)