Gianfranco Bortolotti

One of dance music’s most colourful ambassadors in the golden period of the late 80s and early 90s, Bortolotti was the name behind many ‘Italo-house’ classics as manager of Media Records. Bortolotti…
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Artist Biography

One of dance music’s most colourful ambassadors in the golden period of the late 80s and early 90s, Bortolotti was the name behind many ‘Italo-house’ classics as manager of Media Records. Bortolotti had originally found himself in the DJ world to supplement his university days. He was initially influenced by DJ Pierre (not the US DJ), learning his craft from him, and when the latter’s career began, actually helped in distributing records. His involvement grew until he too recouped the rewards of a couple of minor hit singles, reinvesting the money in a home studio and founding the Media label. The success of Media allowed Bortolotti to invest in no less than 10 studios - the main complex in Brescia, North Italy, was built on the Motown Records principle, churning out hits at a rate other factories ship beans. Cappella’s breakthrough hit, ‘Heylom Halib’, introduced the insistent rhythms, zany samples, tinkling piano and memorable choruses and catch phrases. This in turn predicted the wave of Italo-house hits (Black Box’s ‘Ride On Time’, Starlight’s ‘Numero Uno’, Mixmaster’s ‘Grand Piano’) that dominated the late 80s dance scene. Media continued to release a unabated flow of hits through acts such as the 49ers (‘Touch Me’), Fargetta (‘The Music Is Movin’’), East Side Beat, Clubhouse, Clock, DJ Professor and RAF. Just as Berry Gordy might have envisioned had he enjoyed access to the technology, the Media set-up ran along strictly businesslike lines, with three main producers (DJ Pierre, DJ Professor or RAF) working on their own floor. Each record was mixed between 15 and 20 times to suit individual territories, an astoundingly efficient and economic approach to making music.