From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Massimo Ranieri (born Giovanni Calone, May 3, 1951), is an Italian pop singer, film and stage actor. He was born in Naples (at Santa Lucia), the fourth of eight children in the family. When he was 10, young Giovanni would sing at restaurants, wedding receptions, etc. He was discovered by a music producer about 4 years later and was flown to New York to record an EP under the name of Gianni Rock. He recorded 4 songs in 1964: Tanti auguri signora, Se mi aspetti stasera, Non chiudere la porta, and La Prima Volta. None of the records were successful, because young Giannis voice was changing. Two years later, he would later re-emerge under his new stage name, Massimo Ranieri. In 1966, he made his TV debut singing Bene Mio. A year later, he made another TV appearance singing, Pietà per chi ti ama. In 1968, he recorded 2 more songs: Da Bambino, Ma Lamore cosè and Preghiera. But it wasnt until 1969, when he really became successful and became a teen idol making all the young girls scream for him, when he sang O Sole Mio on live TV.