Mike Francis

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Mike Francis
Mike Francis performing at "The Place" in Rome, 22 February 2006
Mike Francis performing at "The Place" in Rome, 22 February 2006
Background information
Birth nameMichele Francesco Puccioni
Born26 April 1961
Florence, Italy
Died30 January 2009 (2009-01-31) (aged 47)
Rome, Italy
GenresSmooth jazz, jazz fusion, pop rock, blue-eyed soul, chill-out, Italo disco (1980s work)[1]
Years active1982–2009
LabelsRCA Records

Francesco Puccioni (26 April 1961 – 30 January 2009), better known under his stage name Mike Francis, was an Italian singer and composer, born in Florence, Italy. Internationally, he was best known for his 1984 hit, "Survivor", and his collaborations with American singer Amii Stewart.


Puccioni formed his first band at age 14 with schoolmates from l'Istituto di Studi Americano in Rome. Under the stage name Mike Francis, he had his first hit with "Survivor" in 1984 and went on to record ten studio albums. Among his best known works is the song "Friends", a duet with Amii Stewart released in 1984 which became a big hit in the UK and the Philippines.

Beginning in 2000, assisted by his brother Mario (Mari-One) and by the Maltese multi-instrumentalist Aidan Zammit, he founded the group Mystic Diversions.[2] The group's songs were featured on many high-profile chill-out and lounge compilations. In addition to new, original song material, it also performed covers of 1970s and 1980s songs like "Float On" (by The Floaters), and "A Warm Summer Night" (by Chic). Together with the three, additional musicians for live sets consisted of Agostino Marangolo (drums), Fabio Pignatelli (bass), Marco Rinalduzzi (guitars), Giovanni Imparato (percussion and vocals), as well as Wendy Lewis and Laura Serra (backing vocals).[3]

His 2007 album Inspired followed the cover of Van Morrison's "Someone Like You", together with Blank & Jones for the compilation album Café del Mar Vol. 12. His website states him as saying: "From that moment many other songs were born[;] in a simple and spontaneous way, simply "inspired"..."[4]


Puccioni died aged 47 on 30 January 2009 of lung cancer in Rome.[5] His last compilation album The Very Best of Mike Francis (All Was Missing) was released just days before his death.



  1. ^ "The Importance of Being Earnest: Celebrating the Godlike Genius of Mike Francis". 5 April 2016.
  2. ^ "Mike Francis – Discografia". www.mikefrancis.it.
  3. ^ "Mystic Diversions – Listen and Stream Free Music, Albums, New Releases, Photos, Videos". Myspace.
  4. ^ "Mike Francis Anthology". www.mikefrancis.it.
  5. ^ Obituary, Corriere (Italian).