Born in Catania, Balsamo was the youngest of five brothers. In 1964 he moved to Milan, where he started working together with the lyricist Luciano Beretta, composing songs for, among others, Iva Zanicchi and Orietta Berti. In 1968 he made his debut as a singer with the song " Il mio cuore riposa", released under the pseudonym Bob Nero. Balsamo obtained his first success in 1972 with the song "Se fossi diversa", which ranked nineteen in the Italian hit parade. The following year he entered the competition at the Sanremo Music Festival with the song "Amore mio". In 1977 he topped the hit parade with the song "L'angelo azzurro", selling over a million of copies In 1979 he had one another major success with the song "Balla", a mixture of tarantella and disco music. In eighties Balsamo focused on composing, achieving a significant success with the 1988 song "Italia", sung by Mino Reitano at the Sanremo Music Festival.