Michael David Benedetti passed away on May 9,2019 from an aggressive and terminal form of cancer.
The youngest of 4, Michael was born in Savannah, Ga. Growing up in a military family, he spent his youngest of his years moving around with his brothers and sisters until his parents, Andrew and Flora Benedetti, settled in California.
Michael grew up in Daly City, went to Olympia Elementary, Fernando Rivera Middle School, and graduated from Serramonte High School in 1977. His passions throughout all those years remained constant; Volkswagens, woodwork, music and guitar.
He continued his education at SFSU where he majored in the Music and Recording Industry (MRI) program. He graduated from SFSU in 1981, magna cum laude, with a degree in sound engineering.
After graduation, he moved into his own flat in SF. He loved the city and spent many years there while he began launching his career as a sound engineer. With San Francisco as his home base, he toured with various artists including Huey Lewis and the News, Luther Van Dross, Tom Jones, and Todd Rundgren. It was during that time Michael met his first wife Joan and they were married.
Michael’s career led him and Joan to Las Vegas where Michael established his own media and sound company, Spaghetti Western. His excellence in sound production was showcased in many of the major Las Vegas casinos including Bally’s and the Venetian.
But Michael not only had an ear for music at work, he also expressed his love for it through his guitar playing. Those who inspired him most were Jimmy Page, Todd Rundgren and Eric Clapton. His earliest songs were self-taught and later he attended Blue Bear School of Music in SF, where he developed his own expertise and style that drove his passion and motivation to new heights. His guitar collection and song selections grew to include originals in both categories.
In 2013 Mike and Joan moved to Arizona, where he continued to pour his heart into his work; this time designing sound systems for local music halls, auditoriums and churches; always challenging himself to grow in new ways.
Unfortunately, Michael’s marriage with Joan was not as successful as his career and they parted ways.
However, that would not be the end of Michael’s love story.
That same year Mike reconnected with a long-time friend of over 25 years, Barbara Santa-Ana. “Barbie” was the woman of this dreams, and Michael fell fast and hard! He had never been happier. Michael and Barbie married, and his life and heart were filled with joy again. They did everything together. They had 5 wonderful years where they traveled to Italy, Mexico, Hawaii, San Felipe, Paris, the French Riviera and Greek Islands! With retirement getting closer, Michael and Barbie talked endlessly to everyone about their happily ever after plans to move to Italy. Sadly, Michael never had a chance to live out his retirement dream, but make no mistake, he died a very happy man.
Michael leaves behind his beloved wife Barbie, his 2 sisters Marie and Rita, his brother Tom, his nephews Bill and Andy, his niece Juliann, his Zia Giuliana and Zio Arnaldo, his cousins Luciano and Anna and their families in Italy and his Aunt Rose in New Jersey. In addition, he leaves behind a multitude of friends, co-workers and grateful musicians whose lives he touched, and was a part of, including his loving and faithful dog Sophia.
Michael soul is now in heaven, with his mother and father (Flora and Andrew Benedetti) and all those that went before him, but his spirit remains here with us. A Celebration of Michael’s Life is being planned for this fall in SF and will be announced very soon. In the meantime, his cremated remains rest in peace in Arizona with his wife Barbie.
Always in our hearts Michael. We love and miss you more than you know.