A passion for music and an emotion-tinged vocal quality has made Salvatore Adamo one of the most commercially successful singers in Europe and one of the most famous Italian immigrants living in Belgium. Since his debut album, Vous Permettez Monsieur, transformed him into an internationally recognized celebrity, Adamo has sold over 80 million copies of his albums worldwide. Adamo, who emigrated to Belgium with his parents at the age of three, was raised in Jemappes and later moved to Brussels. A bright student, Adamo was able to avoid the coal mining industry that lured many Italian immigrants to Belgium and concentrate on his academic and musical studies. Adamo's influences included the music of Victor Hugo, Jacques Prevert, and George Brassens, and the Italian canzoetta and tango. While he recorded a collection of songs from Napoli, Adamo has sung in his adopted language of French. In the mid-'60s, he reached his commercial peak, placing a number of songs at the top of the music charts including "Sans Toi Mamie" in 1963 and "Vous Permettez Monsieur," "Quand les Roses," and "Dolce Paola" in 1964. He released a string of live albums and compilations throughout the '60s and '70s, but his career trailed off in the '80s, his style being no longer fashionable.