On YouTube, this video was published which I found very interesting.
It is an interview, but also a report, made with Il Volo drummer, Bruno Farinelli.
The interview actually deals with highlighting the job of a drummer on a tour and therefore I will skip overly technical notions. At some point the interview also extends to the master Gianpiero Grani.
I found the video very nice, also to find out a bit about the background of an Il Volo concert.
Enjoy the reading!
At the beginning of the video, the interviewer says he would have liked to have a long interview with Bruno Farinelli, the drummer who played for Il Volo during the World Tour, but since the virus intervened, he had to change his plans and asked Bruno to do reports from where they were playing.
The first question he asked Bruno was to tell about this experience of a great world tour with Il Volo around the world.
Bruno replies that it is a fantastic tour that started, speaking of the Italian part, from Matera, with the PBS Special, which was followed by the Latin American part of the tour, starting from Mexico and they had to take 42 planes in two months.
The interviewer asks Bruno if the set (for the sound) has brought him with him or if each time he has to play on a different one, and if he has had surprises, or if everything went well.
Bruno says I’m in San Diego, with six concerts left at the end of this wonderful American tour.
He says the set (of drums) is extremely simple and they found it there in America. He details all the drums and cymbals, and then says that the cymbals were brought directly from Italy. He says that the real news for him, on this tour, was the introduction of the iPad for reading the songs.
Off-camera we hear the voice of Alessio Guerrieri, stage manager, who in turn explains the connections with the drums and the details requested by Farinelli.
The interviewer asks if they are traveling in America on a tour bus and asks to show if they are really comfortable as told.
Bruno shows the inside of the bus, he says it is like a huge camper, but much more beautiful. He says that the beds are very comfortable and that they have Wi-Fi and all possible and imaginable comforts on board and says, “This is our wonderful traveling home.”
The interviewer says that they have been in wonderful places, famous stages and asks to show some photos of those stages and says that he is very envious of this.
Bruno shows the Microsoft Theater, Bruno says it’s a wonderful view and in the evening there will be 4,500 full seats, and it’s a really nice theater.
Guitarist Andrea Morelli is asked what he and Gianluca were talking about and he replies that they were talking about a CD by John Mayer who shot the video in that theater.
Bruno shows other panoramas of two other stages: Indio and Laval.
Then, he shows a rehearsal with the orchestra made by the master Grani.
He says it is a very important moment, because moving from state to state, they always meet new orchestras to which Giampero must give all the directives before the concert. The master has about a couple of hours to try all the songs. Clearly the orchestra has already received all the songs before, however the rehearsals are a decisive and important moment (Bruno speaks softly so as not to disturb the rehearsals).
The interviewer asks Bruno that, although they are a band, they must also play with the orchestras of the various cities and asks to explain how the whole ensemble works.
The answer is given by the master Grani.
His role is not easy, because he is the pianist and the musical director of the tour, so he has a lot of work and responsibility.
Grani says that the work starts long before the concert, because he has to send all the songs to be played to the orchestra.
He has the entire archive of Il Volo songs and has also the archive of both the band and the orchestra. He says they have to be very organized, because in America they have very tight times for soundcheck, he only has one hour for rehearsals and they absolutely must be done at that time, because otherwise there are fines.
The parts of the orchestra are sent much earlier and delivered to a contact person. This year they also noted the performance variations directly on the parts, and at the end of the concert the sheets of the parts (sheet music) are recovered to be used for the next concert.
During the day of the concert, in addition to taking care of the parts, the band and connecting with the artists, he comes first to organize the work with the orchestras and see the repertoire which is vast because there are 26 songs. So he arrives and has an hour of time to tell the orchestra the basics, and try the more complicated pieces.
Grani says that he arrives before the others to try the more difficult songs – NESSUN DORMA, GRANADA, NO PUEDE SER, MARIA, MATTINATA, CORE N’GRATO – then communicates with the camera men the concert schedule and names the songs of the most classic repertoire which are also the most difficult to perform and film.
During the concert Grani does more things, plays the piano, follows all parts of the orchestra, he with the microphone, communicates with the artists (Piero, Ignazio and Gian), with the band, with the orchestra and with the stage manager, Alessio Guerrieri.
As soon as he rehearses with the orchestra, he arrives on stage, makes the soundcheck with the band, then the orchestra arrives and then they make the soundcheck all together, band, orchestra and artists.
The soundcheck is very fast, because there is little time, but everything is very well organized.
Maestro Grani shows that he uses the iPad, and says it is an indispensable thing, because on his iPad he has all the versions of the songs, those for the band, those for the orchestra, those for him and those for the director. He also has the parts of other Il Volo songs that the boys could change at the last minute, for example he says that Gianluca asked to replace a song that day and this also happens when the concert changes and they prefer to perform certain songs rather than others. Therefore if all these parts of songs were still in sheet music form there would be hundreds of sheets to carry.
The interviewer asks Maestro Grani what characteristics the drummer of the band must have.
Grani replies that playing for Il Volo means having many different styles, we go from pop to classic, so the first thing is versatility and then the ability to adapt to things that are often sudden and all this along always guaranteeing a very high level.
The skill of the drummer, who is very important in pop songs, is in knowing how to follow the other songs with elegance.
Now bass player Pier Mingotti is asked, what he expects from a drummer who plays with you on a tour like this.
He replies that he expects a great musicality, not only the technique.
The guitarist Andrea Morelli says that he is interested in a drummer who loves playing with him, he does not care for an individualist.
The bassist says that the Il Volo concerts are more difficult than others, because each verse is different and therefore the songs must be memorized well.
Even the drummer agrees and says that for them at the beginning it was a challenge, but they are satisfied because they are already at 54 concerts, but it was not easy and together they remember the first “SMILE” saying it was hard !!
In fact, even the guitarist says that it is very difficult for him to follow the part, at a certain point, he doesn’t even look at the iPad anymore, but looks at his companions and plays following the music and the hands of the master.
Then he tells about the difficulty he has with the guitars, which are his, when they encounter very different climates, therefore he has to make some very important adjustments, but everything is part of the game.
The interviewer, asks our drummer a wonderful question, asks what this tour was like on a human level, since he has already worked at high levels, but Italian artists who travel all over the world are very few.
Farinelli replied that it was a fantastic experience, there were no inconveniences, he said that unlike an Italian tour, you have to have great physical-food attention for yourself, try to sleep as much as possible and eat healthy, because it is a physical need, having to travel across time zones.
Then he shows a hotel gym, saying they start their days there.
Last thing, Farinelli wants to explain the diversity between his cymbals …………. but Ignazio intervenes – he, seeing that they are interviewing Farinelli, says that nothing he is saying is true !! (he jokes)
Farinelli, amused, says to him, “Ignazio there are two cases, either you sign me the release or you ruined this 16 minutes of my interview”.
Ignazio puts his hands in his hair and immediately says: “I’ll sign you the release.”
Farinelli laughs and says that this is the best summary of the climate they have during this tour …. Ignazio still intervenes saying that he wants at least 45% and Farinelli, always laughing, says that they give him at least 50% and says that yesterday he and Ignazio played tennis, and says the atmosphere is absolutely fantastic.
He says this is the classic tour you dream about when thinking about America – touring, seeing beautiful places, together with people who you like and know very well.
Thanks and final greetings.
Personally, I found this interview very interesting, but as I am very curious, I went to Bruno Farinelli’s Facebook page and found many of his really nice little posts and I wanted to share them with you.
Sonic Ranch Studio Complex !!! EL PASO!
This place on the border between the United States and Mexico is indescribable.
Six connected studios equipped with all the best you could wish for in an atmosphere that is a color bath! A sensational place where anyone would like to register !!
A “Travel Day”
Really out of the ordinary, a unique experience !!!
SHOW # 13! FORT LAUDERDALE (MIAMI) ….. a unique emotion to play for 7,000 people at the BB&T Center !! It was particularly exciting for the presence of my friend and colleague John Favicchia, but also for the presence, in the first rows, clearly visible from my position, of the very l, very great GLORIA ESTEFAN!
Show # 9! This is the FOX THEATER with its 4,000 seats.
It is one of the most enchanting theaters in America, perhaps the most beautiful
Theater I’ve ever played in!
It was exciting to think how many artists have performed from this stage !!!
….. and now we leave for Chicago !!
DETROIT! This is Motown’s Studio A! It is incredible to think how much wonderful music has been made in this room, with the microphones hanging from the ceiling (mostly in 4 tracks) and the hole in the ceiling for the reverberation (impossible to photograph it, it was not allowed).
The Temptations, the Supremes, Jackson Five, Stevie Wonder ….. these are some of the artists who started here!
And tonight the Fox Theater awaits us !!
This was Radio City Music Hall !!
A fantastic night in a city that I love to die for !! In front of 6,000 wonderful people!
I swear to you that from the stage it is a unique emotion !!!
Goodbye New York ❤️
A typically New York evening:
Let’s go to Greenwich Village to see some shows. How beautiful Greenwich is and my friend Mary rightly thinks of stopping a passerby to capture the moment in front of the Smalls.
Nobody passes …… here is a gentleman …Sorry would you take a picture” ….. “sorry, but do you play the guitar? “…” sorry, but you are Peter Bernstein?”(one of my heroes, an incredible guitarist)
He is surprised, we talk a little bit about Italy, about our tour, and he tells me that his son is called Bruno.
…. And I tell him that my son is named Pietro.
“I hope to play 4 measures with you Peter,” I tell him when I take my leave …… “We hope to play a whole piece,” … he tells me ….. this is NEW YORK.
And tonight we play at Radio City Music Hall !!! ….
I wonder how many times I will still be in a room before going to sleep to thank this wonderful thing called MUSIC! ❤️
I read that Michele Torpedine had personally contacted Bruno Farinelli. I remind everyone that Torpedine is a good drummer, but I believe that after you have read this you will have noticed how important the human side also is during the tour of the boys. In fact, Farinelli himself, says in the video that the band was chosen also considering their socialization ability, so as to create together a nice group, that works a lot, but also has fun while in each other’s company.
And we like this very much.😉
Credit to owners of all photos and video.