Once Gino Vannelli‘s mini-tour is finished, a tour where the final stop in Canada is Montreal’s Rialto Theater – it is off to Los Angeles to continue a new part of his career. Fitting because L.A. is where it all started …
” I can’t really say much about it …” Explains Gino. ” It is still under production and negotiations. I am not at liberty to say but I will be on television very soon.”
Television is the end to all means for Vannelli. It was a prime vehicle at the starting line in Vannelli’s musical journey by way of Soul Train and now a second leg begins with a major television show. Something that most Montrealer music stars from the 1970’s cannot boast. Vannelli’s full music sound and his ‘way with the ladies’ – may have something to do with it. The mid-seventies sequined attire – accented by John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever, was right at the time and Vannelli did not take any ‘flack’ from the stereotypical Italian males …
“I never really thought about it.” Laughs Vannelli.’ I never looked at it that way. I just sang the type of songs that were in my heart. In my mind. I don’t think I really wrote for the women, it just seemed that way. Ballads were part of what was on my mind. One song accentuated another one. As a musician, an artist – a pure artist, a thought process does not take place. It is emotions that write the songs and in that era, those were the type of songs that were written.”
Vannelli did conscientiously let the ‘Italian cat out of the bag’ when he recorded the album ‘Canto’ in 2003. A disc which showcased Vannelli’s vocals in Italian, French, Spanish and English. Vannelli was also commissioned by the Vatican to perform for Pope John Paul II and the song ‘Parole Per Mio Padre’ is a tribute to his late Father.
” That album took me a while.” Explains Vannelli.” I had to learn to sing properly in the Italian language. It was a challenge because I did not want to have any Canadian or Montreal accent on the recordings. I tried to shake my Italian dialect so it took me a bit. That album was a milestone as far as what I was allowed to do as an artist.”
These days, Vannelli has an ear to the ground for all the new music that is circulating via the airwaves. He is into Americana and Roots music and attributes the resurgence of those types of music to the increasing expensive nature for musicians to tour and record.
” In Oregon, like everywhere – there are a lot of artists and concerts to go and see. I like a lot of Folk – ish stuff and am very interested in people writing real music with good storytelling. I think a lot of the Americana stuff is getting popular because artists can do a solo act or a duo. It is expensive to put on shows. The huge tours of the 1970’s are impossible these days. In order for new artists to tour, the simplest way to do it is with an acoustic guitar.”
Vannelli’s show in Montreal is modernized. His set list will start in 1973 and continue with some new songs that no one has heard yet. Vannelli takes a direction in rehearsals and pretty much sets the music before the tours start. That does not mean there will not be any spontaneity. Licks and rhythms may change and his old stuff will be the same great tunes with an updated version of things within. Gino does not play his CDs live – that would be pretty boring.
” My brother Ross and I take this very seriously. I think that music is handed down as well as ethics. Ross takes the production to heart and he is my brother, which is great, but I have him with me because he is a very talented guy. The show is complicated, we have a horn section – so the production is full and a lot involved. A lot of Jazz. Pop and Rock. Of course the rythym section is fantastic as always …”
Gino Vannelli will be in Montreal on The 2nd and 3rd of November at The Rialto Theater. Gino Vannelli is coming home.
What else is new …?
- Gino Vannelli; All Those Nights in Montreal. Part Two (keenemusic.wordpress.com)
- Gino Vannelli – All Those Nights in Montreal … (keenemusic.wordpress.com)