Have you met any American musicians that you admire on the tour?
Outside of the Tour I had the pleasure in NYC to meet a great American Jazz musician and new friend, Chuck Mangione (“Feels So Good”), and his beautiful wife.
Are you enjoying American audiences, food, women?
I’ve enjoyed the American audiences. They are a lot warmer and open than I had expected. About the food, unfortunately, for Americans I’m Italian ahahahahah. (Editor’s Note: Obviously he did not have Brooklyn Pizza^_^). But I’ve to say thanks to Chuck Mangione and his wife for taking me to a very nice place in NYC and Tony Renis for an incredible Italian Restaurant in DC.
American Women? Mmmmm who knows…..
How many guitars do you use for each performance?
Generally 6, 2 Les Paul custom, 2 Stratocaster vintage reissue, 2 classical guitars.
Which guitars did you get from Japan thru Rinkya?
Thru Rinkya I’ve got some Burny Les Paul models, very nice Japanese guitars that I like.
Are you still able to find the time to add to your Grendizer collection with your busy schedule?
Yes, thanks to the Internet , I can find a couple of minutes in the Hotel before I sleep. I recently won some rare Popy UFO Grendizer toys that I can’t wait to add to my collection when I return home to Roma. But I lost a lot of Yahoo!Japan auctions because of the jet leg, sometimes bad Internet connections, and busy schedule. I forgot about using the Rinkya Auto-Bid System ahahah…
Have you found your “dream” Grendizer toy yet?
No, not yet J
Will you be bringing Il Volo for a tour of Japan in the future?
Yes, of course, probably next year.
Do you have any advice for collectors of Japanese toys and guitars?
Keep buying from Japan. It is the best way to help the Japanese rebuild the country after the terrible tragedy of the Earthquake and Tsunami. The Japanese have given the world so much beauty with their culture and friendship. It is time for the world to give back and say Thank You, Arigatou, and Grazie mille!
Check out the music sites and Facebook Fan Pages of our musicians and Rinkya .
Grendizer Guitar Hero Jurij G Ricotti Goes on Tour
with the New Italian Hit Group Il Volo
Rinkya’s very own Grendizer Collector and Italian Guitar Hero, Jurij Gianluca Ricotti, is currently on a whirlwind concert tour of North America and Europe with Il Volo ( three Italian teenagers who have reinvented the song standard “O Solo Mio “ for a new generation of music lovers).
After the successful Il Volo Concert in Phoenix, Arizona, Jurij graciously agreed to share his thoughts with our Rinkya Staff about the tour, the music, and, of course, Grendizer.
Jurij, what does the name Il Volo mean?
Ciao Everyone! Il Volo in Italian means The Flight. In their minds music makes them take flight and the audience will fly high along with them.
Speaking of the concept of “flight” aren’t you named after the first Russian Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin? Rather an unusual name for an Italian?
Ahahahah, yes was very unusual especially in 1971 (the 10th celebration of that first human outer space trip). My father who was fascinated by space travel gave me the honor of the name Jurij.
Who is Il Volo?
Il Volo is a Group of 3 teenagers (Gianluca, Piero, Ignazio) with very powerful voices who sing in an Operatic style. They have been described as the Jonas Brothers meet the 3 Tenors. They have also been nominated for two Latin Grammy Awards.
How did you become involved with their album?
The Italian songwriter Franco Fasano suggested my name to Il Volo’s producer, Tony Renis, the famous singer/producer for Celine Dion, Andrea Bocelli, Pavarotti, Julio Iglesias and many others. Tony called me in 2009 for some electronic percussion arrangements for the album and together with Chilean-born Humberto Gatica (the multi-Grammy Award winning audio engineer/producer) we worked on the first album. Thru Michele Torpedine, the Il Volo manager (who discovered Andrea Bocelli and managed him for 17 years) , I became finally involved as a Music Director in the live tour show. They are the best team to work with ever!
What is your personal responsibility for the Tour?
Regarding this tour I’m responsible for the band, stage performances, and their sounds. On stage I’m also the guitar player and do the computer music sequences for the orchestral audio parts.
Is the band you put together from Italy?
The band are all Italian musicians. The most important thing was to have a super clean band free from alcohol, smoke, etc, because the singers are minors. I’ve rehearsed and trained with them only about one month before the tour. It’s very hard to play on these kind of tracks with tempo click changes every 2 bars. The orchestral parts were arranged by William Ross and recorded at Abbey Road in London.
Do you go back to the Recording Studio in Italy, LA or the UK for another album?
I’ve currently recorded keyboards for a new Italian Metal band in Germany. Remastered my first Metal Album in LA for the 20th anniversary, and done other session work in the USA. In Italy I will complete other tracks for the Il Volo tour.
Stay Tuned for Part II of Jurij and Il Volo on Rinkya Rocks, our new Blog feature spotlighting Musicians, Bands, Producers,Songwriters, etc. that are giving and showing their support for Japan thru their musical endeavors. We welcome anyone who is planning a Music tour of Japan to contact us.”