Friends, Romans, Music Freaks!
Today, I am with Tommy Vitaly for another Q&A Session. He is the mastermind behind a classical heavy metal project, Tommy Vitaly Project. Now, without further ado…
Lady Obscure: Can you give a little biographical and historical info; who is involved in your project, and how did you guys meet up? You know, how the journey started, what the members were doing before…
Tommy Vitaly: OK! Talking about the albums, I am the mastermind. During the last 4 years I have involved many guest stars in the “Tommy Vitaly” project. Everything started with Rhino on drums. Me and Rhino were friends on the internet and so, I asked him to record the drums for my first album “Just me”. After that, everything came naturally.
I’ve met many of the guys of the band on the web, but sometimes in person too. I had the luck to have great musicians on both albums, like Thomas Vikstro, Mats Leven, David Defeis, Zak Stevens, Vitalij Kuprij, David Shankle,Carsten Lizard Schulz,just to name a few…..
Andrea, the bass player, is a friend of mine since we were young boys. We live in the same city.
This is how my journey started.
Talking about the “live” band, we are 4, Andrea is on the bass, Alessio Gori (Flashback of Anger singer) is on vocals and Matteo Amoroso (ex-Vision Divine) is on drums!
Lady: What does classical heavy metal mean to you, or why you chose this genre basically?
Tommy: I’ve always liked classical heavy metal, power metal and classical music. So it was natural for me to play a mix of metal with some classical element in it. I never plan the music I do in my album. Never plan the genre, and never plan a ballad or an instrumental. Everything comes out in a natural way.
Lady: How did the initial musical and thematic elements evolve?
Tommy: This is the hard part to explain. Where the initial music come from is hard to say. That is inspiration. I don’t know exactly where it comes from. Maybe from another side of the world! LOL! Then there’s an idea, a riff, a melody and I start to work on it…knowing exactly in my mind how it should sound when it will be finished.
It’s a long hard work, but it’s beautiful because you see coming to light what you have inside.
Lady: Are you happy with the album? I mean, what aspect of it do you think you nailed, and what parts do you think you could improve upon?
Tommy: I am happy yes. Could I be not? lol I think we nailed the kind of music we wanted to purpose. I wanted to have a heavy/power metal album with killer musicians, with NO COMPROMISE, no trends, no modern metal sides. And that’s it!
About improving, I think we could always do better, especially about the sounds maybe. But recording with better sounds means to have more money to spend! ah ah!
Lady: How has the overall reception been?
Tommy: The feedback was very good. The album had many good reviews both on webzines and magazines, and many fans contacted us directly, showing their pleasure listening to the album. I really thank all the fans for the great support!
Lady: What are you planning next? Live performances? Album? Touring? Any international tours?
Tommy: We have some gigs planned here in Italy in the next months. But we are trying to arrange some international gigs too. It’s not easy, but I am sure we will do it sooner or later. Next I am writing new songs, and I think in 2014 a new Tommy Vitaly album will come out for sure!!!
Lady: What do you see for your future?
Tommy: About the future, it’s looking pretty good I guess! Another new metal album, always more gigs!! I will never stop writing music, you like it or not! So, there will always be a future for “Tommy Vitaly” music, until I will be on this Earth!
Lady: Which do you find more exciting? Being on the road or studio?
Tommy: Both are exciting, but in a different way. Being on the road is very exciting because of the fans… nothing is so exciting as people singing your song, waiting for your show… and sharing this with your band mates.
Studio life is very nice too, but it is more for the musician. I like to find the right sounds, right mix, arrangements etc… So, I need both sides! ah ah
Lady: Who is composing the songs? Writing the lyrics?
Tommy: I write all the music, arrangements and lyrics, except “Hands of Time” lyrics, written by Todd LaTorre, and Icewarrior ones, written together with a friend of mine.
Lady: Could you tell me about the lyrics, themes and concepts you focus on when you’re writing? How do the ideas come about, and how do they influence the writing process?
Tommy: Usually I wrote the lyrics, and inspiration comes from everyday life, or movies, books, or historical events.
Sometimes I like to write also about emotions, or experiences I had in my life. Sometimes I write before lyrics than music, but sometimes it is the opposite. It all depends on inspiration.
Lady: So what bands do you draw your inspiration from?
Tommy: I draw inspiration from the band I used to listen when I was younger. So, Iron Maiden, Helloween, Manowar, Stratovarius, Savatage and many more. I also like classical music, and maybe this is what takes me to neoclassical in some compositions.
Lady: When you’re writing, what’s more important to you? Catering to the audience or music for its own sake?
Tommy: Well, I never do music for audience tastes. I mean, I compose what I feel, hoping the audience will enjoy. I make music for music! If I wanted to make music for audience, I wouldn’t have done Metal! ah ah!
Lady: Ehahah.. I hear you Tommy! So, when you look back your music career, what do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
Tommy: Nice question. Well, actually I love to see people enjoy my music, and feeling what I feel when I play and compose.
I can’t ask more than going straight to the heart of people with my music. This is the greatest gift from my career.
Lady: Thank you Tommy for this lovely chat!
Tommy: I would like to thank you Lady Obscure for this interview and thanks all my fans, friends and supporters, because you are what give me strength to carry on! ALWAYS METAL!
So, want to read more about what Tommy’s up to? More about his music? Visit his official site and his FaceBook page!