How does it feel being Gruppo Terroni's first music director?
It’s hard to explain. On the one hand I had been freelancing for Terroni for almost 15 years and on the other, I never imagined having a full time position like this. It feels like the logical extension of what I was already doing, and the culmination of my life’s work, and at the same time an unbelievable dream.
What do you enjoy most about being Gruppo Terroni’s Music Director?
What I think I enjoy the most about being music director is the challenge of taking what I do as a dj, and trying to scale that up and implement it across the entire company with multiple locations that each have a distinct personality.
What was it like working with Ele on our new location playlists?
Working with Ele was great. We were definitely in sync with our vision for how the vibe should be, and I think we both turned each other onto some great new music.I was actually blown away by her musical knowledge. Another fun layer was me “discovering” songs for the first time that Elena had grown up with, giving her a chance to reconnect with the music she hadn’t heard in years. That was a really cool aspect of the project.
Have you discovered any Italian artists/genres when creating our Terroni playlists with Ele that inspire or surprised you?
Before taking my deep dive into Italian music, I was aware of the rich history in disco and other dance music formats, but I couldn’t believe how many amazing 70 & 80’s AOR/Yacht Rock songs were out there. I discovered some amazing gems from Enzo Carella, Alan Sorrenti, Lucio Battisti as well as many others. By far the standout tune I stumbled onto however was called Elena by Cosimo & The Hot Coals!!! I mean come on, how does this even exist!?!
Which is your favourite location to play at?
I love playing at all the locations and appreciate the subtle differences between them, but I have to say Adelaide is my favourite. I’ve been djing there since the very first day it opened in Dec of 2007, and I can honestly say I’ve spent more time in that building than anywhere else in this world save my childhood home.
Favourite Terroni Dish?
Favourite dish: this is tough as it changes over time but I think I’d say The Garganelli Gepetto, not only delicious but it feels to me like an iconic Terroni dish with a rich history (named after Vince sr etc). Garganeli is also an all time fun pasta shape!
Pasta or Pizza?
What is your favourite Terroni memory?
Oh man there’s so many so I’ll just go with a recent one….this years staff holiday party, it’s like 2:45am and security is really trying their best to get a properly “festive” crowd out and on their way home…I played Umberto Tozzi’s Gloria and just watched the majority of the Terroni brain trust rush the stage and dance away furiously. The bosses literally shut the party down, It was pretty magical.
What is your favourite genre to play?
My favourite genre to play would be right in the sweet spot between funk/disco sounds and smooth 70’s rock. And Italo Disco of course!
What or who inspired you to pursue music?
My parents loved music. I was taking cello lessons by age 4 and my brother and myself were constantly exposed to music and brought to all manner of performances from opera, to the symphony, to jazz clubs. That and just how amazing the pop music was in the 80s, I mean it’s Prince, Madonna, Bowie, Michale Jackson, Bruce Springsteen etc as well s all the cool new wave 80s bands coming out of the UK…how could a kid not fall in love!?!
What's your go-to feel-good song or artist?
Probably Billy Joel or Steely Dan
What advice do you have for young artists wanting to make a career in music?
Not sure I’d say I’m qualified to give too much advice other than the usual platitudes of hard work and being passionate about what you do. One thing I would say is this: find your niche, success for you might not look like success for someone else, there’s many different paths to take so don’t try and copy anyone else.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
There are so many it’s hard to pick one but I will say that opening a corporate account for Terroni at Long & McQuade felt like a career milestone haha. Anyone who grew up playing in bands, DJing, or throwing events can relate, I’m sure.
Which of Gruppo Terroni’s weekly music events would you recommend a friend to check out first? Asking me to choose between any of my DJ’s nights is like a parent choosing between their children, but I’ll say that either of our live Jazz music nights at Bar Centrale and Spaccio East (both curated by the very talented Jack Zorawski) are truly amazing!