History of my band
Leo and L'Orca met in the Pianura Padana of northern Italy in 1990. They were playing together in a promising band influenced by new wave English groups of the late 1980's and by the Italian post new wave scene. The group licensed a few demos and played extensively until the middle of 1992.
At this time Leo and Ric started experimenting acoustic sets. The wind was rapidly changin'; the need for a different sound led soon to drastic line-up changes; the keyboards were definitively abandoned while the guitar became the leading instrument. After a trip to the USA in 1992, the discovery of the Seattle sound, influenced the future artistic journey. With the new name of Godiva, they played in the north of Italy from 1993 to 1995. In the same years, an original acoustic repertoire was steadily growing, and performed live in separate unplugged gigs. In 1995, during the recording sessions of their first CD, the group members went down different roads (godiva music package).
The unplugged activity was instead carried out intermittently until 2003, when Leo and L'Orca decided to give a new impulse to this world, working under the name of The Trees. After a couple of years spent in Vancouver (BC), L'Orca was greatly inspired to tell new stories. These were fused together with the mellow sound of the acoustic guitar, and with electronic loops in their first work: "Del Vecchio Continente", in Italian. L'Orca left for Cleveland, OH in the middle of 2003. The lyrics changed from Italian to English. The sound evolved gradually; from electronic drums accompanying acoustic ballads, to electronic insertions and noises crossing the path traced by the words in the new work "Cherry Blossom", released in 2005.
The CD contains tracks dated up to the middle of 2004, and is presented in two parts: Indian Summer, with the acoustic imprinting of the origins, and Turning Leaves, strongly contaminated with electronic influences. All the tracks are stories of life. Indian Summer tells the end of a broken love story with the illusion to recover it before it fells apart, just like the few warm days that anticipate the cold winter. Turning Leaves are some other girls catching fire and disappearing, just like the color of the leaves. There are also few snapshots of English life, resulting of Leo's experience in UK. The contact with the Cleveland music scene has had significant consequences on L'Orca's singing style and to the entire sound of the group. The work of L'Orca and Leo at opposite ends of the ocean, has led to a mix of different musical impressions and musical compositions, influenced by two different cultures.
2006 brought in the collaboration of the band with Jennifer Gray, a talented singer from Cleveland, OH, and Paolo Pansera, a published photographer from Bergamo, Italy. In September the band releases East West Center World. A work more oriented towards electronic sounds, evolving from Turning Leaves.
The opening track Dead Raccoon is the testimony of a mind status. It was written in Washington, DC, while sitting on the stairs of the Lincoln Memorial, similar to Mont Martre from the first CD which was written while sitting on stairs in Paris, watching the city go by. All of the other songs are love stories which talk about human discoveries and searching for love. Paolo Pansera gives his own interpretation of the music of the band through his pictures taken from the East side of the globe.
The second half of the year represents a period of total collaboration with different artists for the band. While L'Orca continued his activities with people in Cleveland (among them a couple of new songs with AJ with whom he recorded In my house for Cherry Blossom), Leo gets in contact with an old friend, Vitto, who also played a few acoustic songs with the Trees at the CD release party on Garda Lake.
The result of L'Orca's many collaborations is El Pirata Del Mediterraneo, his first solo CD.
In 2007 L'Orca moves back to the old continent. The band joins the group GAAM Factory, a collaboration of artists from different fields (food, art, music and fashion).
About the songs of El Pirata Del Mediterraneo
Pequena llena de amour - The summer of 2005 was full of passion. There
was a secret place where we used to meet late in the night. Madison, the
apartment complex where I lived was the playground for our story made of
trust, fear, compassion, misunderstandings, fights and, probably, lies
(I have not yet figured out). I thought nobody would have made me loose
it but she did. For sure she was able to surprise me every day with
something new and maybe one day I will write everything she told me as
if it were something worthy to share.
Mi manchi - At the beginning of 2005, I had a long distance
relationship. The lyrics of this song are phone messages sent by her.
They also refer to my passion for the puppies and my continuous visits
to the pet shop, and to the beautiful love story of Antonio and Sonia.
During those months, her brother lived and worked with me in Cleveland.
Quanto te amo - This was part of my first never released solo CD
"Indian Summer", and it is one of the songs that never made it to The
first CD, "Cherry Blossom" - I think it was too personal to be part of
It talks about my love for Vancouver, BC and my last period when we left
to go back to Italy. It is one of the first songs I wrote in Cleveland,
during probably the darkest period of my life. Is not it funny? My first
six months in Cleveland were the worst six months of my life. The last
six months have been the best six months of my life...
Good man / In my pyjama - At the beginning of 2005, I visited my beloved
city Vancouver, BC. It was the first time that I was there by myself. It
was a very tough experience. We had our usual BBQ at Richard and Sue's
house and I had the opportunity to see some of my old friends. I stayed
at Richard and Barbara's too. I have to thank them both for helping me
go through the healing process. For this and for your friendship, I love
La suerte es loca - This is a real story, something that really
happened to Gianni. Who else other than John could recite it for me on
Esperanza - Hope The summer of 1995 was a very intense period to write
music. I was mainly playing acoustic sets with Marco. Leo was not
playing with us anymore. We wrote and recorded this song that talks
about common visions among friends. It is one of the two songs I ever
wrote that talks about the passion for the people of my same
I would have wanted Parker to sing it and I ended up working with
Jesse put a few magnificent arrangements into it and Mike also gave a
kick to it with his drums. The lead guitar is still the same, since ten
Grandetetta - In the end of 1995, I wrote this song that
talks about the dreams my friend Gianni and I have in common. During
this time, he was in
a crisis with Robby. The song was originally played and recorded by
Marco and Gabri,
during the last period of L'Orca's previous band Godiva Acoustic. Mexico
was the dream and Mexican food was the taste. We used to go to La Torre
Antigua in Bastiglia, Modena and to the La Piedra Del Sol in Bologna.
Square house - In December 2005, after seventeen years together,
Gianni and Robby got married. The next step will probably be to have
kids. I will put their picture on my fridge, together with those of
Menoz's kids, those of George's daughter and those of other friend's
kids. It seems like that most of my friends are settling down and I keep
making the choice to travel the world.
Toward Naussa - The song was written at the end of 1994, after a
vacation at Parhos, Greek island. That summer was really special. For
the first time, I was on vacation with my best friend and my other great
friends from Tuscany. For many years I thought that it was the best
vacation I ever had. The song was originally played and recorded by the
most performing line up of Godiva Acoustic with Marco and Leo. This
version has been reinterpreted by Jessse in a Bossanova version. When I
listen to it, I remember the beautiful times at the Opa! On West Sixth
Cleveland, where we started our gatherings at the beginning of 2006.
Jesse was there, playing for us.