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Progressive Rock Interviews

Il Cerchio d'Oro

Interviewed by Gary Hill
Interview with Il Cerchio d'oro from 2013

Can you catch the readers up on the history of your involvement in music – both individually and as a band?

Giuseppe Terribile: We love music since the 60s. In 1966 I had my first guitar and my twin brother his first little drum kit (from our parents). Also our friends of the band started studying music (piano and guitars). In those years everything musically changed. It's not possible to think of a life without music, and the people who create and play music are very lucky people. So, growing up with the Beatles and the other bands of that wonderful period, we increased our ability and formed our first bands. I can remember the names: I Poker, I Terribili, Atlantis. . .
MSJ: If you weren't involved in music what do you think you'd be doing?

Giuseppe Terribile: This is a particular question. First of all I can say that music is not (and was not) our main job, so we are involved in different professions. . . who in a bank, who at school or agencies. We had never the opportunity to do (and to earn) with music only. But we are glad we've reached some satisfactions any way. . .(like many professional artists.)

MSJ: How did the name of the group originate?
Giuseppe Terribile: I remember the moment and the place (Franco's home) when we needed a new name for the band. We all wanted an easy name, not so short, and we decided on "Il Cerchio d'Oro," having a "rounding" and fine sound, and represented our faith in music. . . There were a lot of bands with a "metal" connection (Balletto di Bronzo, Rovescio della Medaglia. . .) so our name was a "golden one.” (Il Cerchio d'Oro means the golden ring - like the "marriage ring.”) 
MSJ: Who would you see as your musical influences?
Piuccio Pradal: Italian artists like Lucio Battisti, New Trolls, Le Orme. International ones: Pink Floyd, Queen, AC/DC.

Bruno Govone: Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd and also New Trolls.

Roberto Giordana: Pink Floyd, Deep Purple, The Eagles.

Franco Piccolini:  As regards Italian prog: Le Orme, New Trolls, The Trip. . . then Pink Floyd, Deep Purple, Genesis and Yes.

Giuseppe Terribile: We began with beat, so The Beatles, The Who, then Uriah Heep, Hendrix, New Trolls, Le Orme, The Trip, Osanna, Delirium. . .

Gino  Terribile: Beatles, Beach Boys, Led Zeppelin, Supertramp, Gentle Giant. . . and the Italians: New Trolls, Formula 3, Le Orme, The Trip. . .

MSJ: What's ahead for you?
Giuseppe Terribile: As regards music, considering we have never played as a profession, anyway we have obtained such important satisfactions like many professionals. . . Well. . . if I'll do some more fine concerts and other beautiful recordings I'll be happy at the end of our voyage. . .
MSJ: I know artists hate to have their music pigeonholed or labeled, but how would you describe your music?
Gino Terribile: The term "progressive" was adopted in recent decades. During the 70s  we spoke about "pop" or something like this. We are considered a prog band but prog contains a lot of styles. The main important ones for us are: symphonic, melodic and rock (even if some people say we also play psych, jazz or funky).
MSJ: Are there musicians with whom you would like to play with in the future?
Roberto Giordana: David Gilmour.
MSJ: Do you think that illegal downloading of music is a help or hindrance to the careers of musicians?
Gino Terribile: We come from a different reality. We must accept the nowadays situation (even if negative or positive). I mean, when we were young we obviously bought LP albums and also 7 inch singles and it was a great emotion listening to the music and having a cover to handle at the same time (to admire the picture, the photos or to read the lyrics). Now with downloading it's easy, fast and cheap to enjoy music. But today a real music fan prefers also to buy a CD or even better an LP. The "object" is really important, it doesn’t care if it's expensive, many record collectors prefer also the limited editions. (Our Dedalo e Icaro has been issued also on yellow vinyl with extra inserts.) 
MSJ: In a related question, how do you feel about fans recording shows and trading them?
Gino Terribile: It's easy today to record a concert with every kind of camera or phone (and the quality of reproduction may be excellent, good, or poor), impossible to control this trading Films also on YouTube. I can say some are interesting. Others give a wrong idea of the artist.
MSJ: If you were a superhero, what music person would be your arch nemesis and why?
Piuccio Pradal: This is an unusual question. . . I'd like to be Flash Gordon (with original soundtrack by Queen) but I can't imagine any behavior against nobody.
MSJ: If you were to put together your ultimate band (a band you'd like to hear or catch live), who would be in it and why?
Gino Terribile: Just for a joke. . . a great fantasy prog band: John Hiseman (drums), Tim Bogert (bass), Kerry Minnear (keyboards), Steve Howe (guitar), Roger Hodgson (vocals/guitar). It seems a good mix of technique / melody makers, but I could chose many other artists.
MSJ: If you were in charge of assembling a music festival and wanted it to be the ultimate one from your point of view who would be playing?
Gino Terribile: As regards our "surviving" favorite groups, I could say (strictly chronological order: Beach Boys, Rolling Stones, Townshend and Daltrey of The Who, Ray Davies (never seen him live in concert), Vanilla Fudge (with at least Appice and Bogert), Colosseum, Three Friends (Gentle giant), Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, Page and Plant, The Eagles, Supertramp and Roger Hodgson, Queen's May and Taylor, and the new reformed King Crimson. . . It's enough I think.
MSJ: What was the last CD you bought and/or what have you been listening to lately?
Piuccio Pradal: Museo Rosenbach Barbarica.

Giuseppe Terribile: Aldo Tagliapietra – L'Angelo Rinchiuso.

Gino Terribile:  All Star Tribute to Supertramp - Songs of the Century (and also many reissues on vinyl). We all usually listen to old records.

Franco Piccolini: The Whirlwind – Transatlantic.

MSJ: Have you read any good books lately?
Franco Piccolini: Yes, for sure, it's impossible for me to stay without reading a good book. Mainly I like novels, because they stimulate my fantasy! Lately I've read L'Isola dei Cacciatori d'Uccelli (The Black House) by Peter May, La Casa degli Spiriti (The House of the Spirits) and Eva Luna by Isabel Allende, and actually I'm reading Une Vie by Guy De Maupassant, in the original language, in order to maintain a bit of confidence with French.
MSJ: What about the last concert you attended for your enjoyment?
Franco Piccolini: The last concert that I attended was at the beginning of this year in Milan: great Marillion, a very trendy band, with an emotional and engaging sound.
MSJ: Do you have a musical “guilty pleasure?"
Franco Piccolini: Oh, I'm not sure that it could be called a “guilty pleasure.” When we finished recording Il Viaggio di Colombo, our first real album, the band decided to make an amateur video in a little theatre, all dressed in historical costumes and we played our songs. I was very embarassed about that. I thought that it was not a good production and a musical “mistake.” Honestly I still have all the material to finish that work but I have never done it. Despite this every time I see a short passage of this “movie,” I enjoy it so much and many of my friends appreciate it!
MSJ: What has been your biggest Spinal Tap moment?
Franco Piccolini: Honestly I don't remember a “Spinal Tap” moment. . . even if some years ago, we had a concert in Savona, sharing the (open) stage with Delirium. It was summer, but during the day there was rain and cold wind. It was so difficult to have a serious soundcheck; The microphones caught the sound of the wind, cymbals vibrated by themselves. . . an incredible situation. Fortunately some minutes before the concert started, the weather turned almost to normal and the concert went well. Today, going back to those moments makes me smile, but then I thought we were losers!
MSJ: If you could sit down to dinner with any three people, living or dead, for food and conversation, with whom would you be dining?
Franco Piccolini: This is a strange question! Well, probably I would dine and speak with Leonardo Da Vinci, I'm fascinated by his rinascimental genius. A musical guest could be Jon Lord, a keyboard player that I've loved since my first aproaches to rock; a great innovator! The third could be Obama, the U.S.A. President. I think that he is an intelligent person, who likes music, science and art. His charisma would make it a nice event and I would have the possibility to be charmed by these three people.
MSJ: What would be on the menu?
Franco Piccolini: Culture, humour and intelligence. . . just joking! I'm from Liguria, an Italian region near the sea, but I don't like to eat fish, so I would like to share with them other local typical Ligurian dishes; the famous “Trenette al pesto,” a special pasta with green basil sauce. “Farinata,” a thin oven cooked mix of chickpea flour, water, salt and oil. . . then stuffed artichokes with potatoes. A good ice cream and an original Italian coffee, the espresso! Nothing else, because it is impossible to eat a lot and to reason at the same time. . .
MSJ: Are there any closing thoughts you would like to get out there?
Franco Piccolini: Prog music is a big container. I like to put my sensations, my way to make music and arrange it with all the influences that I received in my 70s inside this container. 

How can we classify this genre? Of course it is prog, but basically it is music!



MSJ: This interview is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2013  Volume 6 at
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