Piero Perelli: “The sound of the drums can create worlds”

Piero Perelli: “The sound of the drums can create worlds”

Piero Perelli is not only an international level drummer, but he is an explorer of sound. A musician who transforms the sensations he has experienced in certain places into vibration and percussion and returns them below new shape to the listener. With those wands he is a magician. It’s as if the drums, in his case, were a window overlooking a changing world. Can you get excited and travel at the same time listening to nine drum tracks? His first solo album, “Night”is the answer and represents a work of pure sound research. The project, coming out on March 15th for Stellare and L’Amor Mio, it is a journey that does not forget its roots. “I live in Tuscany, surrounded by naturefor me the sound of the drums is strongly linked to the earth. Drums are a visceral instrument: in many cases it is thought to be a pure accompaniment, but in reality it shapes the sound of a song and has a strong emotional connotation”, says the artist.

Perelli has developed a very personal drumming style, which has led him to collaborate with world-renowned producers and artists. In recent years he has worked with Eddie Vedder, Glen Hansard and Cat Power on the music for the film “Flag Day” by Sean Penn. “It was a connection possible thanks to Hansard: I jammed with him after we met in Lucca and then we always stayed in touch, also working together on his songs and accompanying him on tour. She asked me to collaborate on the music for the film. Besides being a great artist, he is a wonderful person,” she says. Vedder? “We worked with him, Hansard and Cat Power remotely, connecting multiple styles and realities, exchanging ideas and files“, goes on.

Perelli has also collaborated with Rodrigo D’Erasmo for the compositions of the soundtrack of the docufilm winner of the 2023 Nastri d’Argento award, “Sergio Leone, the Italian who invented America” ​​on the great director. He also recorded with Don Antonio and the Graces for the compositions of the Netflix docu-series, “Wanna,” based on the story of Wanna Marchi. Since 2023 he has been touring with Vinicio Capossela after recording his latest album, “Thirteen Urgent Songs”. Also in 2023 she undertook an extraordinary tour in Europe and the United States, performing in the most prestigious theaters in the world such as Radio City Music Hall in New York, Ryman in Nashville, Atlanta Symphony Hall, Glastonbury Festival and many others with Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, celebrating the 15th anniversary of the film “Once”, winner of the Oscar for best song.

“To make it clear how much the places I visit and the emotions I feel end up in my music, I can say that in my first album there is a song called ‘Santa Cristina’ which was born after a trip to Sardinia – recalls Perelli – there is a mysterious Nuragic well temple there called the Sacred Well of Santa Cristina which, through a triangular staircase, leads underground and you can see your shadow reflected in the water. I tried to transform that type of very strong sensation into sound”.

Perelli, manipulating drones and drums with effects, talks about the contrast between “dark and light, yin and yang, night and day”, and wants to represent the constant search for balance in life and artistic creation. The album is about drums, but not It looks like battery. “In fact it is like this – he smiles – has a more orchestral approach. I play with the effects and give myself total freedom which is the same I want to have when I present it live. As all my songs are real dialogues with the places I have visited, the concerts will be too. Also improvisation as always, it has a central role in my compositional side.” Drummers important to your training? “Jay Bellerose, Aaron Sterling, Charlie Watts, Max Roach”, he reveals. Still on the album: “I had it ready for a year and a half, two – concludes Perelli – fI listened to the songs to my friends, they were the ones who told me ‘maybe here is material for an album’. When I toured the United States, I listened to concerts that embraced a certain approach to music, which is the same one that I have always pursued, that of musical discovery, of exploration. The album was born in the sign of this awareness”.