Zeljko: Hello Roberto and thank you for your time for this interview and thanx to Marc Fruttero who helped me to get me in contact with you. I am glad we could have a chat about your music and work. Roberto, could you introduce yourself, who is Roberto Calzolari?
Roberto: Roberto Calzolari was born on 01-05-1955 in Santa Margherita Ligure Italy, zodiac: Taurus and…stubborn as a bull. Diploma of Piano and Keyboards at the music Conservatory, N. Paganini of Genoa-Italy, and lived with Adriana for a long time.
Zeljko: Dyva is a duo with you and Massimo Traversoni. Can you tell me how you met each other and when? And few words about Massimo please.
Roberto: Yes DYVA is a Duo, but in our songs we frequently introduce a lady singer, the vocalist we have now is called M VENICE. Max and me, met in 1976 when we created our first Band, Max was born on 04-07-1959 in Camogli Italy, zodiac: Cancer, and live with her wife Pinuccia and his children Luca and Jessica.
Zeljko: At the beginning of your friendship and music career you have been perfoming Rock music and then you started with Dance. Is there any special reason why you leave Rock and started to play Dance? I am pretty much glad for that decision of yours and I am sure many fans are too! ? Without that we couldn't have songs like „I Know“ is!
Roberto: Yes, at the beginning we played only Rock and PopRock, live stage, always songs written by Max and me, but during the concerts people prefered dancing our songs with more rhythm, so we decided to make Dance music (Thank you for the love you feel for our songs).
Zeljko: In the 1983, when you two started to play Dance, was the beginning of the special era of Italian Disco music, Italo Disco.
Roberto: Oh yes, when we met Roberto Zanetti (Savage), that had just published “Don' Cry Tonight”, he told us future would have been of Dance music, therefore we started to write the first Dance tracks. From that day we’ve haven’t stopped making music anymore and also today our productions are devoted to that sound. Many years have passed by, but playing Dance music still makes us feeling shivers.
Zeljko: Oh Mama Tonight In the same year, 1983, you made your first Italo song „Oh Mama Tonight“. It was realeased only as promo single. Why? And for which label song failed to appeared? Was problem for you to find appropriate publishing company for your songs?
Roberto: “Oh Mama, Tonight!” had not to be publish as a promo but as Disco Mix, unfortunately the Label Bootlegs had financial problems and did not publish the record that was already been pressed. To set “Oh Mama, Tonight!” free, we needed 15 years of legal actions and more money….
Zeljko: Legendary Discomagic published song „I Know“ on Technology label in 1987. Can you tell me please how many copies of „I Know“ exists? Some time ago I saw on eBay that this records have been sold for lots of money, for 630 us$! It's a pretty lots of money and I guess you must be very proud that your song worth that much!
Roberto: No, we have no idea of how many copies of “I Know” exist, surely not a lot, and unfortunately we don't have them. We are surprised and proud now, and we remember that Lombardoni, boss of Discomagic didn't want to publish “I Know” because he believed people wouldn’t like it. Time creates unbelievable situations!
Zeljko: In your Discography we could see that you, after 1987, released song „Cannery The Canary“ in 1990. Between 1987 and 1990 have you made any other Italo song? It's pretty big time gap without any new song. Is there any special reason for that?
Roberto: “Cannery The Canary” waited for a long time to be published, you can notice the MIX contains very different versions. In those years, demanding of Italo Dance started to go down, and it happened before any other style of dance music we didn't like came. So we went on with live staging and writing songs, but we did't like publishing at that moment.
Zeljko: I am wondering Roberto, in your Italo Disco career you haven't released lots of Italo Disco songs. Only few. Why is that so?
Roberto: Yes, we have published very little and we are sorry, but nowadays there are too many people that want to change our songs with their personal style, and we don't like it. However we’ve written a lot of songs and we try publishing them all, day after day. We have to thank KING-O and Flashback Records.
Zeljko: I guess you were going on concerts during 80's and you met some other Italo Disco artists. Can you tell me about that more please?
Roberto: Ok, we’ve played with more artists of the ’80, on tour in Discotheques, and we apologize if there’s anybody that we’ve forgotten: Savage, Martinelli, Albert One (at the beginning Jock Hattle), Den Harrow, P.Lion, Ago, Alberto Carrara, Bagarre, Baltimora, Gary Low, Gazebo, George Aaron, Joe Yellow, Krisma, Lee Marrow, Ryan Paris, Scotch, Styloo, ecc.
Zeljko: Could you perhaps say your favorite Italo artist? And why do you consider him your favorite one?
Roberto: The same question as previous but about your favorite italo track?
Zeljko: Did you have wish to work in the 80's with some other Italo Disco artists and you didn't have the chance?
Roberto: And we would have already liked working with many others, but perhaps, at that time, they were too famous. However, in the 90s we published many maxi-singles with Roberto Zanetti and his Label DWA.
Zeljko: Among you and Massimo, is there anyone else who was the part of your Team in the 80's? Anyone familiar to Italo fans?
Roberto: Only Max and me.
Zeljko: When you decided and why to establish your own label company, „Danceland“?
Roberto: We needed to create our projects without influences from other Labels, Danceland is our private land, our Paradise island.
Zeljko: Your projects for „Danceland“ are?
Roberto: Danceland will release, in collaboration with Flashback by KIMMO SALO, all old Italo tracks, forgotten in the drawers, and in collaboration with Universal Music Italy and other Labels too (G Records by Gallotti Domenico, Melodica Records, ecc.). New projects of all genres, Pop, Dance, House, EuroDance, etc.
Zeljko: How come you decided to re-release your old songs for Flashback Records in 2003 and 2004? Perhaps nostalgic for Italo Disco is involved? And can you tell me a bit about your work with Kimmo Salo, the head of Flashback records? Your latest Italo Disco project is Marc Fruttero. You made for him song „If You're Feeling Blue“. It's pure Italo Disco sound and I wonder do you have in your „archive“ some other songs already wrritten but not yet published? If you do have, what are your plans for near future?
Roberto: KIMMO SALO tried to find us, he came and suggested publishing our old but beloved songs and we’ve always accepted, we'll be always grateful with Kimmo for that. MARC FRUTTERO’s project of singing one of our songs “IF YOU’RE FEELING BLUE” , has amused him a lot. We hope to create a lot of surprises in future.
Zeljko: What are your plans for coming weeks and months?
Roberto: We have now published, a single for the Melodica Label with two songs “FLYAWAY” and “RUNAWAY” by UMA69, this record in many charts around the world. In Italy now, a CD by PIANO MAN, title AMNESIA, for G Records-Universal Music Italy, 16 songs “only PIANO” written, played and produced by Max and me, shortly two singles and a CD will be published, we’re working on it now. We’ll publish the whole news on our Site www.danceland.it
Zeljko: Thank you Roberto for your time and for this interview. All the best to you and to Massimo. Your fan Zeljko.
Roberto: Thanks to you and the entire love for Italo Dance, and thanks to every Italo Lover too. ROBY & MAX
© March 2006 Zeljko Vujkovic - All rights reserved