Alessandro Gatto aka LLEO is an Italian Music Director, DJ and Music Composer. He strongly believes that music is an international language that can be understood by everyone and that is like a mission that reminds to people about the beauty that surround us.
TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT YOU AND YOUR BACKGROUND. HOW DID YOU START YOUR PASSION FOR MUSIC?
When someone asks me about my person I always take it very seriously. I like to introduce me as a person who is highly aware on what is happening around himself. It’s not necessarily about details, which are important, but for which reasons things happens. I’m deeply passionate about philosophy and psychology and these two subjects push me to work on my sensitivity everyday and improve the perception of what is the world and the society I’m living in.
In our era the majority of people live their sensitivity as a defect, as it’s not easy to manage. On the other hand,I started to understand and live it like a big value and that is what makes the difference, in my life and in my job.
I’m convinced that my passion for music came as a need. I always been someone who liked to share the feeling of joy because I think happiness can’t be reached without sharing beauty with other human beings. When I listen a song I like and I receive this amazing feeling of goosebumps, I dream everybody could experience the same. So music came for me as a “mission” to help others to cool-down their heavy thoughts of the day and remember themselves that we are in this world to enjoy the beauty that surrounds us.
HOW DO YOU VISUALIZE YOUR WORK AS A MUSIC COMPOSER?
For me being a producer it’s not necessarily the same as a composer. Being a producer is being someone who has something to say to the world and using music to find an international language to communicate it to others no matter where they came from. My main language is music and in particular, creating the best music situation in a venue. How do I do it?
To be honest, few years ago I had the need to start my adventure into the creation of my personal music and this led me, after 8 months, to create 8 songs which they gave life to my first album called “downtheroofoftheworld” which is going to be available in 2022. Another amazing way I have to express my creativity is through the soundtracking of fashion movies which allow me to work and becoming music consultant for important fashion brands. To name a few, I’ve been composing soundtracks for Vogue, Vionnet Paris and W Korea.
IN WHICH KIND OF GENRE DO YOU COLLIMATE YOUR MUSIC COMPOSITION ?
The answer to this question starts from a concept. The need to labeling (today we would use the word “tag”) everything around us is a need that we use to simplify our reality, but what if we can live our life trying not to do it? So, for me labeling is a correct action when your desk is full of papers and you need to put them in a logic order to help you find what you need the next time but the question is: do we need these labels into art?
I will give an example. When I terminated my album I had to take the songs to the mastering studio (the last process of a track is to be normalized and played via any device). The owner of the studio after listening to my tracks told me: ”I like your style but I don’t know to which genre I could assign it. And again he told me: “you should give the tracks those characters that makes them more “electronica” or more “techno” etcetera, although he continued saying it’s difficult to introduce them to the market.
What’s the bottom line? I don’t see my compositions into a specific genre but more as my way of using different techniques to reach what I want to say.
I can say my album have some slow beat but also up beat, it will be full of field recordings that I recorded in my years of traveling around the world. Do we say it’s downtempo? You’ll tell me when you’ll listen to them. Every song has a story and a meaning behind. My genre is all and no one at the same time, it’s my style and surely could have been contaminated by others music productions I liked, but still is my personal interpretation of reality.
I don’t use to follow paths for my music compositions but surely I could be contaminated by other artists I’m used to follow and discover.
HOW AS AN ARTIST TRAVELING AROUND THE WORLD INSPIRED YOUR MUSIC?
This question is very connected to my first answer as I feel my ears as a receiver that help my sight to understand deeply what is going on around me. During travels you meet new people and you see new landscapes but if you pay attention, even the sounds are different in every place. You can try by opening the window of your hotel when you travel and hear the sounds are different to the ones you are used to.
I was born in the city of Venice and to me, living surrounded by water and without cars around me, meant I could let my hearing develop and able to catch more sounds of nature.
Birds and other kinds of animals living in the Venetian lagoon are a distinctive sign for me to understand where I am. If I’d be blind I could say I’m in Venice without being able to see it. In 2012 I had the chance to perform a tour during two winters in South America between the Andes and the Amazon Forest and record a lot of sounds from the cities and from the nature and this inspired me during the composition of my album. So to properly reply to your question, the sound of the nature inspired me the most.
THE PATH OF BEING A DJ AND A MUSIC COMPOSER IS COMPLETELY DIFFERENT BUT HOW DO YOU AMALGAMATE BOTH IN YOUR LIFE?
Being a DJ and being a composer for me are, as you suggested, two different approaches of living in the music world. I would say I live them as periods. Two years ago I had a huge need of express my emotions through the composition because I felt mixing wasn’t enough and, other periods, like now, I feel that choosing and mixing songs are the best ways to satisfy my soul.
The pursuit of the best music creation isn’t for me about making the hit of the year but leave the venue seeing people satisfied and interested to have a chat with me about the sound I chose for them and the reasons why they liked it.
I leave here a little sentence I found some years ago that couldn’t be a better way to express myself.
“Un occhio vede, l’altro sente” - “One eye sees, the other, feels”.
By six years he’s entrusted of the music direction of the Armani Hotel Milano.
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Images provided by Lleo
Credits for the images to Ivan from Cosmic Production