Billy Gray (guitar, vocals)
Joe Vescovi (keyboards, vocals)
Arvid "Wegg" Andersen (bass, vocals)
Pino Sinnone (drums)
Gray and Sinnone quit, enters:
Furio Chirico (drums)
One of many English bands coming to Italy in search of success during the beat-era, The Trip included a young Ritchie Blackmore in their first line-up, along with founder members Andersen and Gray and drummer Ian Broad, but a line-up change brought two italians in, keyboards player Joe Vescovi from Savona (later the leading figure in the band) and drummer Pino Sinnone from Turin.
With a stable line-up the band had a good recording
deal with RCA and released their first album in 1970, and a single taken from
The Trip (sometimes referred to as Musica Impressionistica, from a title on back cover) can't be yet considered a prog album, rather a rock-blues LP, with five long pieces led by guitar and organ. The long opening cut Prologo, is a good introduction to the band's sound that since their early days has always mixed English and Italian-sung tracks in their production.
Also in 1970 the band members acted in the film Terzo canale - Avventura a Montecarlo, a nonsense comedy based on the story of a band trying to get to Montecarlo from Italy and playing the Rome Caracalla Pop Festival in the end.
With Caronte, in 1971, the Trip's sound became much more original, with more space to Joe Vescovi's keyboards. Since the first notes of Caronte I, the opening track, it's clear that a classical influence has enriched the band's sound. The long Two brothers is another highlight of a very important album.
After the second album two members quit the band, with
Billy Gray releasing a solo album, and the band kept on as a trio with new
drummer, the young Furio Chirico from Turin, coming from some important rock
experiences with 60's groups I Ragazzi del Sole and Martò e i Judas.
Atlantide, housed in an ambitious gimmix cover, obviously sees the leading role of Joe Vescovi's keyboards, with the sound veering toward an ELP-like style. The band was now very popular in Italy, and the album's first copies contain a promotional single with a long interview and excerpts from the LP.
The same line-up released the fourth and last album, this time with the short-lived Trident label. Time of change contains yet another step in the band's sound evolution, still keyboard-based but with stronger classical and jazzy influences.
After Time of change drummer Chirico left to
form Arti & Mestieri, the others tried to revive
the band with the help of Osage Tribe's drummer Nunzio Favia, but the band split
after some months when Andersen was injured in an accident.
Joe Vescovi briefly joined Acqua Fragile at the end of 1974 and later both he and Favia joined Dik Dik. Vescovi reappeared in 2002 with a new Beatles-inspired band, Shout!, including ex-Acqua Fragile bass player Franz Dondi. A CD is released on Electromantic.
In 2010 the reunion of the 1972-73 three-piece line-up has been anounced, and Joe Vescovi, Arvid Wegg Andersen and Furio Chirico played in November at the Prog Exhibition in Rome.
The project of reforming the Trip went on with a concert in Japan in 2011, but the death of Andersen in 2012 (despite some other live appearances by the remaining two founder members) and especially the demise of Vescovi in 2014 declared the end of the glorious group.
The unreleased recording of the January 1972 concert at Rome's Piper in the Controcanzonissima festival, still with the four-piece line-up, has been issued in 2016 by Black Widow with the title Live '72.
|The Trip||RCA (PSL 10460)||1970||single cover with laminated front|
|RCA (NL 74111)||1989||as above|
|Caronte||RCA (PSL 10509)||1971||gatefold cover with inner opening|
|RCA (NL 74299)||1990||gatefold cover with side opening|
|Sony Music/BMG (88985 32316 1)||2016||new reissue with gatefold cover|
|Sony Music/BMG (88985 36519 1)||2017||new remastered reissue with gatefold cover|
|RCA/De Agostini (PSL 10509)||2018||gatefold cover and 8-page insert - no.15 in the De Agostini "Prog Rock Italiano" series|
|Atlantide||RCA (PSL 10540)||1972||center opening foldout cover
bonus 7" single L'intervista
|RCA (NL 74516)||1990||center opening foldout cover|
|Sony Music (88883 73260 1)||2013||2 LP - new reissue with a bonus album recorded live in Tokyo in 2011|
|Time of change||Trident (TRI 1002)||1973||gatefold cover|
|Akarma (AK 1013)||2000||reissue of the 1973 LP with gatefold cover|
|GDR (GDRLP 1702)||2017||as above - blue vinyl - includes bonus CD version|
|Live '72||Black Widow (BWR 188)||2016||1972 concert at the Piper in Rome - single cover with poster and 20-page booklet|
|The Trip||RCA (ND 74111)||1989||reissue of 1970 album -
also available as part of the limited 5-CD box set Rock progressivo italiano (RCA ND 74116-5)
|RCA/BMG (74321-26542-2)||90's||as above - now deleted|
|BMG (82876-63031-2)||2004||as above with mini-LP cover - now deleted|
|Sony/BMG (88697-34357-2)||2008||new reissue with standard jewel case|
|Sony/BMG (82876-63031-2)||2011||new reissue with mini-LP cover|
|Time of change||Vinyl Magic (VM 008)||1989||reissue of 1973 album - now deleted|
|Akarma (AK 1013)||2000||as above with mini gatefold cover|
|BTF/Trident (TRI 1002)||2001||as above|
|Caronte||RCA (ND 74299)||1990||reissue of 1971 album - now deleted|
|RCA/BMG (74321-26543-2)||90's||as above - now deleted|
|BMG (74321-98535-2)||2003||as above with mini-LP gatefold cover - now deleted|
|Sony/BMG (88697-34358-2)||2008||new reissue with standard jewel case|
|Sony/BMG (88697-90006-2)||2011||new reissue with mini-LP gatefold cover|
|Atlantide||RCA (ND 74516)||1990||reissue of 1972 album - now deleted|
|RCA/BMG (74321-26552-2)||90's||as above - now deleted|
|BMG (82876-54412-2)||2003||as above with centre foldout mini LP cover - now deleted|
|Sony/BMG (88697-34360-2)||2008||new reissue with standard jewel case|
|Sony Music (88883-73259-2)||2013||2 CD - new reissue with a bonus album recorded live in Tokyo in 2011|
VARIOUS ARTISTS COMPILATIONS
(with Bolero blues)
|ARC (ALPS 11020)||1969||single cover compilation, also including Patty Pravo, The Four Kents, Mal, Camel, The Senate|
Terzo canale - Avventura a Montecarlo
(with Travellin' soul and Fantasia)
|RCA (PSL 10485)||1970||film soundtrack - also includes New Trolls, Mal, Sheila, The Primitives, Four Kents, Jody Clark, Ricchi e Poveri|
|Piper pop party
(with Incubi and Riflessioni)
|RCA (PSL 10487)||1970||single cover compilation - also includes Jody Clark, Mal, The Primitives, Patty Pravo, The Four Kents|
|Prog Exhibition - 40 anni di musica immaginifica (with Atlantide, Evoluzione, Caronte, Two brothers, Ode a Jimi Hendrix, Ora X/Analisi, Distruzione/Il vuoto)||Immaginifica/Edel (ARS IMM 1004)||2011||7 CD + 4 DVD box set, also featuring Sinestesia, La Maschera di Cera, Tagliapietra-Pagliuca-Marton, Premiata Forneria Marconi, Periferia del Mondo, Raccomandata con Ricevuta di Ritorno, Osanna, Banco del Mutuo Soccorso|
SINGLES (with picture sleeve)
|Una pietra colorata
|RCA (PM 3527)||1970||both tracks from The Trip|
|RCA (PM 3561)||1970||from "Terzo canale" film soundtrack|
|Believe in yourself
|RCA (PM 3604)||1971||A-side unreleased
B-side from Caronte
|RCA (UP 10540)||1972||bonus with Atlantide|
|Trident (TRN 1002)||1973||both tracks from Time of change|
PROMOTIONAL AND JUKEBOX SINGLES (with blank sleeves)
|Una pietra colorata
||RCA (IB 502)||1970||4-tracks promo EP with
Corelli/La primavera and Nada/Bugia
The label has the text "Edizione speciale per il Festivalbar"
|Believe in yourself
||RCA (IB PM 3635)||1971||singolo jukebox, sul retro Raffaella Carrà/Tuca tuca|
Only the first Trip album is really difficult to find (but not among the most expensive ones) while the others are more common, and all have had vinyl and CD reissues.
The Trip has a single cover and like most contemporary RCA albums this has a glossy LP (not properly laminated but the overall effect is similar) and a pasted back on thick cardboard in the same style as the US album covers. The late 80's reissue is on a thinner cardboard and has different numbering.
Caronte comes in a gatefold cover with the record inserted from the centre of the gatefold, the reissue having a standard side-opening cover.
Third album Atlantide has a very original centre opening large cover with record inserted from the top, reproducing the mythical Atlantis island, and the design is faithfully reproduced in the reissue. Early copies of the album included an art sleeve bonus single with a band interview on both sides.
Fourth album, Time of change, their only on
Trident, has a standard gatefold cover. This has probably counterfeited as most
albums on this collectible label (see Trident page
for details).This album was also issued in 8-track cartridge version on Trident with
number TRE 1002.
The 2017 LP reissue on GDR label with gatefold cover contains the same album on blue vinyl and CD.
Caronte and Atlantide have also been reissued on vinyl in
Japan (RCA/Edison Rock Series, nos. ERS28011 and ERS28009, both have single
covers), the latter also in Korea (Si-Wan SRML 1008 - centre foldout cover); no counterfeits exist of these.
The single Believe in yourself was also issued in Portugal on RCA Victor (20055 - year 1972) with the same picture cover as the Italian version.
For what foreign CD issues are concerned, Atlantide was released in Japan in 1989 by RCA (in the Edison European Rock series, ERC-32018) and with mini-LP cover in 2004 by Strange Days (BVCM-37506, Italian Rock Paper Sleeve Collection II).Time of change was issued in Japan in 1994 by Nexus (KICP-7040) and in 2011 by Belle Antique (n.111819, Italian Rock Series), and in Korea with mini-LP gatefold cover by the Media Arte label (MA-0028) in 2011.
The Prog Exhibition 2010 (Live in Rome) CD was issued in Japan with mini-LP cover in 2014 on Immaginifica (Italian Rock Fantasy vol.2).
Caronte has been reissued on CD in March 2003 by BMG with mini-LP
gatefold cover and obi, as part of their "Dei di un perduto rock" series, and
later repressed in October of the same year when a second batch of those CD's
came out (including, among others, Atlantide).
The CD was announced by BMG as being also available with standard jewel case (cat.no. 74321-98534-2) but was probably never issued in this form.
The band also appeared on (at least) three RCA
albums compilations, all of these are very rare and collectible, and in two of
these The Trip were included with tracks unavailable on any of their
Particularly interesting is the Terzo canale - Avventura a Montecarlo film soundtrack, with the band also featured in the film, that also included the rare New Trolls' track Autostrada. Along with the album a promo single was released with excerpts from the soundtrack cuts, and individual singles by The Trip and New Trolls were issued.
The Trip - LP
Caronte - gatefold cover
Atlantide - LP
Atlantide - open gatefold
Time of change - gatefold cover
Live '72 - LP
Una pietra colorata 7" single
Fantasia 7" single
Believe in yourself 7" single
Intervista 7" single
Corale 7" single
Some questions to The Trip: Furio Chirico and Wegg Andersen (October 2010) and Joe Vescovi (November 2010), by Augusto Croce, (thanks to Daniele Nuti)
1 - How did you come to the decision to reunite the group?
Joe Vescovi (JV): There was a lot of pressure, especially from our Facebook friends, and many others.
Furio Chirico (FC): There were many requests from friends, some of which are now our collaborators, that came from Facebook. But the story starts from far away, for what me and my personal manager are concerned, there was a great desire to give the young generations the chance to hearthe music of The Trip, especially abroad, in Japan, USA, etc. This is now possible thanks to to our Italian management, their collaborators and the international promoters Then we are willing to meet again, not only for the band reunion but also to produce new ideas and projects.
Wegg Andersen (WA): Furio phoned me with enthusiasm in his voice!
2 - Were there any previous attempts to reform The Trip in the past?
JV: In March 1998, but it didn't go on due to a bad accident (not on the road, this time) that hit Wegg in Switzerland.
FC: Nothing that involved me, because in the latest years my musical commitments were very intense.
WA: Yes, but nothing serious. It was just part of a conversation.
3 - What is your best recollection of your past years with The Trip? And do you have any regrets concerned to those years?
JV: With the three-piece line-up, surely the Rome Villa Pamphili Festival in May 1972. We closed triumphantly the second and last night, though we had only made a few gigs together before. There were maybe 80000 people, I had never seen anything like that before!
FC: No doubt: the Villa Pamphili concert in Rome in 1972, there were thousands of people, and we played along with the best bands in the international prog field.
WA: Of course no regrets, I was happy. I preferred living in Liguria rather than in L.A.. Recollection you ask. our army up to 5000 guys ready for anything, they would turn up with a pack and a sleeping bag, ask for nothing, just listen to the music, drink some wine and say hello. They were the best.
4 - Wegg, while Joe Vescovi and Furio Chirico are well-known in Italy for their musical activity after The Trip broke up, little is known about yours. Did you kept playing after 1974?
WA: I had a serious road accident in 1974 in Liguria. An English DJ who worked aboard a ship for a Dutch pirate radio was driving, not used to little country roads, spun off the road, hit a dry stone wall, we were ejected from his two-seater topless car. I hit and broke two vertebra, unfortunately Mike landed on his head….dead.
I could not play, my back was too weak to carry a Fender bass. I had spent, don’t forget, three months in a hospital in Albenga, lying on a wooden plank. When I came out of the clinic I changed job and became Disk Jockey at the Boccaccio in Alassio for the season. I didn’t want that as a career, even though we had some great fun. I went back to London still working with music, this time in an editor’s suite, dealing with classical music.
Playing? In the 80’s here in Switzerland I put together a rock'n'roll trio, my greatest love, with a Swiss drummer, a Greek guitarist and this Norwegian from London on bass and vocals!
5 - Are you planning something new, other concerts or a new CD?
JV: We have many projects: setting up the live show, a studio album, the DVD taken from Prog Exhibition (also including the other bands), maybe a live album with vintage recordings and even a book. Of course we have planned a tour for next year.
FC: There is much excitement, and it's likely that this will happen: a management, new collaborators both in Italy and abroad (fan club/concerts etc...) and the project of a new CD, but above all a band which, along with the three historical members, is helped by two great musicians, The Trip will surprise for their strength and freshness, I'm personally very confident.
WA: Yes of course:
A) More Italian concerts;
B) Foreign tours, Mexico, Japan;
C) DVD from the reunion in Rome, Nov.2010;
D) A new album;
E) A book to be published in English, French, Italian about The Trip, beginning from the time with Blackmore, Broad and Gray.
6 - What do you think about the renewed interest, both in Italy and abroad, in the Italian prog of the 70's?
JV: Abroad in the latest years Prog resisted, though it didn't attract the same interest it had in the Seventies, but in Italy it had been almost forgotten. Now there seems to be a new interest, at least in Italy: the Prog Exhibition held in Rome on 5 and 6 November is a real piece of evidence.
FC: Very good, but it's important now that all the different opportunities, for gigs, records and press, are now harmonised. This is necessary, if we want this interest to last and this musical form to be officially recognised.
WA: A nice surprise but not unusual. Everybody forgets the tango for a bit, then the older generation suddenly remembers those good times, the younger generation get caught up in it all, so……The same with Prog Rock
7 - How do you judge the festivals such as next November's Prog Exhibition in Rome? Just nostalgia or what?
JV: Not at all, in Rome there were people coming from many countries as well as from Italy, and I saw many young guys. We must reflect upon this.
FC: Classical music and jazz concerts are nostalgia? So why should be considered this way the prog, rock blues, fusion, metal, pop music? Music is just music, with no history or borders, and no styles. Everything else is commercial logic and has nothing to do with culture, both popular or educated. Only the quality of contents counts!!! Not only in music.
WA: I hope to see a lot of old friends, a lot of faces from those days. Nostalgia? No, not really. An excuse to get together and…”have some fun tonight”.
8 - Are there any new progressive groups, from any part of the world, that you're interested in?
JV: No, I got left behind, to Marillion or Dream Theater, which are not new, but surely belong to a different generation than ours. Anyway, even if they are techincally very talented, on a cretive point of view they have nothing in common with the old ones.
FC: It's hard for me to follow… my feet, so I don't have the time to keep up with other artists, but during my concerts I met many good bands, sometimes very young. And often in my academy, I can hear interesting new bands and projects.
WA: Yes, my medical doctor has a great band, he was with “The Hot Docs” before, now the band is called Silesie, their CD is entitled “The famous crier of the cinema”.
Click on the pictures to enlarge
|The Trip - 1970, at RCA in Rome, with
Gianni Boncompagni and singer Raffaella Carrà
|The Trip - 1970, on the set of the Terzo Canale film, with singer Mal|
|The Trip - promotional picture, around 1971||The Trip - in the studio, around 1971|
|The Trip - April 1972||The Trip - April 1972|
|The Trip - 2010
Arvid Wegg Andersen, Joe Vescovi, Furio Chirico
Teatro Tendastrisce, Roma, 5-Nov-2010
|Le Radici del Rock - Viterbo 21-Jul-2012|
The official Trip website is www.thetripofficial.com
Another non official website is at http://thetrip.altervista.org
Drummer Furio Chirico has his own
website at www.furiochirico.com
Info on the 2002 CD by Joe Vescovi's new band Shout! can be found on Electromantic Music's website at www.electromantic.com
The last Trip drummer Cucciolo has his own website at http://www.ricordati.com/cucciolo.htm
Thanks to John Elvis Gualtieri, Guilherme Tofani and Antonio Calcagno for some of the information on this page and to Guido Piron, Daniele Nuti and The Trip for the pictures.