Eleven-year-old twin brothers Vittorio and Vincenzo have an early start on their music career with their two-man rock outfit V² (pronounced “V squared”). The pair’s debut album We Are V² was nominated in—and swept—seven categories at the 24th Annual L.A. Music Awards. The junior rockers blew away the audience with a two-song set from their debut, “We Are V²” and “Long Live Rock N Roll,” at the awards show held at The Avalon in Hollywood on Nov. 12.
Such a decisive victory would be a heady experience for any band, be it young or old. But how do the brothers feel about it? “It was an honor just to be nominated and asked to play in front of all the other nominees and [the] music industry,” guitarist Vittorio observes. “It was the best day of our lives,” brother and drummer Vincenzo adds. “I hadn’t been that excited since I was seven and the Giants won their first World Series!”
Awards are wonderful. But so is interest from an industry insider. For V², such a man was production veteran Ron Nevison (the Who, Led Zeppelin, Ozzy). He’d heard about the young rockers and came to check out one of their rehearsals. “He visited us at Rock Star University,” Vittorio recalls. “He said we were great and that he wanted to produce our first studio album.” Vincenzo adds, “A few weeks later, he was coming to our rehearsals every day and working with us, and then we went into the studio to cut our first album.”
The pair credits Rock Star University (RSU), a rock/music education institution, as integral to their success. “Rock Star University helped us become great musicians and performers,” Vincenzo asserts. “We learned everything there. We wouldn’t have had the opportunities to learn and perform without it.”
Education is one thing. But stage time is another. And it isn’t something so easily won as a budding rock band. But the brothers recognize the role RSU played in helping them feel comfortable on stage, especially when it came time to perform at the L.A. Music Awards. “I wasn’t nervous at the awards show,” Vittorio says. “I couldn’t wait to get up there and play.”
Brother Vincenzo was less confident, but soon found his zone when the music kicked in. “I was a little nervous,” the drummer admits, “but once Vittorio started talking to the audience and tossed to me to announce the first song, my nerves were gone as soon as I hit the snare drum.”
The first foray into the studio is an auspicious moment for any band. But what’s the experience been like for such a young act? “We’d only done live performances up to that point, so working in the studio was both easier and harder,” Vittorio explains. “It’s easier because we can do numerous takes so there’s no pressure to kill it on the first one. It’s harder because one song can take all day. But we now understand how it all works, so our next album will be easier and even better.”
Though young people are notorious for their short attention span, this pair has made it work, mainly because they enjoy what they’re doing. “It’s fun,” Vincenzo observes. “But it’s also a lot of work.”
Lessons learned early are likely the ones that serve the longest. What have been the important lessons for the brothers? “We’re only as good as our last rehearsal,” Vincenzo remarks. “And only practice makes perfect,” Vittorio adds. “Like the AC/DC song says, ‘It’s a long way to the top if you wanna rock & roll.’”
The band is currently recording its follow-up record, Pass the Rock N Roll Torch. Like their debut, We Are V², it is also being produced by Nevison.
The boys are fans of AC/DC and hope to open for them on their 2015 tour.