The Aristocats Italian Cat

_Quinn_ posted on Jul 16, 2010 at 04:46PM
I started The Aristocats fanpop site when I realized these cute cats did not already have a fanpop site dedicated to them. I never dreamed that a member of the original Scat Cat band (human/costumed form film promoters), Italian Cat, would contact me and share his story.
I am starting this forum where you can ask Italian Cat questions or he can just share stories with us. I am very greatful to Gerry for taking the time to contact me and to offer to share with the Aristocat fans.
last edited on Jul 16, 2010 at 04:53PM

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1年以上前 _Quinn_ said…
(The original message left for us fans by Gerry):

"I've just found your site for the Aristocats.
I thought that some of you may be interested to know that I actually worked for Disney when the Aristocats was initially released in 1970.
I played the part of 'Italian Cat' in the (Human/Costumed form) of the Scat Cat Band and actively promoted the film during the latter part of 1970 and early 1971. There were just three members of the 'group' which toured a lot of the UK, making personal/TV/Radio appearances. A guy named Robin who played the hippy cat, and Colin made up the third member. I played the accordion, Robin.....double bass, and Colin played guitar. We had a 'roadie' called John, and Peter Green was our Manager. I am just in the process of obtaining a copy of the Blue Peter episode we made back in November 1970, where 'Patch' the Blue Peter dog actually took a disliking to me and bit my leg!
I have many fond memories of working as Italian Cat and plenty of stories that I could tell when I met many people associated in show business (such as the time I 'doubled' for (now Sir) Cliff Richard in Sheffield and meeting Larry Grayson at the same show!!)
I still have some 'memorabilia and press cuttings from those days and if my limited computer 'skills' permit, I could always post them on here if anyone is interested."
1年以上前 italiancat said…
Thanks for starting this section up Quinn. :)
1年以上前 italiancat said…
It all started for me back in 1970 (I was 20 years old) when a friend of mine saw an advert in the New Musical Express for 'An Accordion Playing Cat Required'. The ad' went on to state that an accordionist was required to help promote a film, making personal public appearances, TV and Radio shows.
To be honest, I didn't think I had the confidence to do such a job. I had been playing the accordion for about 14 years or so, so I knew my way around the instrument very well and I had played in front of quite a few people, but.....ME? on TV????
My friend and others encouraged me to apply for the job, but I didn't do anything for a week or so. Still, they 'insisted' I apply for the job and after mentioning the advert at work, my boss told me that I should 'go for it', I decided to give Walt Disney Promotions a ring and I was invited for an audition.

The audition went reasonably well.......I had been professionally trained to play the accordion at a very early age, but one of my pet hates about music was learning the theory (and still is 40 years on!). I was taught to read music, but I was gifted with a 'musical ear' and seemed to be able to hear a tune once or twice, then able to play it.
Disneys gave me sheet music to play by!
I stumbled my way through 'Everybody Wants To Be a Cat' and saw the two Disney executives look at one another. Giving it another go, I still wasn't producing what they wanted to hear.
I had learnt enough about the job to make me want it and want it bad........but there was no way I was going to go much further if I couldn't master one of the main tunes of the film.
"Have you got the tune on record?" I asked (hopefully!)
One of the men left the room, came back with a record player and record (no CD's/MP3 players in those days!!) and played the theme tune.
Accordion at the ready and one eye on the sheet music, I played exactly what they wanted to hear.

"How much money do you want?" my new boss asked.................

(to be continued)
1年以上前 _Quinn_ said…
After The Aristocats did you get any other jobs playing the accordian for tv or movies?
1年以上前 italiancat said…
We were meant to be doing a movie as 'ourselves' i.e. three young musicians (not in costume lol) but one thing we learnt working in 'show biz'.....Don't believe anything until you've done it and have been paid for it!
Myself and the other two members of the band all went our separate ways when the contract ran out and lost touch with one another. My regular pub which I 'frequented' before working for Disney asked me to play for a couple of evenings each week which I done for a while, but it didn't have the same 'buzz' or appeal as the Disney job gave me. Deciding not to apply to work at Holiday Camps which would have been work for the summer, I returned to my old job but kept my hand in with music. I took up playing the guitar for several years, then I bought myself a Keyboard. Marriage/raising my two sons and making a career for myself in road transport took me away from the music scene for many years, although I still kept playing (and buying new) keyboards!
Unfortunately, later in life when I moved to Cornwall I injured my back due to an industrial accident and had to sell my accordion although I can manage to play the keyboard nowadays. (I used to play at local schools/school concerts but as I've gotten older, my back condition has worsened so 'public appearances' has had to stop :( ) If you're into musical instruments Quinn I now have a Yamaha Pro 9000 keyboard!

I'll post some more 'memoirs' a bit later on.
All the Best