Photo: Erick Anderson
Nick D’Virgilio is one of those guys with a fantastic list of credits but who isn’t quite a household name. If progressive rock ruled the airwaves then perhaps he’d have the name recognition that so many lesser talents possess, but alas, despite our respect for Spock’s Beard, mainstream radio in the U.S. just hasn’t caught on.
Outside of that band in which he is both drummer and lead vocalist — a role he assumed after former front man, Neal Morse, embarked on a successful solo career, Nick has been the touring drummer for Tears for Fears for almost a decade, and he appears on their last concert DVD as well as a few tracks on their Gold hits collection. He has performed with prog acts like Frost, The Mike Keneally Band, and Fates Warning, and has recorded with artists including Jordan Rudess, Big Big Train, and Steve Thorn.
Of significant note, he was one of the two drummers who replaced legend Phil Collins on the final Genesis CD, Calling All Stations, and he was instrumental (literally and figuratively) in the recording and release of Kevin Gilbert’s critically acclaimed posthumous release, The Shaming of the True. His latest studio output and ongoing live gig is with Cirque Du Soleil. He’s touring as the drummer and co-band leader in support of the latest theatrical production, Totem.
Over the past two years, Nick managed to write/perform and co-produce with Mark Hornsby the fantastic Rewiring Genesis: The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway, make a new CD with Spock’s Beard (X), get a touring and recording gig with Cirque Du Soleil, and record a new solo EP, Pieces. Like many other great talents, drums are merely the place you see Nick most frequently (unless you catch a Spock’s Beard live show). He plays keyboards, guitar, and bass, and quite frankly, he’s damn good wherever you stick him in the band.
We managed to catch up with Nick in Canada to talk about the whirlwind musical journey he’s been on lately, but we suspect that he was already onto the next project by the time we finished our conversation. Whoosh!
“I had a quick thought that I would be a pro golfer…”