The Guardian regales us with this in that reblogged, Rarely have a few notes on a reverb-drenched guitar defined an entire film genre, but half a century on, the twangy riffs of Ennio Morricone’s soundtracks are for many the perfect expression of Sergio Leone’s spaghetti westerns.
Which is why an Italian woman is suing for the €800,000 she says is due to her father, who she claims played those notes for Morricone but never received full credit.
Maria Rucher says her father, Pino Rucher, who died 17 years ago, played solos on the soundtracks of all three of Leone’s seminal westerns starring Clint Eastwood – A Fistful of Dollars, For a Few Dollars More and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly – which were made by the Italian director between 1964 and 1966. She first approached three other Italian guitarists to challenge their claims to have worked on the soundtracks, but was rebuffed by all three.
Moreover, the trio of musicians – Enrico Ciacci, Alessandro Alessandroni and Bruno Battisti D’Amario – then began to argue among themselves over who played what, wrote the Italian newspaper La Repubblica.
Rucher then took her claim to Morricone, but La Repubblica reported that the composer denied her father worked on the films. To solve the dispute among the other three guitarists, Morricone said he remembered Alessandroni being used on A Fistful of Dollars and Battisti D’Amario playing on the other two films.
Now Rucher has decided to take Morricone, 84, and the three guitarists to court, demanding €200,000 from each.
Pino Rucher became a successful guitarist in Italy in the 1960s after he performed with US jazz musicians playing for allied soldiers stationed in his hometown in Puglia in southern Italy after the second world war.
For Morricone, the spaghetti westerns – so-called because they were often filmed in Europe – were a turning point his career. Lacking the large orchestra used in westerns until then, he used whips, gunshots, whistles and electric guitars to accompany Eastwood’s Man with No Name.
So pleased was Leone with the music he would lengthen scenes to fit the score, and the soundtrack for The Good, the Bad and the Ugly sold more than three million copies.
The case is due in court in Rome on 23 May and Morricone, who is reportedly angry that the case has been brought, is expected to give evidence.