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Gucci Links With Recording Academy

Gucci's Frida Giannini speaks to WWD exclusively about the effort to restore milestone musical recordings.

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MILAN — Gucci has signed a three-year partnership with the Recording Academy, known for the Grammy Awards, to restore and preserve milestone musical recordings. Proceeds from a special edition collection of Gucci Grammy watches and jewelry will help support the project. “I really wanted this to happen, as its stems from my personal passion for music and the same curiosity and needs I share for films, too,” Gucci’s creative director, Frida Giannini, told WWD exclusively.

Giannini compared the agreement with the Recording Academy to Gucci’s five-year relationship with Martin Scorsese’s nonprofit organization, The Film Foundation, which has fueled the restoration of six classic films to date, including Luchino Visconti’s “The Leopard,” with a total donation of $1.5 million so far.

Giannini said it was too early to provide details on the accessories she will design, but noted there will be elements linked to the gramophone, the academy’s logo.

“We believe a good part of our success comes from the company we keep,” said Evan Greene, chief marketing officer of the academy, which was established in 1957. He defined the partnership as “a natural fit,” as Gucci and the academy share “similar sensibilities.” Greene said prices and distribution of the accessories are still being defined and worldwide marketing, communications and retail campaigns will be put in motion.

Giannini said the academy is compiling a list of original tracks in need of restoration, from which she will then select. The tracks that will finally make the cut “will have to be in line with the Gucci brand.”

Greene said, “There is a whole archive of music over the last century that has not been digitized or not discovered yet.” The academy opened a museum dedicated to music two years ago in Los Angeles.

Giannini, who owns a collection of 8,000 vinyl discs, credits music as a source of inspiration and personally chooses soundtracks for Gucci’s runway shows and advertising campaigns, such as an original remix of Donna Summer’s “I Feel Love” for the Flora by Gucci fragrance film two years ago.

“I love all music,” said Giannini, admitting to a partiality to “vintage,” but also to a taste for new bands. Listing her favorites, the designer mentioned, among other songs and artists, Madonna’s “Into the Groove,” “Personal Jesus” by Depeche Mode, Duran Duran’s “Save a Prayer,” David Bowie and Mary J. Blige.

In turn, countless performers have been associated with Gucci and worn the brand over the years, from Eric Clapton and Elton John to Madonna, Rihanna, Fergie and Alicia Keys. Gucci recently has teamed up with Rihanna, Blige and musician, producer and DJ Mark Ronson on various projects.