Even though my heart belongs to rock and roll I do like all kinds of other music genres. One of the greatest opera tenors was Enrico Caruso. I remember enjoying his great voice because my dad was a big fan of his. He had several albums and enjoyed listening to this great talent. Still being little I, of course, wasn’t listening to rock and roll yet, so my little ears picked up whatever my parents were listening to.
In the U.S., early in the last century one of the top-selling records of all time was “Vesti la giubba” from the opera Pagliacci on a 78 r.p.m record. Do you remember these kinds of records? It became the first million-seller in American history.
Enrico Caruso became the most famous operatic tenor in history and the biggest recording artist of the early 20th century. He came into this world in Naples, Italy on February 25, 1873. Caruso came of age during the golden age for Italian opera when some of the greatest composers were writing their compositions.
Having gained popularity Caruso began performing in opera houses from St. Petersburg to Buenos Aires and visited the U.S. for the first time in 1903. He made a great impression when he sang at New York’s Metropolitan Opera. His first recordings were made with the Victor Talking-Machine Company (later RCA Victor).
It was tragic when Caruso was struck by a lingering illness that led to the deterioration of his health and he died on August 2, 1921, in his native Naples not far from where he was born. He was only 48 years old.
MGM studios made a fantastic movie about Caruso “The Great Caruso” it is a movie worth watching. The part of Caruso was played by another great singer Mario Lanza.