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Story behind Caruso – Luciano Pavarotti

There are countless versions of “Caruso” song floating around, but few of them compare to the sheer virtuosity of this one from Luciano Pavarotti, which sold over 9 million copies. In the video above, Pavarotti perform this song Live in Paris (with english lyrics/subtitles). 

This song “Caruso” was written in 1986 by Italian musician Lucio Dalla (4 March 1943 – 1 March 2012), who also sung it. Dalla dedicated it to Enrico Caruso, one of the greatest and most sought-after Italian Opera singers during the late 19th and early 20th century.

Caruso had a very difficult and rather unhappy life. He was born to a poor family in Naples and had many challenges and problems with Italian opera houses, Also his wife left him for another man, so he migrated to America and gained fame and success in it, which the song mentions (the nights in America). A few years before his death, he met a young woman and fell deeply in love with her.


What inspired Dalla to write this song?

Dalla had the occasion to stay at the same hotel “Excelsior Vittoria in Sorrento” where Caruso, the tenor, passed his last nights. Caruso was ill with throat cancer, but that didn’t prevent him from giving singing lessons to a young women with whom he fell deeply in love.

Controversially, the song simply tells about the pain and longings of a man who is about to die while he is looking into the eyes of a girl who was very dear to him.

This song is most probably a way of romanticizing Enrico Caruso’s last days. It narrates the drama of Caruso’s last concert:

“It was a hot night and he would not give up singing for her looking at him with admiration, so he brought the piano to the terrace overlooking the port and began to sing a passionate declaration of love and suffering. His voice was strong and the fishermen, hearing, returned to port and remained anchored on the terrace. The lights of the boats were so many that looked like stars … Caruso did not lose the strength and continued singing sinking in the most beautiful green eyes of the girl leaning against the piano. That night his condition worsened. Two days later, on August 2, 1921, Caruso died in Naples. This song narrates the drama of that night, with lights and shadows of the past… with death and life… a sick man who looks in the eyes of the girl a future that no longer exists… a testament of love, a declaration of love… This was his last concert, and had the most exceptional public … the sea, the stars in the sky, fishermen, the lights of the boats, and his beloved girl… “


If you like this song, you would like to listen to the lovely Lara Fabian singing “Caruso” song 


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