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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Remembering Pavarotti - My Only Thought Is Of You Luciano

In Recondita Armonia the painter Mario Cavaradossi is painting a picture of Mary Magdalene when he compares it with his own partner Tosca. It is one of those beautiful songs that reminds you of spring or when a heart is full. When it comes on my car stereo I find myself wanting to turn it up and lower my windows to let people passing me in the opposite direction have a small and fleeting chance to hear it's beauty and perhaps encourage them them to go get a copy themselves. Mostly I reckon they just think I am a dick head. But it doesn't matter, a few moments later we are one hundred yards away from each other.

Today, however, the song made me sad rather than happy. Sometimes it takes some time to recognise that a person is departed from this world. Pavarotti, in those final years, seem to have really lost the plot. He seemed to be plucking his eyebrows, powdering his face and getting his face lifted. It's not really how I wished to remember him. I wish to remember Pavarotti as that marvel of the The Three Tenors which, along with the Book/Cd 'Allegro Al Dente' introduced me to opera in the early 1990's when the tenors were coveted by little old ladies in rocking chairs who craved a bit of Pavarotti/Carreras/Domingo every other day.

I wish to remember Pavarotti the way I loved him as a young man, the portly black bearded man in white tie bellowing out timeless magic.

And in case you never knew what the hell he was saying, here is a translation:

Pass me the colors...

Concealed harmony of contrasting beauties!
Floria, my ardent lover, is dark haired.
And you, unknown beauty, crowned with blond hair,
You have blue eyes,
Tosca has black eyes!

Art, in its mysterious way,
blends the contrasting beauties together...
But while I'm painting her,
My only thought,
My only thought is of you,
Tosca, it is of you!

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