Posted by on Sep 7, 2007 in General | 0 comments

Disclaimer: This has nothing to do with technology.

I’ve had a lot of dreams. When I was in junior high, I wanted to be a brain surgeon. As it turns out, my fingers were too big (and it ended up being way more school than I was willing to do). Then, my last year of high-school, I was into SCUBA diving, and I wanted to get into marine biology. Which is why I ended up at UC Santa Barbara…for a year.

Long story short, I ended up getting a degree in music. Specifically, I got a degree in classical vocal performance.

Here is a secret. Well, it isn’t really a secret. The one singer that everyone who is a vocal music major listens to is Luciano Pavarotti. Sure it makes sense for tenors to listen to him. His phrasing, his…heart. The way he effortlessly hit the high notes. Simply amazing. And yet, he transcended the singular voice definition. Sure the sopranos listened to Callas, but they check out Pavarotti as well. Baritones may have Fischer-Dieskau, but they heard the “King of the High C’s” . In short, there may be no more famous singer short of Caruso (who has his part in Bay Area history).

Sure he pimped out his voice in the latter part of his career. Sure his choice of singing partners off the operatic stage is…questionable at best.

But, when he brought it, he God Damn well brought it. He made more people realize that opera could be relevant, heart-felt, even beautiful, than any other person in modern history. His is a shadow that will not be easily filled.

Do yourself a favor. Imagine you are a painter unjustly thrown in prison. As you wait for dawn (and your death) to arrive, you write a farewell note to your lover. And then you sing one of the most beautiful pieces ever written for the human voice.

Go find a copy of Pavarotti singing E lucevan le stelle (from Tosca). Find a quiet place, turn down the lights and listen. You will not be sorry.