Rebecca Helm-Ropelato
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Thursday, March 8, 2007
Eros the Man, and Friends Here and Gone
The song Se bastasse un canzone (If A Song Were Enough) was written and recorded by Eros Ramazzotti, known simply as Eros. Here he performs it with Pavarotti at the tenor's famous 1998 concert Pavarotti and Friends, (later released as a CD). The event in Milan, drawing an audience of 80,000, was a benefit for the children of Liberia.
The song is a serenade to those who dream of changing the world. Roughly translated, the first stanza says -- If a beautiful song would be enough to cause love to rain down, you could sing it a million times, if it were enough, then you wouldn't need much to learn how to love more. The final stanzas dedicate the song to all those who are wandering confused, without homes or countries, those who still have nothing, who are always waiting, always dreaming of a better world.
Eros was born in 1963 in Rome, according to Wikipedia. His father was a housepainter. He began performing as a teenager. After gaining recognition in popular Italian musical festivals, he released a series of albums that launched him internationally. Eros records all his albums in Spanish as well as in Italian. He is especially popular in Spanish-speaking countries and has sold over 36 million records worldwide. His latest release in 2005, Calma Apparente, was followed in 2006 by an enormously successful world tour.
That Eros is less of a sensation in the U.S., than elsewhere may be because of his conspicuously missing English (in performance) in that very indulged location. Nonetheless, he is certainly not unknown there. From his 1998 eponymous release, Eros, here is the hit duet, Can't Stop Thinkin of You recorded with Tina Turner.
Eros has acknowledged a strong influence on his musical style from the legendary Italian musician, Lucio Battisti, according to the Italian Wikipedia. Battisti, enormously successful as a songwriter and performer in his own relatively short lifetime (1943-1997), continues to influence singers here to the present day. I learned how much so myself recently when I heard Battisti's celebrated album Emozioni, for the first time. I recognized much of the music from having heard it performed so often by musicians young and old here in Italy.
Here is a clip of a television performance by Battisti in the prime of his success. You can judge for yourself how great his influence on Eros. Or you can just listen and enjoy him for the rare wonder he was. I really wish he'd stayed around a little longer.
by Rebecca Helm-Ropelato