Caruso by Lucio Dalla
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. The lyrics contain various subtle references to people and places in Caruso’s life.
Lucio Dalla told the origin and the meaning of the song in an interview to one of the main Italian newspapers, the Corriere della Sera. He stopped by the coastal town of Sorrento and stayed in the Excelsior Vittoria Hotel, coincidentally in the very same room where many years earlier the tenor Enrico Caruso spent some time shortly before dying. Dalla was inspired to write the song after the owners told him about the last days of Caruso and in particular the latter’s passion for one of his young female students.
Caruso was an acclaimed Italian operatic singer who was one of the greatest and most sought-after singers during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Unfortunately he lived a very difficult and rather unhappy life, having had many challenges and problems with Italian opera houses, but gained more fame and success in the United States.
Caruso was born to a poor family in Naples. He was often involved with women, and had several love affairs with prominent married women in the performing arts, which often ended badly. His longest and most passionate love affair was with the married Ada Giachetti, with whom he had two sons. It ended when she left him for their chauffeur. A few years before he died, he met and wed a woman 20 years his junior, Dorothy Park Benjamin, whom Lucio Dalla describes in this song “Caruso”. With her he had a daughter named Gloria.
My inspiration is Pavarotti singing Caruso, so much to learn, not only from listening to him but also watching him. The world’s best singers project from the whole body its fascinating to watch.