Plácido Domingo

Forever Domingo

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This album is a repackaging of Deutsche Grammophon's 1994 release Granada: The Greatest Hits of Plácido Domingo. As such, it does a better job of representing what you get than did the earlier version, which showed Domingo on the cover wearing a big black Spanish hat. That ignored half of the album's contents, which consists of famous Italian opera arias. That's a reasonable balance for a collection of this kind, which ought to give the buyer a taste of the range of Domingo's abilities. Yes, he was part of opera's most energetic crossover enterprise in the modern era, but he has never let it interfere with his traditional role. The music was recorded between 1976 and 1992, all prime vocal years for the tenor, and the operatic selections give a good idea of what he's about. There's nothing really wrong with the popular songs, either, although they don't play to his greatest strength: the zarzuela tradition in which he was raised. Instead you get a variety of Caribbean songs and a few English-language items in which the voice is fine -- he can make it do pretty much whatever he wants -- but where there's competence and ease rather than deep enthusiasm. Nevertheless, this is a reasonable choice for anyone wanting a single-album Domingo sampler.

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