In 1990, the joint efforts of the World Cup and the Three Tenors provided opera singing with its biggest ever foray into the pop charts. Unassuming tenor Paul Potts, originally from Bristol, took opera back to the very top of the charts with the album One Chance 17 years later, and he too had a helping hand from the enormously popular television talent show Britain's Got Talent. There is no denying that Paul Potts has indeed got talent, but is he a better singer than any of the Three Tenors? Certainly not. Still, a TV talent show captures the public almost as much as the World Cup, and Potts rides this wave extremely well. He began his trip into TV stardom singing that staple of operatic performance Nessun Dorma, and this aria opens the album too. The problem is that by 2007 the song was so famous that Potts openly invites comparisons with a multitude of operatic tenors who have sung it before. Not that this is any bad thing; it's a difficult song to sing well and Potts does sing nicely in tune, every note well rehearsed, but there is a lack of real feeling and emotion that betrays his rapid rise. In fact, One Chance is not really an opera album at all, and the millions of people who bought it thinking they were buying into a slice of high culture got an album filled with tracks like "Time to Say Goodbye" (Con Te Partirò), a hit single from Sarah Brightman and Andrea Bocelli; "Everybody Hurts" (Ognuno Soffre), originally by R.E.M.; and versions of "My Way," "Cavatina" (the theme from The Deer Hunter), and Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Music of the Night" from Phantom of the Opera. The track "Caruso" had been recorded by almost everyone in this genre from Russell Watson to Il Divo, and in a similar way that Vittorio Grigolo took a modern pop song, Keane's "Bedshaped," and made it sound like an operatic aria, so Potts translates Westlife's "You Raise Me Up" into Italian and produces a sound far removed from the Westlife hit. One Chance was the sort of album that had the stamp of Simon Cowell all over it, very similar to his Il Divo projects. Cowell had an ear for a good tune, and knew what would sell and how to package the moment to maximum effect. This is the type of album that comes along every so often and persuades people that they like opera, when previously they might have thought they did not. If it went on to introduce anybody to other singers in the genre aside from Paul Potts, no doubt he would be one of the first to cheer, but unfortunately, as with the Three Tenors, once out of the spotlight, so was the music. [A ten-track U.K. version of One Chance was also released.]
Not often do i come across media that stirs emotion so much as to induce tears... i was lucky to come across it twice in one day, firstly with this astounding album with and amazing story then i discovered the written equivalent in "The God of Small Things". What a day to be cherished and be thankful to be alive.
What an amazing album
Some may nag on about his singing not being perfect, but I could not find anything wrong with this awesome album, and what an amazing job he has done in covering all these songs. What a feat, I cant wait until he brings out original music. I have recommended this album to everyone I have come across, because everyone deserves to hear it.
Not a classical album
This album should really be in the pop music sections because most of the music on this album is not classical. There are only 2 arias (nope, Nella Fantasia does not count, and neither does Time to say Goodbye). Good on Potts for wanting to sing opera but he shouldn't have gone to Simon Cowell or reality TV to realise his dream.
Born: 13 October 1970 in Bristol, England
Years Active: '00s, '10s
Top Albums and Songs by Paul Potts
||Nessun dorma||One Chance||2:53||$2.39||View in iTunes|
||Mi manera (Spanish Version of 'My Way')||One Chance||4:26||$1.79||View in iTunes|
||Amapola||One Chance||3:44||$1.79||View in iTunes|
||Cavatina||One Chance||3:47||$2.39||View in iTunes|
||Ognuno soffre (Italian Verson of 'Everybody Hurts')||One Chance||4:50||$2.39||View in iTunes|
||Music of the Night||One Chance||5:18||$1.79||View in iTunes|
||Caruso||One Chance||3:50||$2.39||View in iTunes|
||Con te partiro (Italian Version of 'Time To Say Goodbye')||One Chance||4:03||$2.39||View in iTunes|
||Nella fantasía||One Chance||4:25||$2.39||View in iTunes|
||Por ti seré (Italian Version of 'You Raise Me Up')||One Chance||4:01||$2.39||View in iTunes|