'O sole mio

Music by Eduardo Di Capua; lyrics by Giovani Capurro (1898)

FZ album(s) in which song has appeared

Tour(s) on which song is known to have been performed (main source: FZShows, v. 7.1)

Comments

Marc De Bruyn (emdebe@village.uunet.be), September 6, 2003

What counts as an original? Elvis Presley liked a 1949 Tony Martin number called "There's No Tomorrow" and recorded private versions of the song whilst on army service in Germany. But "There's No Tomorrow" was itself based on a much older Italian number called "O Sole Mio" (an Italian operatic theme), which was written in 1898 by Eduardo Di Capua (1864-1917, music) when he was travelling in the Ukraine in 1901, and Giovanni Capurro (1859-1920, lyrics). In 1973, documents were presented to the Italian court, showing that a certain Mazzucchi was co-author of the number.

"Che bella cosa, 'na Iurnata 'e sole / N'aria serena doppo 'na tempesta / Pe' ll'aria fresca pare già 'na festa... / Che bella cosa 'na iurnata 'e sole / Ma n'atu sole cchiù bello, ohi nè / 'o sole mio, sta nfronte a te / 'o sole, o sole mio / sta nfronte a te, sta nfronte a te! / Lùcene 'e llastre d'à fenesta toia, / 'na lavannara canta e se, ne vanta / e pe' tramente terce, spanne e canta / lùceno 'e llastre d'à fenesta toia / Ma n'atu sole cchiù bello, ohi nè / 'o sole mio, sta nfronte a te / 'o sole, 'o sole mio / sta nfronte a te, stanfronte a te! / Quanno fa notte e 'o sole se ne scenne, / mme vene quase 'na malincunia / sotto 'a fenesta toia restarria / quanno fa notte e 'o sole se ne scenne / Ma n'atu sole, cchiù bello, ohi nè / 'o sole mio sta nfronte a te / 'o sole, 'o sole mio / sta nfronte a te, sta nfronte a te!"

"O Sole Mio" was originally recorded by Giuseppe Anselmi in 1907, but ever since it has been (and probably still is) sung by everyone under the sun: Enrico Caruso, Benjamino Gigli, Mario Lanza, Luciano Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, countless Neapolitan Troubadours, and Italians Everywhere...

New English lyrics were provided for Presley by Aaron Schroeder and Wally Gold (1928-1998) in 1960; for "It's Now or Never", Gold and Schroeder made an up-tempo, cha-cha flavored arrangement, sung by actor David Hess (who was using the name David Hill), as a demo: Presley loved it: it became his favorite of all his records (and eventually also of the record buying public: it sold 20 million copies), and recorded it in the same sessions for the "Elvis Is Back" LP, about two weeks after he got out of the Army.

"It's now or never / It's now or never, / come hold me tight / Kiss me my darling, / be mine tonight / Tomorrow will be too late, / it's now or never / My love won't wait. / When I first saw you / with your smile so tender / My heart was captured, / my soul surrendered / I'd spend a lifetime / waiting for the right time / Now that you're near / the time is here at last. / It's now or never, / come hold me tight / Kiss me my darling, / be mine tonight / Tomorrow will be too late, / it's now or never / My love won't wait. / Just like a willow, / we would cry an ocean / If we lost true love / and sweet devotion / Your lips excite me, / let your arms invite me / For who knows when / we'll meet again this way / It's now or never, / come hold me tight / Kiss me my darling, / be mine tonight / Tomorrow will be too late, / it's now or never / My love won't wait."

 

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