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The First Second Caruso


James A. Drake


Jussi Björling, musicians, tenors, Caruso, Gigli


I don’t want to be another Caruso; I just want to be Gigli,” said the tenor who inherited many of Caruso’s lyric roles after his sudden death in 1921. Over the years, other tenors have expressed similar reservations, sincere or otherwise, about the “second Caruso” label which Beniamino Gigli addressed in his memoirs. Yet there actually was a “second Caruso”: the legendary tenor’s son and namesake, Enrico Caruso, Jr., whom I was privileged to meet at a social event in Tampa, Florida.

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