Bobby McFerrin: One of the Natural Wonders of the Music World

Topics: Singing, Bobby McFerrin, Opera Pages: 3 (985 words) Published: January 13, 2011
It was a really hard task for me to choose one single American interpret to write about, since I admire loads of them. Eventually I have decided to briefly describe an amazing work of my beloved vocalist, innovator, improvisator and (as the critics say) ‘one of the natural wonders of the music world’- Bobby McFerrin. This extraordinary musician impressed me with his art of singing like no one else before. When I heard his four-octave range vocal for the first time, I could do nothing but stare open-mouthed. McFerrin is such a genius that singing common ‘human’ tones is no longer challenging him. Thereby, Bobby has widened his repertoire by making sounds of various musical instruments. Basically, it takes him no effort to produce a bass or a trumpet line of any song. Furthermore he is even able to sing Bach’s prelude used in the ‘Ave Maria‘piece. Bobby McFerrin is not only an excellent singer; he is also a great composer and a renowned classical conductor. He manages to combine elements of jazz, folk, choral, a capella and classical music in his work, which makes it extremely unique and colourful. Most people know McFerrin thanks to his commercial hit ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy,’ which comes from the album ‘Simple Pleasures’ (1988). According to Bobby himself it took only about an hour to write the famous lyrics. He also claims he did not do a single thing to promote the song and admits that hearing ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’ on the radio keeps surprising him. I personally like this song a lot but the truth is that Bobby wrote much more interesting pieces. The gained commercial success luckily did not spoil McFerrin’s musical taste. He went on composing his unique music and did not try to slip into the muddy waters of pop music. Bobby comes from a musical family so his great talent is kind of expected. Both his parents were opera singers. Furthermore, his father Robert McFerrin Sr. was the first African-American male soloist at the Metropolitan Opera in New...
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