Saturday, 30 July 2011


“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes.” - Charles R. Swindol

The Concierto de Aranjuez is a composition for classical guitar and orchestra by the Spanish composer Joaquín Rodrigo (1901-1999). The piece was written in 1939, and it is probably Rodrigo’s best-known work. Its success established the composer’s reputation as one of the most significant Spanish composers of the twentieth century.

The concerto is in three movements, fast, quick, slow, with the guitar taking pride of place and never having to counter the full orchestral forces. The second movement is a sublime recollection of melancholy and supreme heartbreak. Rodrigo and his wife Victoria stayed silent for many years about the inspiration for the second movement. In her autobiography, however, Victoria eventually declared that it was both an evocation of the happy days of their honeymoon and a response to Rodrigo’s devastation at the miscarriage of their first pregnancy. It was composed in 1939 in Paris.

Whenever I hear this piece of music I cannot get out of my mind that Rodrigo its composer was blind since the age of three. For me there is a palpable sense of loss in the music. Loss of the sense of sight is one interpretation. Loss of a child is another. Loss of a lover, yet another. Whatever the inspiration for its composer, the listener will interpret it in their own way biased by their own life experiences.

There have been many arrangements of this second movement, many of them vocal. Here is one sung by the countertenor Fernando Lima.


  1. Had not heard it sung before. Beautiful!

  2. That is so gorgeous Nic!!!!
    I love the sound of Spanish and this song is wonderful.... I'll listen to it another time now!!!!

  3. This is one of my favorite pieces of music. I don't generally like vocals added on the classics, but this is nice!