Raphael gave last night at the Jardins de Pedralbes a display of strength of his own before an audience that received him standing up, shouted "handsome" and after proclaiming him "the greatest!" He thoroughly enjoyed the repertoire of the boy from Linares, whose vocal strength never ceases to amaze, with more than 20 infallible songs.
With the tune of I am that, Raphael stood on stage, lordly and domineering, to the taste of his people, who are of all kinds and coats, twinned by the adoration of the artist. And there was a candlelight for everyone because with Living like this is dying of love, by the longed-for Camilo Sesto, he already unleashed the intonations of the respectable, who with Say what they say and My big night got up from the seats. With a good voice, a sixty-year career and such a repertoire, Raphael does what he wants and goes on and on and on.
Raphael likewise exalts that everyone says and does what they want as he returns to his origins as a neighborhood parish choir, read the Ave Maria and the Alleluia, which turned the Jardins de Pedralbes into a branch church in Harlem.
At Raphael's recitals the public comes sung and leaves sung and satisfied. That's so many registers in a single function. There is never a lack of romantic stretch, consolation for divorcees, marriageable girls and that grandmother or mother-in-law who is never missing from the public because those who love her so much have given her a couple of tickets and there she is, happy and fresh from the hairdresser.
Nor was there a lack of outburst, disheveled songs and tremendous songs, such as the finals En carne viva , Escándalo and Como yo te amo . The cliché already says it: the theater collapsed.
Like any artist son of a neighbor, Raphael evolves. And if someone wants him bad, let him say that Raphael reinvents himself. The great ones don't reinvent themselves! The old soldiers never die, perhaps they fade although, well in voice, it is not the case. There he was, sitting down, with how difficult it is to sing sitting down, so hot, so firm, reeling off I can't get you out of me.
Raphael's public, the most loyal, long-lived and throbbing public that a Spanish artist can have, is not for alchemy and demands the usual Raphael, the boy from Linares, vintage 43, and this one, the very cute one, manages to seem so current, without giving up memory based on taking care of the details.
The crooked Rafaelista in Barcelona filled the Jardins de Pedralbes, as Sant Jordi fills every winter. It is what the artist has: he is like a nail wherever his public awaits him. Raphael gives the viewer professionalism and seal, he never gets into puddles – and they have been on stage for 60 years. The puddle, in any case, crosses it, as he will do this year in October, for that vintage of making the Americas.
And between the public and the artist, what if today you, tomorrow I, Raphael's concerts, point six, point less, end up being an apotheosis. There is no one who comes out muttering “I will never see this guy again”. There is a boy from Linares for a while...