Show tunes are featured on the new album of inspirational tunes, "The Spirit of America," sung by tenor Daniel Rodriguez, the New York City police officer who has thrilled audiences at baseball games and public events before and after the Sept. 11 attacks on America.
The new 12-track disc, on the Manhattan Records label, gets released Feb. 12, and includes Irving Berlin's "God Bless America," Frank Wildhorn's "This is the Moment" (from Jekyll & Hyde) and "Into the Fire" (from The Scarlet Pimpernel), Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil's "Bring Him Home" (from Les Misérables) and Rodgers and Hammerstein's "You'll Never Walk Alone" (from Carousel). Tom Scott produces. Choir, chorus and full orchestra enhance the songs.
The album also features a new song, "We Will Go On," by Joe Mardin, "Shenandoah" (the traditional), "Danny Boy," "The Lord's Prayer," "Ave Maria," "The House I Live In" (by Lewis Allen and Earl Robinson, previously sung by Frank Sinatra for a short film) and "America the Beautiful."
Brooklyn native Rodriguez began singing at 10. He has appeared in opera and musical theatre productions in the New York City area and is now sings as part of the NYPD's ceremonial division. In March, Rodriguez will study with Placido Domingo at the Washington Opera Company for three months and will be assigned to the Washington Police Department while there.
— By Kenneth Jones