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An opera singers take on #41

There are some artists that have attempted to cover DMB's songs through the years, and when one genre trys to cover another, it could be brilliant or a train-wreck. There are plenty of examples of artists covering DMB. Willie Nelson on "Gravedigger", Kenny Chesney on "Where are you Going" and Stevie Nicks on "Crash into Me" to name a few. As DMB fans, whether you love or hate these covers, the artist plays to their ability and trys to interpret the song on a level that makes it their own, just as Dave Matthews Band has done with various covers that they have done. It comes as a rare occasion, and maybe a surprise that an opera singer would take on a DMB classic, but it is very refreshing to see. 

Canadian Soprano Ashleigh Semkiw performed a cover of Dave Matthews Band "#41" while warming up during an opera recording session. This performance was recorded and posted via youtube just a few weeks ago...

Ashleigh has sung most recently in Operas with Lorin Maazel, was a young artist with Chicago Opera Theater and honored Sir Ian McKellan at the Harman center gala this past year in D.C.

So why does an opera singer cover a DMB song? What other reason is there than simply just being a fan, and Ashleigh is indeed a fan.

dbtp.org asked Ashleigh what her inspiration was behind choosing to sing "#41" and what her thoughts were on Dave Matthews Band, she replied:

"Not only is their music great, but they represent musicianship that is lacking in so much in the major performers that are popular today. DMB's music is accessible but layered, and their ability to execute and deliver outstanding performances - LIVE - is something that is really important to me as a musician. They are highly skilled musicians, and coming from the classical music world, you value these things. You realize the amount of practice and dedication it takes to play at their level, so from a very young age I was attracted to their sound because it was rich and intelligent and soulful."

Ashleigh expressed to dbtp.org, "Most of my performing is done in opera and classical performances, but I love to use what I know about music and apply it to other genres. And I love DMB's music."

She chose "#41" to warm up with during her studio session because while it is one of her favorite DMB songs (along with "Don't Drink The Water" and "The Stone"), she also loves singing other genres of music and felt that singing "#41" was a good way to warm up her voice in a way that isn't the traditional vocal "warm up" of scales and arpeggios.

Her voice is powerful and strong and truly takes this DMB classic to another level.

What do you think of Ashleigh Semkiw's take on "#41"?

Dave Matthews to play "Music Saves Mountains" concert: May 19th

2010 Dave Matthews Band European Tour