Nicknamed "the People's Tenor" (since he likes to chat with and seeks feedback from his fans), Watson converted more than a few opera naysayers as he covered such contemporary compositions as Freddie Mercury's "Barcelona (Friends Until the End)," Ultravox's "Vienna," and Simon & Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water," in addition to the standards. With major success in the U.K., Europe, and Australia, Watson returned with his second album, Encore, just a year later, and 2002 saw the release of his platinum-selling third album Reprise. Amore Musica came in 2004, and while about to record its follow-up, Watson was diagnosed with a brain tumor. After a successful operation and recovery he returned to the studio to continue recording his fifth album, 2007's That's Life. With the tumor recurring just a year after the first operation, he returned again to hospital for emergency surgery, yet his sixth release, Outside In, came just a month later in November of 2007.
Returning to his musical career in 2008 with a new outlook on life, Watson released his eighth studio album, People Get Ready that same year. After signing a new contract with Sony in 2010, he returned to his classical roots with La Voce. A collection of classical and operatic songs recorded with the Roma Sinfonietta, the album was well-received by the press and seen as a return to form for the tenor. Tying in with the 2012 London Olympics and the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, Watson released a patriotic tenth album, Anthems: Music to Inspire a Nation, in May 2012. ~ Greg Prato & Rich Wilson, Rovi