Facts about Tony Bennett

Tony Bennett is 90 years old
Born: August 3, 1926
Best known as: The crooner who did "I Left My Heart in San Francisco"

     
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Tony Bennett Biography

Name at birth: Anthony Dominick Benedetto

Tony Bennett is an American pop singer, a classic “crooner” whose popularity in the 1950s was overshadowed by his lengthy comeback in the 21st Century. He’s best known for his 1962 signature tune, “I Left My Heart in San Francisco.”

Tony Bennett’s first hit was the string-heavy ballad “Because of You” in 1951. But later in the 1950s he turned to a more jazz-oriented style of singing, and during the 1960s and ’70s he recorded with several jazz greats, including Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Bill Evans. As the popularity of rock music rose in the same period, his career suffered.

But Tony Bennett bounced back in the 1990s, being rediscovered as a charming master stylist who landed somewhere between Perry Como and Frank Sinatra. His 1994 MTV Unplugged appearance won him a new audience, and the recording of the show won a Grammy for album of the year. In later years he has toured frequently and released duets with Lady Gaga and other youngsters.

One of the most celebrated American singers of the last half century, Tony Bennett won more than a dozen Grammys during his career. His first came in 1962, winning both record of the year and best solo vocal performance for “I Left My Heart In San Francisco.” Five decades later he was still at it, winning the best traditional pop vocal album Grammy for The Silver Lining: The Songs of Jerome Kern. He also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Grammys in 2001.

Extra credit

Tony Bennett says he got his stage name from Bob Hope.


     

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