Tony Bennett Shares His Favorite Music on New CD
By Doug Levine
13 August 2003
Lots of people have their favorite Tony Bennett song. Maybe it's Because Of You or Left My Heart In San Francisco. Even today's younger fans, the ones who bought his Unplugged album by the millions, have a few of their own. But what are Tony's favorites? A new CD has been released of classic pop and jazz handpicked by Tony himself titled Tony Bennett: Artist's Choice.
It's no surprise that Tony Bennett's favorite music comes from the Great American Songbook, including Cole Porter's Too Darn Hot, performed by Mel Torme. Many of Bennett's own hits were drawn from the "golden era of music," peppered with pop standards by Johnny Mercer, "Yip" Harburg, Duke Ellington, Harold Arlen, and George and Ira Gershwin.
One of Tony Bennett's closest friends was crooner Frank Sinatra, whose version of Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer's One For My Baby (And One More For The Road) is why Bennett calls him "quite simply, the best."
Of all the recordings of One For My Baby (And One More For The Road), Tony Bennett picked Frank Sinatra's for the new CD Tony Bennett: Artist's Choice.
Bennett is a lifelong fan of great jazz vocalists. One of his heroes was Louis Armstrong, who performs Mack The Knife on the album. Bennett agreed with the late jazz trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie when he said, "Without Louis Armstrong there would be no me."
Tony Bennett regarded Judy Garland as the greatest entertainer that ever lived. Millions of music and movie fans think so, too. Her signature song is Over The Rainbow, from one of the greatest films of all time, The Wizard Of Oz.
And speaking of signature songs, how about Rosemary Clooney's Tenderly, Duke Ellington's Take The 'A' Train, Doris Day's Sentimental Journey, Billie Holiday's I Wished On The Moon, and Nat "King" Cole's Straighten Up And Fly Right, all featured on Tony Bennett: Artist's Choice.
Other releases in the Artist's Choice series include picks by Sheryl Crow, The Rolling Stones, Ray Charles, Lucinda Williams and Yo Yo Ma.