The world has lost a legend. Tony Bennett, the iconic singer who charmed generations with his voice and songs, has passed away at 96, his publicist announced on Friday . Tony Bennett had been living with Alzheimer’s disease since 2016, but he never stopped singing and making music until the end.
Table of Contents
A life of music and art
Tony Bennett was born as Anthony Dominick Benedetto in 1926 to Italian immigrant parents in Queens, New York. He began singing as a kid and worked as a singing waiter as a teen.
In 1962, Tony Bennett recorded his unmistakable tune “I Left My Heart in San Francisco”, which procured him two Grammy grants and turned into an image for the city. He continued to record and performing all through the 60s and 70s, yet confronted challenges from the ascent of rock and roll, illicit drug use and monetary issues.
He also worked with younger artists such as k.d. lang, Amy Winehouse, Lady Gaga and John Legend, showing his relevance and flexibility across genres. He won 19 Grammy awards in total. In 2001, He also won a lifetime achievement award. He also received other honors such as the Kennedy Center Honors in 2005 and the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song in 2017.
He was married three times. His third wife, Susan Benedetto, was his former fan club president and 40 years younger than him. They married in 2007 and stayed together until his death. He also pursued his other passion of painting under his real name and showed his works in galleries around the world.
Tony Bennett: A legacy of love
Bennett’s death has triggered a wave of tributes from fans, celebrities and politicians who admired his voice, style and personality. His wife Susan posted a touching tribute on his Instagram page, saying: “You are my love forever” . His son Danny thanked everyone for their condolences and said: “His legacy will live on forever” . Lady Gaga, who recorded two albums with him, called him “a friend for life” . President Joe Biden said he was “a national treasure”.