Tony Bennett announced details of his upcoming 85th birthday bash plus delivered news about new duets with Lady Gaga and Aretha Franklin. Here is the official word:
Legendary performer Tony Bennett celebrates a milestone birthday on August 3rd when he turns 85. Bennett's official 85th birthday celebration will be held on Sunday, September 18th following his debut performance at the Metropolitan Opera House. The elegant invitation only supper will take place directly after the concert and will be hosted by Alec Baldwin with a special performance by Sir Elton John. The event honors Bennett's Exploring the Arts organization which funds and supports arts education in all five boroughs in New York City.
But "the best is yet to come" with news that the singer has just completed recording with Lady Gaga and Aretha Franklin for his highly anticipated DUETS II CD adding to a celebrated list of artists previously announced including Michael Buble, Norah Jones, John Mayer, Queen Latifah, Carrie Underwood, Amy Winehouse and many others.
Lady Gaga joined Tony for a rendition of the Rogers and Hart song, "The Lady Is A Tramp" and Bennett and Franklin collaborated on the Alan and Marilyn Bergman classic, "How Do You Keep The Music Playing." Both tracks were recorded live in the studio in New York City at the end of last month. A full listing of the artist and song roster follows this release.
Pre-orders for DUETS II are available Tuesday, August 2nd on iTunes and Amazon and bn.com. iTunes, in an exclusive offering, will allow fans to receive Tony's duet with Michael Buble, "Don't Get Around Much Anymore," instantly upon placing a pre-order for the album on iTunes. Additionally, the video for the Bennett/Buble track is available free this week on iTunes and showcases the great vocal chemistry between the two artists. Pre-orders through www.tonybennett.com will get fans an exclusive video of Tony and k.d. lang's duet of "Blue Velvet," as well as an instant MP3 download of the track. DUETS II will be in stores on September 20.