Tony Bennett Song Book
The Ultimate American Songbook Vol. 1 is a dream project for Tony Bennett, who personally chose the 15-song program from his Columbia repertoire. Literally hundreds of singers have recorded versions of these songs over the years, but Tony Bennett is in the rare class of artists who actually took part in many of the original presentations. The songs on this definitive collection of popular standards cover three distinct decades of recording by Tony Bennett on Columbia:
The 1950s: 1958’s “Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye” originally from the 1944 Cole Porter Broadway musical, Seven Lively Arts; and 1959’s “Taking A Chance On Love” from the 1940 Vernon Duke Broadway musical, Cabin In The Sky.
The 1960s: 1962’s Live At Carnegie Hall version of the 1934 Cole Porter gem, “Anything Goes”; 1962’s “You’ll Never Get Away From Me” from Stephen Sondheim’s 1959 Broadway musical, Gypsy; then a pair from Tony’s 1964 album When Lights Are Low – Fats Waller’s “Ain’t Misbehavin’” which dates to 1929, and the Gus Kahn/Isham Jones chestnut, “It Had To Be You” from the 1932 RKO film, Show Business; the 1966 recording of Ray Noble’s “The Very Thought Of You” from 1934; 1967’s “They Can’t Take That Away From Me” which dates back to the 1937 Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers RKO film, Shall We Dance; and an undated ’60s session with the Dave Brubeck Quartet on Harold Arlen & Johnny Mercer’s “That Old Black Magic,” from the 1942 Paramount film, Star Spangled Rhythm.
The 1990s: Three tracks from 1992’s Sinatra tribute Perfectly Frank, which brought Tony his first Grammy Award in 30 years, starting with the Gershwins’ “A Foggy Day” from the 1937 RKO film, A Damsel In Distress, and 1938’s “I’ll Be Seeing You” and “You Go To My Head,” all three of which are associated with the Columbia recordings of Billie Holiday, the primal vocal influence on Sinatra and Bennett; 1997’s “She's Funny That Way” from the tribute album to Billie, Tony Bennett On Holiday; and from that same year, Tony’s contribution to the My Best Friend’s Wedding movie soundtrack album, Jerome Kern’s “The Way You Look Tonight,” yet another song associated with Billie; and from 1994’s RIAA platinum two-time Grammy Award-winning MTV Unplugged comes the duet with k.d. lang on “Moonglow,” the sixth song in this series associated with Billie Holiday.