Tony Bennett

Tony Bennett, who passed away this morning, was more than a hero to me. In my mind he was a downright miracle.

I saw him in concert several times, and each time was an astonishment. In addition to being the most sensitive and emotionally intelligent interpreter in our time of the Great American Songbook, he had incredible vocal power.

I remember him, during a recent NYC concert, telling the audience how wonderful the acoustics were there at Radio City Music Hall. Then to show us what he meant, he asked the tech crew to turn off all the amplification.

He then proceeded to belt out an a cappella rendition of the Bart Howard classic In Other Words. His unamplified voice easily filled that cavernous space. And this was when the man was already in his nineties.

Until today, the romantic in me had managed to convince myself that Tony Bennett would continue to live forever. But in a way, he will. Like the man said:

      Let the music play as long as there’s a song to sing
      And I will stay younger than spring

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