Sunday, September 6, 2015
TONY BENNETT AT 89
The album will include 14 of the most canonical songs by Kern, who composed hundreds for the Broadway stage. On half of the album Mr. Bennett performs with Mr. Charlap’s longtime trio. Several tracks feature a piano duo, with Mr. Charlap and Renee Rosnes (who are also husband and wife).
And on a few tracks, including “The Way You Look Tonight,” Mr. Bennett and Mr. Charlap work as a duo, consciously evoking Mr. Bennett’s collaboration with Bill Evans, which yielded a pair of highly regarded albums in the 1970s. (This spring, Fantasy released “The Complete Tony Bennett/Bill Evans Recordings,” a 4-LP boxed set, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of their first release.)
Mr. Bennett, who turned 89 this month, has devoted just a handful of his many previous albums to the work of a single composer or songwriting team. His focus in recent years has been on high-profile collaborations: last fall he had a No. 1 album in “Cheek to Cheek” (Streamline/Columbia/Interscope), sharing the honor with Lady Gaga, with whom he also just finished a major tour. He hit No. 1 in 2011 with “Duets II,” which featured Lady Gaga among a glittery array of guests, including Amy Winehouse and Aretha Franklin.
“Cheek to Cheek” included the Jerome Kern tune “I Won’t Dance,” which Lady Gaga and Mr. Bennett turned into a coy stage routine...