Tony Bennett pledges to ‘do something for Trump’

Tony Bennett pledges to ‘do something for Trump’


norman lebrecht

November 16, 2017

The veteran entertainer, 91, received the Gershwin Prize today.

During the election campaign, he sang for Hillary.

And now?

During the election run-up, Bennett performed at fundraisers for Hillary Clinton.

Before the show, Bennett told reporters, “Washington is the greatest city in the greatest country in the world.” And to those who don’t care for the current Administration? “Well that’s their problem,” he answered, noting he knows the current President “very well,” and a performance for Donald Trump is likely. “Sooner or later I’ll probably be doing something for him,” he said.

More here.


  • Sue says:

    When is this old gargoyle going to understand he hasn’t been able to sing adequately for a quarter of a century? It’s demonstrably embarrassing.

    • Colin says:

      Thank you. You are the voice of reason in a world of nostalgia.

    • another jim says:

      Actually I think he has become a far superior singer in his old age to the singer he was when he was younger. In his younger days he was something of a bombastic belter. His performances were mostly loud and shallow. But now that he can’t bellow any more he pays more attention to the words and the feeling of what he’s singing. I guess he always knew how to do that, but his bread and butter came from making a big noise. Now it’s about the song and not his voice. When I see reruns of his old tv appearances from the 60’s I usually cringe, but I treasure his more recent performances.

  • Old Man in the Midwest says:

    He is now an actor not singer. Shut up and get on with it.

  • Elizabeth Owen says:

    Maybe they can swap tips on hair care?

  • Steve P says:

    Run for US Senate from AL? Not sure what else he could do for Trump at this point – voice is shot.

  • Dan P. says:

    Perhaps someone can explain what compels the nastiness exhibited by some of these posters. Maybe it’s meant to pass as humor or to show one’s superiority – but, let’s face it, it’s very juvenile.

    I can’t imagine anyone having any evidence to contradict the fact that Tony Bennett is anything but a first class musician, with a style and sound that is as unmistakeably his, as, say, the voices of Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Elizabeth Schwartzkopf are theirs. And, at least if his recent recordings of duets are any indication, he is still enjoyable to listen to and has something to contribute. Obviously, no older singer can compete in certain ways with their younger selves, but his artistry comes in using what he still has to carry the music. That he can do anything at 91 should be praised. Most of us will never even come close to that number while we’re still above ground. If you’ve ever seen those duets on TV, just look at the expressions on the faces of his partners as they perform. That says everything about what they think of Tony Bennett.

    • Glenn Hardy says:

      Dan P, thank you for your comment. The “classical” music bubble world certainly has a long and storied track record of snarky snobbery. Obviously, the beat goes on.

      As for Tony’s possible performance for Trump…well…Frank would not be pleased!

      • Sue says:

        I don’t think it’s snobbery at all, which is a sly retort when somebody makes a legitimate complaint. Bennett has been an embarrassment to the popular music industry for over 20 years with his shambolic voice control and attempts to stay “relevant”. There is a reason the words “has-been” have been invented and that’s not snobbery, it’s an unpleasant fact.

        But, conversely, if you believe in everything you actually believe in nothing. Think about it.

        • Dan P. says:

          You know, I hadn’t noticed anyone chosen to represent the “popular music industry” expressing their embarrassment. What I have noticed, however, is how gracious he has been to younger performers and what a decent human being he appears to be. And, he can probably sing better than any other 90-year-old. Certainly his musicianship has not dulled one iota. You may not like his voice at this stage of his life – and that’s fine – but to call someone a has-been just because they’re not in their prime is just childish. I can just imagine the eye-rolling and giggling that would go along with it the expression. It’s so 1960s teenager..

          • Sue says:

            Okey dokey; the words “has been” have been struck out of the book of acceptable language. We await the instantiation of it through some government legislation now.

            Do people buy tickets because somebody is “nice”? Oh, that’s right – Andre Rieu. Silly me.

          • Dan P. says:

            Sue, actually, I wasn’t saying that the words “has been” weren’t acceptable or that, in fact, any word was unacceptable and should be banned, but just that your reaction to Mr. Bennett was more than a tad childish. That’s all. Otherwise, we disagree about Mr. Bennett’s art but when it comes to music, everyone has deeply held disagreements about performers – even with their closest friends. Arguments can be very instructive but they become increasingly less so when they simply resort to name calling. That’s the childish part.

  • Old Man in the Midwest says:

    I think that everyone agrees that Mr Bennett is a treasure and true to his art.

    My guess is that the snide comments have more to do with his choice to appear at the White House if requested given the character of the person who currently resides there.

    • Steve P says:

      Not in my case. Love the dude in office, but don’t have much use for Tony. If he’d have stepped up to sing at the inauguration when all the major artists were rushing to be the first to announce their refusal i’d have been impressed.

  • William Safford says:

    He could sing the Woody Guthrie song “Old Man Trump” at the White House. That would be a propos.