I have to tell ya, I am impressed. I went youtubing (sounds like something you do on a river doesn’t it?) for an Alejandro Sanz song and came across the following video:
I had somehow missed that these two had collaborated last year. For those who do not know him, Alejandro Sanz is one of the most famous Spanish singers to come out of Spain. He has been popular for over 20 years being known for his emotionally sung and poetically written ballads. He is one of my favorite singers of all time.
I was a little hesitant when I pressed play because the title was in English and as much as I love Ale Sanz, his English accent is not so great. His part however, is mainly in Spanish and it is lovely.
But that is not what drew me to write a blog on this subject. Lord knows I could go on and on about Sanz and the influence that he has had on me emotionally and linguistically.
I wanted to discuss instead, Tony Bennett. How brilliant is this man?! He is taking a musical genre that has not graced the ears of many of the younger generations and bringing it to the forefront again, long past its prime. He is bringing back the crooner-era songs by mixing them with young, mainstream and sometimes controversial artists. Sure, we expect him to do a duet with Norah Jones, Diana Krall or Natalie Cole, but did you ever picture Tony Bennett with the likes of Lady Gaga, Queen Latifah or Juanes? I can’t say they were on my list of most wanted collaborations. However, this is a wonderful idea on so many levels.
On a musical and business level, Mr. Bennett in his young age of 85, has revived his career and given himself a younger image through his association with all of the young mainstream artists. Where some elders may shun the musicians of current music or ‘noise’ as they may call it, he embraces it. He is embracing the new as well as making sure that this genre, these beautiful songs of his more youthful days do not fade so quickly as records and radio play are overcome by the digital era.
On a social level, he is bridging the generation gap. He is introducing old songs to the new generation and giving them something they can share with their grandparents. We could use a little more of that these days, don’t ya think?
So hats off to you Mr. Bennett for taking the road less traveled by.
- Tony Bennett at 85 and still fearing failure! (theengagingbrand.typepad.com)
- Video exclusive: Watch Tony Bennett’s duet with Aretha Franklin – How Do You Keep the Music Playing? (telegraph.co.uk)
- Bennett takes Lady Gaga, others back to basics (cbsnews.com)