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Tony Bennett: Duets II


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Audio CD, September 20, 2011
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Tony Bennett: DUETS II

Less than ten months before he would celebrate his 85th birthday, Tony Bennett stood on the field of AT&T Park in San Francisco during the 7th inning of the first game of the 2010 World Series between the Giants and Texas Rangers (San Francisco would go on to win the championship in 5 games). This was his second time “at bat” during the game. ... Read more in Amazon's Tony Bennett Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 20, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Columbia
  • ASIN: B0052GACNM
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (499 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #348 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Lady Is A Tramp
2. One For My Baby (And One More For The Road)
3. Body And Soul
4. Don't Get Around Much Anymore
5. Blue Velvet
6. How Do You Keep The Music Playing
7. The Girl I Love
8. On The Sunny Side Of The Street
9. Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me)
10. Speak Low
11. This Is All I Ask
12. Watch What Happens
13. Stranger In Paradise
14. The Way You Look Tonight
15. Yesterday I Heard The Rain
16. It Had To Be You
17. When Do The Bells Ring For Me

Editorial Reviews

DUETS II is the follow-up to Tony Bennett's multi-platinum CD, DUETS, which was released in conjunction with Tony's 80th birthday in 2006. DUETS won three Grammy Awards and was the singer's best selling album to date.

Now the legendary performer celebrates a milestone 85th birthday with the release of DUETS II. The singer has completed recording with Lady Gaga and Aretha Franklin, adding to a celebrated list of artists previously announced including Amy Winehouse, Michael Buble, Norah Jones, John Mayer, Queen Latifah, Carrie Underwood and many others. Lady Gaga joined Tony for a rendition of the Richard Rodgers song, "The Lady Is A Tramp" and Bennett and Franklin collaborated on the Alan and Marilyn Bergman classic, "How Do You Keep The Music Playing."

Phil Ramone produced the original DUETS as well as DUETS II.

Customer Reviews

His voice projects his soul into every note he sings.
John Pereyo
[I just wrote her off as a goofball.] Yet she was just marvelous and I'd love to hear her sing more legit songs again.
James Blanchard
I've bought several copies of this DVD/CD for myself and several of my friends.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

134 of 152 people found the following review helpful By Rudy Palma on September 20, 2011
Format: Audio CD
Is it any surprise that Tony Bennett presides over this collection of songs like a loving parent, nurturing each of them to ensure beauty results? No, of course not.

Indelibly present and in fine, oaken voice, his turn of phrase is expressive as ever. In fact, Bennett's warmth and charisma are still so strong they sometimes obscure the presence of his duet partners who simply do not have hearts as big as his to offer listeners.

"Duets II" is much like the initial 2006 duets collection in that it is a glossy, sugary-sweet excursion into smoothed-over pop vocal performances with Mr. Bennett's skills guiding the way, singing life into all the nooks and crannies whether or not he and his given duet partner are a suitable pairing. His personality and status as America's foremost singer of songs must guide the way.

Of note is his work with the late Amy Winehouse on "Body and Soul," a heartbreaking, apt tune for the chanteuse's final recording. Both are in their element, and the result is fraught with unrequited longing and slow-burning desperation. It is a fortunate teaming of two great talents bathed in instant pathos in its reminder of how fleeting art, like life, can be. Winehouse's voice was a fine instrument indeed, and "Body and Soul" showcases it.

Duet partners who earn their keep on this collection include k.d. lang, Willie Nelson, Norah Jones, Natalie Cole, Andrea Bocelli, Faith Hill, Lady Gaga, Queen Latifah, Josh Groban and Alejandro Sanz, whose passion fills the timeless "Yesterday I Heard the Rain."

Hill, in particular, sounds so enchanting alongside Bennett on "The Way You Look Tonight" that a full album collaboration between the pair would be a welcome prospect. "Speak Low" with Ms.
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48 of 59 people found the following review helpful By Caponsacchi HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 22, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
At the time of the release of the 2 best-selling albums of Sinatra's career, the Duets albums from the mid-'90s, I was elated. Many of us simply didn't want to believe, in fact rejected the unthinkable, i.e. that Sinatra was finished, so these latter-day gifts were sufficient cause for celebration. And for the first month or two after each of the two releases, I played them repeatedly. But soon the novelty wore off, and I had no interest in these concoctions, especially with the vast Columbia catalog, the priceless Capitol recordings with Nelson Riddle, the final extended chapter of his Reprise years all beckoning to be revisited. Apparently, others felt much the same (recently, I've seen either disc going for a buck or two used).

The Bennett Duets are less "tricked-up" than the Sinatra ones, which involved long-distance, call-in performances by his partners. Moreover, Tony sounds almost as good as ever, much more vibrant physically and in control musically than Ole Blue was after 1990. Moreover, the program comprises winning songs from the Great American Songbook, with Tony so confident and secure that, rather than being "carried" by any of his younger, more vigorous, partners, he's the one who makes up for their deficiencies with this material.

Perhaps the track with the greatest interest will be "Body and Soul" with Amy Winehouse. It's the most recorded popular tune in music history (check out the numbers at jazzstandards.com or allmusic.com), partly because much of its satisfaction comes from the challenge of executing it--difficult but ingenious and logical chords, unforgettable melody, mediocre lyrics--but Bennett and Winehouse (who sounds mature lightyears beyond her actual age) pull it off quite nicely.
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful By jasmine on September 20, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is an amazing album, from top to bottom. I had no idea how versatile some of the singers could be such as Carrie Underwood, Lady Gaga, Amy Winehouse, etc. I really enjoyed every single performance.

My favorites would have to be Carrie Underwood and Amy Winehouse, hands down. Both ladies capture a retro sound beautifully in their performances, and they compliment Tony very nicely.

It is a very nice mix of yesterday meets today's artists, without cheapening it or destroying the original song.

Bravo, Mr. Bennett. I see Grammys in your future (again!). :)
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Mark Blackburn on September 20, 2011
Format: Audio CD
"I don't know anyone that walks the face of the earth that doesn't want to sing with Tony Bennett"

-- Faith Hill

Thanks to the world's biggest website for its "related media" supplements, thoughtfully included for our viewing pleasure: I especially loved hearing Tony Bennett's own thoughts on his personal approach to song collaboration:

"So listen," (says the Master of this game) "my passion is still VERY strong. I'm 85. I wake up every morning and I love to sing. I love entertaining people. I will definitely KEEP performing . . . `cause I LOVE it! [This is] `My `Game'!

Those (like me) who've been students all our lives of `The Great American Songbook' are aware of stories and anecdotes about every standard on this album - all of them performed early or late in Tony Bennett's career. But it's great to know how Mr. Bennett's duet partners felt about their cherished "chance to sing with Tony."

Jazz singer John Mayer's astute observation:

"So, you're into the singing [with Tony] and thinking: `HERE's where we are: This is probably where he lives and won't go [stray] far from where we are now? But then . . . he'll go eight notes higher - where he hadn't been before. And you realize: `Oh! He's the most tasteful singer in the WORLD'."

At the end of their terrific duet [on one of Sinatra's signature tunes, ONE FOR MY BABY (AND ONE MORE FOR THE ROAD)] the two men trade quips. Bennett says: "Let's have another drink! Bartender - fill it up again, will ya? [and then] Sleep tight!" Mayer (as if pinching himself to see if he's really just sung with `The Master' quips to the recording engineer (or to producer Phil Ramone): "Can I get a copy of this?
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Topic From this Discussion
Lower tier Ladies
Yeah, Aretha Franklin is "lower tier" alright.

And your comments on Amy Winehouse are just unfortunate. Maybe it will take this duet with Tony for you to appreciate her talent. They sing "Body and Soul." And I'm really looking forward to it.
Jul 23, 2011 by mattyp4 |  See all 15 posts
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