Legendary singer Tony Bennett, best known for singing “I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” has died, according to his longtime publicist, Sylvia Weiner. He was 96 years-old.
Bennett was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2017.
His official Facebook page wrote:
Tony, because of you we have your songs in our heart forever.
Born in Astoria, Queens in 1926, his original name was Anthony Dominick Benedetto.
Bennett got his start with Columbia Records in 1950 after catching his big break from Bob Hope. After hearing Bennett sing in a nightclub, Hope invited him to perform alongside him at New York’s Paramount Theatre. And the rest is history…
He went onto release hits including: “Boulevard of Broken Dreams,” “Because of You,” “Cold, Cold Heart,” “Stranger in Paradise,” “Just in Time,” and “Rags to Riches.”
Bennett returned to the top of the singles charts in 1962 with his biggest hit, “I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” which became his signature song.
Later in life, Bennett collaborated with Lady Gaga for Duets II and Cheek to Cheek. They performed jazz standards from the Great American Songbook together in 2021.
Bennett was a Grammy and Emmy Award winner, a Gershwin Award and Kennedy Center honoree and an accomplished visual artist with three of his original paintings in the Smithsonian Institute’s permanent collection.
With his wife Susan Benedetto, he established Exploring the Arts to support arts education in public high schools, which was initiated by the creation of Frank Sinatra School of the Arts in Astoria, Queens.