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Tony Bennett: Forty Years — The Artistry of Tony Bennett (Columbia/legacy)

Mark Rowland, Musician, September 1991

THERE'S NO ONE so cold as a cold Italian, the saying goes. And as this lovingly crafted, four-CD boxed set demonstrates, there's none so warm as a warm one. There is much to admire about Tony Bennett's way with a song — his relaxed rhythms, sensitivity to lyric nuance, taste in arrangers and accompanists, a vocal technique that can whisper ballads and climb crescendos with equal constancy, and, not least these days, stay in tune. These are the tools of a great singer. But what really makes us care about Tony Bennett is his radiance of spirit. He reminds us that music is, in the broadest sense, the language of love.

Total word count of piece: 440


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