Although Tony Bennett was unable to attend the Grammy Awards himself this year, his musical partner Lady Gaga gave a beautifully touching performance as a tribute to the jazz icon.
Tony, 95, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2021. He still enjoys music and singing but is unable to perform like he used to.
In a pre-recorded video, Tony introduced Lady Gaga ahead of her performance. She sang their songs Do I Love You and Love for Sale with a large band arrangement and paid tribute to Tony.
Lady Gaga in tears after her tribute to Tony Bennett at the GRAMMYs
Lady Gaga’s performance was paired with a video montage of clips of the two sharing the stage together.
Following her emotional tribute, Lady Gaga sat down on the edge of the stage and began to cry as she placed her own hand over her shoulder in place of his.
She said, “I love you, Tony, I miss you,” while being met with a standing ovation. It was announced ahead of time that Tony would be at home for the Grammy Awards but cheering on Lady Gaga from afar.
His son and manager, Danny Bennett, released a statement to Variety expressing Tony’s joy for the award nominations, saying, “Tony is beyond thrilled, particularly at the young age of 95, to once again be recognized along with his musical collaborator and dear friend Lady Gaga by the Recording Academy for their album Love for Sale. To have the album nominated in six categories, including Album of the Year and Record of the Year, is an incredible honor.”
However, the statement was bittersweet. Danny continued, “Although the producers had invited both Tony and Gaga to perform in Sunday’s Grammys broadcast, it is unfortunate that due to his continuing struggle with Alzheimer’s, he was not able to accept. It was decided that it would be fitting for Lady Gaga to perform on her own to represent for both of them.”
Danny went on to say that though Love for Sale is Tony’s last album, Tony “will be cheering her on as he watches from his home in New York City.”
Their album had several nominations, and the duet did take home a win Sunday night.
Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett win three Grammy Awards
Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga received several nominations for I Get A Kick Out Of You and Love For Sale, including Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, and Best Music Video.
They won Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album and Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical.
The Grammy Awards website lists six total nominations with two wins, making Tony Bennett the second-oldest person to receive a GRAMMY.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the oldest Grammy Award winner is blues pianist Pinetop Perkins at 97-years-old. Tony Bennett has won 20 Grammy awards, including the lifetime achievement award in 2001. Despite his Alzheimer’s diagnosis, the star still loves to sing.
Along with his family, Tony remembers Lady Gaga and knows she is a dear friend. Lady Gaga has made strong impressions on several celebrities, and it is clear to her fans that she cares deeply for her friends and the music she makes with them.
Although Tony Bennett won’t be releasing more music, he will always have a strong bond with Lady Gaga.