There can be no doubt that the musical pairing of Lady Gaga with Tony Bennett is an almost unimaginably bizarre mixture. A more odd couple would be hard to imagine but somehow it works. The outlandish 29-year-old Lady Gaga with her peculiar sense of style paired with the suave and sophisticated Tony Bennett who is just days away from his 89th birthday. Last night the odd couple that is Gaga and Bennett came together to thrill the audience at the Montreux Jazz Festival with a performance that spanned the generations.
Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett were introduced to the Montreux audience by legendary producer Quincy Jones, who praised Lady Gaga as a singer who had “blown his mind.” Jones, who worked with Tony Bennett on his 1966 hit song “Girl Talk,” told the packed auditorium that Claude Nobs would have been thrilled to see Gaga and Bennett perform together at Montreux.
The Montreux Jazz Festival is one of Europe’s premier cultural events and is now in its 49th year. It attracts audiences from across the world to see some of the most famous acts in the music business. As New York’s odd couple took to the stage, Lady Gaga looked stunning in a floor-length silver gown while Bennett was the only man in the auditorium dressed in a jacket and tie.
Bennett and Lady Gaga thrilled the audience with a set of jazz standards from the likes of Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, Frank Sinatra, and even Edith Piaf. Incredibly, the 89-year-old Bennett kept pace with Lady Gaga as the pair worked their way through a 100-minute, so-song set-list. According to Voice Of America Bennett even found the energy to joke “[W]e’re selling our album around the world, please buy it. She really needs the money.”
Lady Gaga and Bennett have clearly formed a close attachment as they have performed together over the past couple of years. During the love ballads in their set, Gaga hugged and kissed Bennett as they sang. As you would expect from Lady Gaga, she stunned the crowd in a series of eye-popping outfits, somehow managing to change backstage while Bennett sang solos.
The crowd were thrilled when Gaga and Bennett performed Irving Berlin’s “Cheek To Cheek,” the title track from their 2014 duets album. The loudest applause of the night went to Lady Gaga when she sang a moving version of Edith Piaf’s signature song, “La Vie en Rose.”
[Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]