Vic Damone Dies: Legendary Singer Dead At Age 89

The late singer, known for his post-war love songs, had 'the best pipes in the business,' according to Frank Sinatra.

Vic Damone Dead At 89
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The late singer, known for his post-war love songs, had 'the best pipes in the business,' according to Frank Sinatra.

Legendary singer Vic Damone has died at age 89. The famed crooner, known for his hits “Again,” “You’re Breaking My Heart,” and the title song from An Affair to Remember passed away in from complications of a respiratory illness at age 89, according to the Los Angeles Times. Damone died February 11 at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, Florida. During his hospitalization, Vic Damone received a phone call from longtime friend Donald Trump, according to Fox News.

Vic Damone came of age alongside Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Dean Martin, and Perry Como, fellow crooners who all came to fame after World War II. Vic was close friends with Perry Como (he even named her only son after him), and Sinatra once quipped that Vic had “the best pipes in the business” with his mellow baritone. Vic Damone released more than 2,500 records in a career that spanned seven decades.

In addition to his prolific music career, Vic Damone made many appearances in movies, MGM musicals, and television shows, including The Judy Garland Show, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Danny Thomas Hour, and his own self-titled variety show, The Vic Damone Show. Damone also appeared as a panelist on Hollywood Squares. Vic’s last acting credit was in 1978 on the Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries, according to IMDb.

Vic Damone retired from music after suffering a stroke in 2002. The music legend gave his fans one final performance at a show in Palm Beach in 2011.

After Vic Damone’s death was announced, fans took to social media to remember the music legend.

Singer James Torme, the son of Damone’s longtime friend, jazz singer Mel Torme, took to Twitter to write, “I cry like a baby every time one of my idols leaves us, & today’s no exception. An incredible singer, Vito Rocco Farinola (Vic Damone) was also a super gracious, lovely man, and a good friend of my dad’s. I mention him whenever I sing [‘On the Street Where You Live.’] #Oneofakind.”

Vic Damone was married five times, most notably to first wife Pier Angeli, who famously left James Dean to be with Damone. Vic was also married to actress Diahann Carroll and fashion designer Rena Rowan, his last wife who preceded him in death in 2016. Vic Damone was also a father to four children from two of his marriages.

Decades after his prolific career took off, Vic Damone was the musical inspiration for modern-day crooner Michael Buble, whom he once called talented but “cocky.” According to the New York Daily News, Vic took issue with Buble’s habit of smoking and drinking “straight alcohol” after a show, telling him that what he was doing was “not going to do any good for his vocal cords.” Buble reportedly told the legend he knew what he was doing. Buble later told the Daily News he felt bad about the exchange, saying, “Vic’s voice was incredible, like butter. But I don’t know if he was an entertainer like I am. He was more about the music.”