Tony Bennett grew up listening to Al Jolson, Eddie Cantor, Judy Garland, Bing Crosby, and jazz artists such as Louis Armstrong, Jack Teagarden, and Joe Venuti. An uncle was a tap dancer in vaudeville, giving him an early window into show business. His first big hit was "Because Of You", a ballad produced by Mitch Miller with a lush orchestral arrangement from Percy Faith. It started out gaining popularity on jukeboxes, then reached #1 on the pop charts in 1951 and stayed there for 10 weeks, selling over a million copies. This was followed to the top later that year by a similarly-styled rendition of Hank Williams' "Cold, Cold Heart", which helped introduce Williams and country music in general to a wider, more national audience. We continue our survey throughout the â??50s where Tony gained more chart success and then moved into a more jazzier style culminating in 1958 with sessions with the great Count Basie.
Disc 11. Boulevard Of Broken Dreams
Disc 21. Silly Dreamer
Disc 31. Until Yesterday (Non E La Pioggia)
Disc 41. Lost In The Stars