- Tony Bennett died on July 21 at age 96 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.
- The singer/songwriter won 20 Grammy Awards and two Primetime Emmy Awards.
- Celebrities like Elton John and Kelsea Ballerini remembered the icon on social media after his passing
Another Hollywood icon has passed away. Legendary singer Tony Bennett, best known for singing “I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” sadly died on Friday, July 21 at his home in New York City after a battle with Alzheimer’s disease. The Grammy-winning artist was 96, just two weeks short of his birthday.
Tony was known for being a huge force in the music industry and collaborating with such major talents as Lady Gaga. After news of his death spread, some of the biggest stars in Hollywood spoke out to mourn Tony. They shared statements on social media remembering the “Stranger In Paradise” singer and acknowledged the legacy he’s left behind.
Elton John took to his Instagram to share a touching photo of him and Tony hanging out at a Hollywood soiree. “So sad to hear of Tony’s passing,” the “Tiny Dancer” singer captioned the tribute.”Without doubt the classiest singer, man, and performer you will ever see. He’s irreplaceable. I loved and adored him. Condolences to Susan, [his son] Danny and the family.”
Country music starlet Kelsea Ballerini shared Tony’s version of “The Way You Look Tonight” via her Instagram Story. “My dad played Tony Bennett around the house my whole childhood,” she added. “His music has always made me feel at home and safe. What a gift he brought to the world and what a classic, beautiful legacy he leaves forever.”
Billy Joel called Tony called “one of the most important interpreters of American popular song” in a statement to Rolling Stone. “He championed songwriters who might otherwise have remained unknown to many millions of music fans. … He was a joy to work with. His energy and enthusiasm for the material he was performing was infectious. He was also one of the nicest human beings I’ve ever known,” he added.
Nancy Pelosi was a longtime friend and huge fan of Tony. When she ushered in the 116th Congress in 2019, Tony was one of the first people on hand she shouted out in the gallery, as seen here. “My comrade, an Italian American… I want to acknowledge Tony Bennett, who is here with us today. Thank you, Tony,” she said. “He helped free the concentration camps during the time of World War II. He marched with Martin Luther King. He is a true American patriot”
Following the news of Tony’s passing, Nancy took to her Twitter and to her website to share a loving tribute. “Tony Bennett was a national treasure: an extraordinarily gifted singer, a great humanitarian and a true American patriot. Personally, Tony was my dear friend, with whom it was my privilege to share many special moments,” she wrote in part. Read the full statement, here.
The great Tony Bennett has passed away at the age of 96. He was the last of his kind, a master of the American songbook. He may have left his Heart in San Francisco, but he won all of our hearts, from Sinatra to Lady Gaga. Be at peace, and sing to us now from the stars, Tony.
— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) July 21, 2023
George Takei reacted to Tony’s death on Twitter. “The great Tony Bennett has passed away at the age of 96. He was the last of his kind, a master of the American songbook. He may have left his Heart in San Francisco, but he won all of our hearts, from Sinatra to Lady Gaga. Be at peace, and sing to us now from the stars, Tony,” George said.
Stevie Van Zandt
RIP Tony Bennett. The best of the best. The last of the legends. A man whose heart was as big as his voice. The world’s foremost practitioner of the “Art Of Excellence.”Deepest love and condolences to my friend Danny and the family.
— 🕉🇺🇦🟦Stevie Van Zandt☮️💙 (@StevieVanZandt) July 21, 2023
Stevie Van Zandt, guitarist for Bruce Springsteen’s E Street band, took to his Twitter to pay tribute. “RIP Tony Bennett. The best of the best,” he wrote. “The last of the legends. A man whose heart was as big as his voice. The world’s foremost practitioner of the ‘Art Of Excellence.’ Deepest love and condolences to my friend Danny and the family.”
Broadway star and Frozen’s Olaf, Josh Gad, took to Twitter as the news broke on Friday, writing, “This one shouldn’t sting so much because any of us would take 96 years, but man is it hard to imagine a world without the great Tony Bennett. 💔.”