Tony Bennett has retired from performing at the age of 95 and is canceling the remainder of his fall tour dates this year, his son and manager has announced.
The crooner is saying goodbye to a 70-year career. Last year, he revealed that he has struggled with Alzheimer’s disease since 2016. Alzheimer’s is a degenerative form of age-related dementia characterized by progressive memory loss.
Bennett performed two sold-out shows with Lady Gaga at New York’s Radio City Music Hall last week, dubbed “One Last Time: An Evening With Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga.” This was to be held in anticipation of the pair’s second duets album, Love for Sale due for release October 1.
Watch the music video for Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga’s “I Get A Kick Out Of You” below:
Tony’s son and manager for over 40 years, Danny, 66, told Variety: “There won’t be any additional concerts. This was a hard decision for us to make, as he is a capable performer. This is, however, doctors’ orders. His continued health is the most important part of this, and when we heard the doctors — when Tony’s wife, Susan heard them — she said, ‘Absolutely not.’ He’ll be doing other things, but not those upcoming shows. It’s not the singing aspect but, rather, the traveling. Look, he gets tired. The decision is being made that doing concerts now is just too much for him. We don’t want him to fall on stage, for instance — something as simple as that.”
Danny emphasized that they aren’t concerned with his performing capabilities adding, “We’re not worried about him being able to sing. We are worried, from a physical standpoint… about human nature. Tony’s 95.”
Bennett has been a star since the ’50s, with hit songs including “I Left My Heart In San Francisco” and “The Shadow Of Your Smile.” He’s won 18 Grammys and sold more than 50 million records. Some of his biggest successes have come in the last decade, including the chart-topping duets album with Lady Gaga, Cheek To Cheek, which won a Grammy in 2015.
Danny said his father still has “all this stored up inside of him. He doesn’t use a Teleprompter. He never misses a line. He hits that stage, and goes. Tony may not remember every part of doing that show. But, when he stepped to the side of the stage, the first thing he told me was: ‘I love being a singer.’”