Happy Birthday, Tony Bennett!
The legendary singer celebrates his 90th birthday Wednesday. Born Anthony Dominick Benedetto on Aug. 3, 1926, in Astoria, Queens, the singer counts 19 Grammy awards, including a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.
To celebrate in part, NBC recently announced that it will host a special in honor of the musician. "Tony Bennett Celebrates 90: The Best is Yet to Come" is set run Dec. 20, just before the holidays.
The two-hour special will include appearances from Bennett’s famous friends, although the full list of performers has yet to be announced. However, viewers can count on appearances from Stevie Wonder, Billy Joel, Elton John, Lady Gaga, Aretha Franklin and, of course, Bennett himself, who will perform some of his greatest hits.
In honor of the living legend’s birthday, here are some of Tony Bennett’s most iconic quotes to get you through Hump Day. From the inspirational to the tongue-in-cheek, read on for 10 of Bennett’s top lines. Although we’re sure the best is yet to come …
On Getting Older:
1. “I have an awful lot to learn. My dream is to get better and better as I get older.”
2. “I am very much inspired by the great masters of entertainment: Bob Hope, George Burns, Jimmy Durante – who never thought about retiring. When people ask me if I plan to retire, I say, “Retire to what? I am doing what I love best right now!”
3. “I want to try to prove that at 100, I could sing as well as I was singing when I was 45 or 43.”
4. “If you are creative you get busier as you get older.”
On Work and Being Creative:
5. “I think one of the reasons I'm popular again is because I'm wearing a tie. You have to be different.”
6. “When the uncreative tell the creative what to do, it stops being art.”
7. "I have a simple life. I mean, you just give me a drum roll, they announce my name, and I come out and sing. In my job I have a contract that says I'm a singer. So I sing."
8. “I’m not the type of person who likes to look backwards. I’ve always felt compelled to move forward and I’ve never been one to dwell in the past. All the people I’ve met, all the places I’ve been, and all the things that I’ve done have simply been part of who I am.”
On the Greats:
9. “No one will ever sound as good as Judy Garland as far as I am concerned.”
10. “The bottom line of any country is: What did we contribute to the world? We contributed Louis Armstrong.”