Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett 'cheek-to-cheek' at Montreux jazz fest

Mon Jul 6, 2015 9:28pm EDT
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By Stephanie Nebehay

MONTREUX, Switzerland (Reuters) - Pop star Lady Gaga and crooner Tony Bennett brought a mix of Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, Frank Sinatra and even Edith Piaf to a sell-out crowd spanning generations at the Montreux Jazz Festival on Monday night.

Legendary producer Quincy Jones introduced the odd American couple, praising Gaga as a singer who had "blown his mind." He also recalled working on the musical arrangement for Bennett's 1966 hit "Girl Talk."

"This would be Claude's definite dream," Jones said, referring to Claude Nobs, the late founder of one of Europe's most prestigious summer music festivals, now in its 49th edition.

Bennett, the only person in the famed Stravinski Auditorium wearing a jacket and tie, and the blond Gaga, appearing first in a long shiny silver dress with plunging neckline, opened with "Anything Goes," a Cole Porter tune of the 1930s.

The pair of New Yorkers then sang "Cheek to Cheek" by Irving Berlin, the title track from their 2014 album of jazz standards for which they won a Grammy Award in February.

Bennett, just weeks shy of his 89th birthday, and Gaga, already a six-time Grammy winner at age 29, delivered 30 songs during their 100-minute non-stop show, backed by nine musicians.

"We're selling our album around the world, please buy it. She really needs the money," Bennett quipped.

Gaga, born Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, is better known for her hits "Paparazzi" and "Poker Face."   Continued...

Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga perform together at the 49th Montreux Jazz Festival in Montreux, Switzerland, July 6, 2015, in this handout courtesy of the Montreux Jazz Festival. REUTERS/FFJM/Marc Ducrest/Handout via Reuters