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Between 1952 and the present day, Tony Bennett recorded an astounding 63 albums for the Columbia, CBS, and Sony labels – all of which now fall under the umbrella of Sony Music. This extensive box set brings together six decades of music, including the 11 albums he recorded for other labels, making this the first true complete albums collection. The box also features Bennett’s non-album singles from the ‘50s and an array of rarities, outtakes and other delights – including his very first recording and an Army V-Disk of “St. James Infirmary Blues.” Also included is the never-before-released Live at the Sahara – an incredible document of Bennett’s Las Vegas debut in 1964. The show captures all the onstage intensity, impromptu humor and crowd interaction that was the artist in his mid-‘60s prime. This box set also features 3 DVDs, including the classic 1994 MTV Unplugged and the award-winning 2006 Rob Marshall-directed NBC special.
These albums define the essence of Bennett’s career, and this exquisite collection includes such historic highpoints as: Tony Bennett: The Complete Albums
1955: The famous Cloud 7 album that marked Bennett’s his transition from being primarily a single artist to a full-fledged artist capable of album-length statements. At the age of 30 and after years of pushing, he was finally allowed to make the 12” recording he desired; a consistently soft, late-night mood pervades this classic.
1957: The Beat of My Heart was another winner for Bennett, his third album, matching his voice with such percussion masters as Art Blakey, Chico Hamilton and Candido.
1959: In Person! Bennett’s aborted live debut recording resulted in this studio album that features him in the august company of Count Basie and his Orchestra, then at the top of their game.
1962: I Left My Heart in San Francisco – the album that included the Top 5 single that helped launch Bennett from the confines of being a jazz/cabaret balladeer to a pop stylist on a par with Frank Sinatra or Dean Martin.
1963: I Wanna Be Around... generated two Top 20 hits -- “The Good Life” and the title track – and firmly established Bennett’s as a mainstream star.
1968: Snowfall still stands as one of the rare Christmas albums that – tune by tune – rises above its novelty aspect and is as musically consistent as a five-star, non-seasonal recording.
1975: Tony Bennet + Bill Evans teamed him with legendary jazz pianist and arranger Bill Evans for a classic album released by Fantasy Records.
1986: Bennett’s return to Columbia after a fourteen-year hiatus yielded The Art of Excellence, a collection of old and newer standards that lived up to its title, and became a best-seller.
1992, 1993: Perfectly Frank and Steppin’ Out were Bennett’s sincere and worthy tributes to two of his stylistic mentors – Frank Sinatra and Fred Astaire (respectively); they both went gold and garnered back-to-back Grammy awards.
1994: MTV Unplugged was the album that introduced Bennett to an entirely new generation, which he won over without changing a single personal or musical aspect: still the same tuxedo, still the same standards from the Great American Songbook.
2001: On the heels of two more award-winning tributes – one to Billie Holiday and the other to Duke Ellington – Bennett released Playin’ With My Friends, a collection of duets with such pop, rock and R&B stars as Ray Charles, Billy Joel, Stevie Wonder, Diana Krall, Bonnie Raitt, and others.
2006: Duets: An American Classic managed to outshine Bennett’s previous album of one-to-one meetings, with a wider stylistic range and added starpower, including Elton John, Sting, the Dixie Chicks, Tim McGraw, George Michael, and others.
2011: Duets 2, the fantastic follow-up to his ’06 release, continues to prove his revered position among his global superstar peers.
All the original album artwork has been researched and restored, so that each album in this collection is packaged in an exact replica of its original LP jacket. Also included is a beautiful 250 booklet that features photos, original album notes, sketches and an essay by Tony himself. This exquisite set conveys the style, elegance and importance of America’s most beloved icon, while tracing the arc of his incredible career.