Tony Bennett: “I Count My Blessings”
The ETA Gala was the perfect venue for Betty to talk music and art with the two singing sensations, Tony Bennett and Natalie Cole.
BY BROOKE SAGER
The Arts Gala. ETA is a program dedicated to strengthening arts education in public schools. The father-daughter founders have risen over a million dollars for the cause.
Despite the rain, the red carpet was buzzing with excitement. Tony and Susan arrived early, waltzing into the candlelit Cipriani arm-in-arm.
Betty wanted to know Tony’s secret—to being loved by all ages and generations, that is.
“I count my blessings, and I think it’s wonderful I’m able to communicate with everyone,” Tony tells BettyConfidential. “It makes me feel good, when I can make everyone else feel good with my music.”
At 84-years-young, the singing legend doesn’t look like he’s slowing down anytime soon. When asked who he looks up to musically, there was little hesitation. “My favorite singer is Billie Holiday. And then there’s Louis Armstrong, Nat King Cole, and of course, Frank Sinatra. That’s the kind of music I love.”
On top of fifteen Grammys, Tony is also quite an established painter. “When I’m painting I think of music, and when I’m making music I think of painting. I love them both, and keep trying to get better at everything.”
Natalie Cole made a grand splash with her entrance to the star-studded event. She lit up the room, clad in gorgeous, gold-threaded pants. Her legs seemed to go on for miles—especially when standing next to 4’7” party attendee, Dr. Ruth.
Ms. Cole has nine Grammys under her belt and we wanted to know…is she going for more? “You know, I don’t really think about it. I just like making good music. That’s what I’m known for. But you never know, there may be another waiting in the wing somewhere!”
With performances from both Natalie and Tony, the gala was a truly magical evening. “I actually have a little surprise for Tony,” Natalie confessed. “There’s a song he’s probably not expecting me to sing, but he really turned me onto it.” The octogenarian Tony certainly turns us on!
Other stars that came to support the cause included Joe Laurita, Tony Serico, Nancy Sinatra, Alec Baldwin and James Gandolfini.