Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga recently waltzed through The Tonight Show, where they performed a swinging set of standards, “Cheek to Cheek” and “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing),” off their recent duets album, Cheek to Cheek.
After Gaga, who looked both glitzy and glittery, opened “Cheek to Cheek” like a love-lorn ballad, she and Bennett, who remained dapper and stoic during the performance, kicked up the Irving Berlin classic, trading lines before belting the last few verses together in harmony. “It Don’t Mean a Thing” found the two maintaining that pace and closing with a delightful bout of scatting.
Gaga also stuck around for an exclusive performance of Cole Porter’s “Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye.” Introducing the lovelorn number as “a bit of a sadder song for the holidays,” Gaga went on to deliver a fittingly chilling and emotional rendition, though not without adding just a hint of needed melodrama.
Bennett and Gaga released Cheek to Cheek in September and are now set for a handful of live dates this winter, including a New Year’s Eve show at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas; they have a string of shows scheduled for next spring as well in North America and Europe. Cheek to Cheek debuted at Number One on Billboard‘s Top 200 album chart, and recently earned a Grammy nomination for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album.
“It’s all the great songs of George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, all the greatest composers,” Bennett told Rolling Stone before the album’s release. “No other country has ever given the rest of the world so many magnificent songs, and they’re going to live forever.”