From rags to riches! Tony Bennett has had a long and successful career as a jazz artist – but the “Because of You” singer started out with humble beginnings.The 19-time Grammy award winner (real name Anthony Dominick Benedetto) was born in Queens, New York in 1926 to a low-income family.
His father, Giovanni “John” Benedetto, was a grocer and his mother, Anna Maria Suraci, was a seamstress. The Great Depression hit the family hard as John’s health declined.
He died by the time Bennett was 10 years old.The New York native began singing from a young age and would practice while waiting tables in order to help his family financially. “I started when I was about 6.
I never met an Italian descent family in America that isn’t musical,” Bennett said in an interview with Jazz Professional in 1966.The “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” artist had his big break in 1949 when vaudeville singer Pearl Bailey invited him to open for her concert series in Greenwich Village.Read more on usmagazine.com