Oh, Tony Bennett. We see what you’re doing here: releasing your duets to the gentle wilds of the music blogs one by one, each a mini-event. Gaga showed off her Broadway chops (which, let’s be absolutely clear: exist, have existed and will exist for a while longer unless she decides to sing only in death-metal growls or back-of-the-throat squeals for hours a day). Amy Winehouse had her duet, the proceeds from which will presumably go to Mitch Winehouse’s foundation in her honor when/if it finally exists. Mariah Carey got a preview.
And now here’s Carrie, croon and vibrato in tow, on “It Had To Be You.” There’s nary a country styling to her performance, and she’s in good if mannered voice. It’s almost startling. Several listens past, we’re still split on whether Carrie’s comfortable with this or whether she’d rather drop the jazz act and start keying up her voice and her ex’s car. But then again, she’s singing at Bennett’s birthday benefit, so maybe that’s your answer.