This isn’t the first time Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett have come together to revive the classic sound of jazz music. The duo released their album, Cheek to Cheek, in 2014 and have been inseparable ever since. Seven years later, Love for Sale focuses on the iconic music of Cole Porter. It serves as the perfect follow-up to the collaborators’ first album and reminds listeners of the true beauty of jazz jazz.
Unfortunately, this album marks the end of Bennett’s decades-long career after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease in 2017. The jazz singer let Gaga take charge throughout the recording process, encouraging her to sing solo on some of the tracks. In an interview with Apple Music, Gaga said, “Tony gave me the inspiration and permission to hold court in the studio again. He reminded me that I’m the artist.”
Love for Sale is a reminder of the close bond Gaga and Bennett share and you can feel it in every song as they laugh and take moments to speak to one another. Compared to the dark and serious nature of Cheek to Cheek, the latest album is vibrant and whimsical.
The album’s opener “It’s De-Lovely” is a sweet tune reflective of the duo’s new vibrant sound. The opening trumpets that lead into a decrescendo of just piano and Gaga’s smooth vocals reflect the happiness evident in her voice as Bennett joins her for the chorus. They sing about the beauty of finding true love and serenity, which could allude to the two’s current friendship.
“Love for Sale,” one of the lead singles off the album, describes the epitome of young love. The track emphasizes the ecstasy of falling in love quickly and warns the listener of the consequences that come with it. While it’s not as flashy and impactful as any Gaga cover, it still puts a smile on your face and allows you to sway back and forth, wishing for love to come your way.
In contrast, “Do I Love You” is a flawless love song that acts as Lady Gaga’s solo. It almost feels like she’s only singing to you, as the singer croons of not being able to live without the love of her life and how much she appreciates them. The orchestra playing in the background also makes this an essential standout on the tracklist.
The upbeat tempo of “I Get A Kick Out Of You” is about finding solace and attraction in the person you love and not caring what others think when you’re with them. You might want to snap your fingers to this beat as the pair say “I get no kick from champagne / Mere alcohol doesn’t thrill me at all / So tell me, why should it be true? Mm, yeah / I get a kick out of you.” The overall sound of the track is infectious and Gaga and Bennett’s vocals compliment one another and demonstrate the powerful strength of their voices.
“You’re The Top” ends the album on a high note. Its returning sound of trumpets and percussion is a reminder of the spunk Gaga and Bennett are known for. For fans who have followed the duo since their first collaboration together, this is the song for you.
Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett proved that jazz music can be revived and radiate a lighter and glowier sound. Love for Sale has its moments where some songs lack the luster of Cheek to Cheek but overall reminds jazz listeners of its vibrancy and instrumentation. This doesn’t take away from the value of the album; there are just songs that get repetitive or go on too long. The growth of the duo is evident throughout every track, but it may not be as noteworthy as its predecessor.