Mother Monster honored the singing legend during a special taping for his 90th birthday bash on Thursday night.
Taking the stage at New York City’s historic Radio City Music Hall, she thanked Bennett for helping her through tough times. Whether she’s “having a bad day” or “really, really sad, and I just feel like I don’t know who to call,” Gaga admits that Bennett is the one she looks to for solace.
“Because sometimes you don’t wanna call your mom and air out everything because then she’s nervous,” she continued. “Then you call your father, and he gets upset, and he wants to beat the guy up.”
“So I say: Who do I call when I’m in heartbreak? I call Tony. I really do. I really do. I call Tony.”
Bennett’s best advice for her: “Straight ahead, lady. Just go straight ahead. Because you’re a star, and the world loves you.”
She credits Bennett for giving her the confidence to stand back up after life knocked her down. “Tony taught me to truly believe in myself – the way that I do for others to believe in themselves,” she says, “[And to] put my money where my mouth is.”
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“We are both ambitious artists, hoping to work through long-distance and complicated schedules to continue the simple love we have always shared,” she captioned an Instagram photo depicting her and Kinney walking with their arms around each other. “Please root us on. We’re just like everybody else and we really love each other.”
In celebration of one of America’s most treasured musical icons, NBC will air the two-hour special Tony Bennett Celebrates 90: The Best Is Yet to Come on Tuesday, Dec. 20 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
•Reporting by JEFF NELSON