Johnny Mathis has spent 60 years singing and recording the music he loves. He’s enjoyed unprecedented worldwide success and his hits have included “Chances Are,” “Wonderful Wonderful,” “Misty,” and “It’s Not For Me to Say.” He’s also been a pioneer at the same time – in ways you might not even realize. For instance, he was the first artist ever to release a Greatest Hits album.
He’s getting ready to celebrate his 80th birthday – and to commemorate, Columbia/Legacy Recordings has put together Johnny Mathis – the Singles, a 4-CD box set that brings together 87 non-LP tracks for the first time in one collection. We talk to the legendary vocalist about making an early career choice between sports and music, befriending basketball legend Bill Russell, working with Mitch Miller, and the stories behind some of his most-beloved songs.