Johnny Mathis

I love what I’m doing. I try to find people who like what they’re doing, and I don’t expect anything other than friendship from my friends. I do have a tendency to spend a lot of time alone and I fantasize a lot about not only what I do, but what I’ve done. And I remember some of the most wonderful human beings I ever met in my life and I try to emulate them.

– Johnny Mathis, episode 208 of Talk Easy with Sam Fragoso

For 65 years, Johnny Mathis has been hailed as the voice of romance. Today, in the most unusual of Valentine’s Days, we call up the legendary singer to look back on his early days in San Francisco (8:13), performing on the Ed Sullivan Show (12:03), the close bond he shared with his parents (19:10), the influence of singers like Mabel Mercer (24:18), how he remains joyous at 85 (27:53), and, finally, the nature of loving and letting go (32:07).


Illustrations by: Krishna Shenoi.

Music by: Dylan Peck

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