Best Quotes from Johnny Mathis

People are stubborn about what they perceive to be the right thing or the wrong thing, and it takes a long time to filter this human condition. There’s a waiting period until people catch up. But if you have patience – which it takes when someone thinks differently from you – everybody always catches up. That patience is a wonderful virtue.

Johnny Mathis

Every performer has a little gem, a little pearl they have done that nobody pays much attention to. And then one day, somebody does recognize it, which is so gratifying.

Johnny Mathis

Most of our physical education teachers were just teachers, and they had to do the extra stuff on their own. I remember very vividly that they would hold a cane pole between two of the students down low, and we would all jump over it. And they would raise it and raise it and raise it.

Johnny Mathis

I’ve never been married, and I have no regrets about not starting my own family. I come from a large one, so there are so many people around all the time. I’ve been very happy, but I’ve never gotten married. That’s about the size of it. I would have been a good father because I’ve been a father to my brothers’ and sisters’ children.

Johnny Mathis

The one who really captured me and became my absolute favorite was Nat King Cole. He was a genius at what he did. Most people don’t realize what a great pianist he was. After listening to him for years, I finally met him, and he was the nicest human being.

Johnny Mathis

Each person’s voice is very different, so you need to find what works for you. Make sure you keep to your routine.

Johnny Mathis

Homosexuality is a way of life that I’ve grown accustomed to.

Johnny Mathis

I decided right away that whomever was going to advise me had to be fundamentally interested in music. This protected me from the skullduggery common to the music industry then and that still exists today. Of course, using this method meant that some things we didn’t know and just had to learn how to do it together.

Johnny Mathis

My aspirations were never anything other than I really, really admired certain singers over the years, and I just wanted to do the best I could. And that has been kind of like the way I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to have a career, have some success, and yet continue to learn my craft.

Johnny Mathis

There are not so many songs written about love today like there were in the past. It’s all changed, but that’s why my songs still last as big favorites today.

Johnny Mathis

I’m still going strong. I have been very blessed and still am. I love singing. Obviously, at my age, I don’t tour with as many dates throughout the year as I did in the past. But I do this to honor my father who was also a singer. I still miss him and his encouragement.

Johnny Mathis

I used to stay up all night, roam around, drink, and carry on like everybody else. That all changed when I got older, started to exercise and play golf. I knew by the time the day was over I would not feel like exercising, so I made it a point to exercise early.

Johnny Mathis

I’ve paid the price over the years, though: a lot of injuries and surgeries related to my sports career; my hips and knees took a lot of wear and tear.

Johnny Mathis

I’ve had several unavoidable problems because of my athletic career.

Johnny Mathis

I had stage fright for years and years, and I could hear it in my singing. But since I’ve done it so often for so many years, you’d think that I’d relax a little bit, and I think that I have.

Johnny Mathis

I’ve found that if I limit my talking, just everyday talking, a couple of days before I have to sing, my voice is stronger. That really is about the only precaution that I take: I try to rest it as much as possible and keep the nutritional value of my food up.

Johnny Mathis

There are situations when, in your singing, in your interpretation of songs, for instance, when you want a straight tone. And I have to work really hard at getting a straight tone… That’s sort of like if you have curly hair, you have curly hair.

Johnny Mathis

But I am very grateful for my success, and with success, of course, comes a whole lot of celebrity.

Johnny Mathis

Even though there’s no forum for me on the radio for the kind of music I sing anymore, I am still excited about having a career where I can sing the best music in the world, and people will come and hear me because of the hit records I’ve had in the past.

Johnny Mathis

I also met, early on Ella Fitzgerald. Her songbooks are some of the most amazing bodies of work.

Johnny Mathis

I really, really enjoy music and that’s why I do what I do.

Johnny Mathis

I think there are a lot of people who really want to be famous, they really do. I don’t. It sort of gets in the way of the everyday things that I do.

Johnny Mathis

I’m just one of the lucky people. I have no other reason for my longevity.

Johnny Mathis

In other words, the celebrity gets out of hand, and if you’re not careful, you will forget what you are about – and that is you are about making music that people want to hear.

Johnny Mathis

It’s just that some people are lucky and people still seem to enjoy the music.

Johnny Mathis

It’s very much like opera singers. They do the same thing. The first thing in the morning and the last thing at night, the thing they think about is their voice and how to take care of it.

Johnny Mathis

My favorite singer to this day is Nat King Cole. I’ve tried to emulate his phrasing. It is so absolutely beautiful to listen to his lovely voice.

Johnny Mathis

Sometimes being famous gets in the way of doing what you want to do.

Johnny Mathis

When I do an album I try to find a producer that’s excited about something that they want me to sing, and I check with the record company to find out what they think they can sell – which is their No. 1 priority.

Johnny Mathis

When I was 12 and started to take singing lessons from a woman, she told me that I would probably spend the rest of my life taking care of my voice.

Johnny Mathis

When you do interviews, you have to talk about yourself – and I like to find out about other people. I am so familiar with everything that I do. I’ve said it over and over again. I think it is boring.

Johnny Mathis

I cannot tell you how lucky I am: the songs that I sing, I like!

Johnny Mathis

My mom loved my Christmas music, so I did an awful lot of it!

Johnny Mathis

It’s the most personal thing that I do is sing. Because I can’t tell a lie. I want them to know exactly what I’m feeling.

Johnny Mathis

The world changes. The world is completely different now from when I was growing up. Back then, you didn’t say things like they say now, out loud, about race and things. But that’s just progress. When are we going to find out that we’re all the same – we’re all absolutely, without a doubt, the same?

Johnny Mathis

I’ve been very happy to see some of the success that I’ve had along the way in opening the eyes of people, especially people who listen to music.

Johnny Mathis

I’m always thinking about songs and how I can sing a song that would resonate with my voice, my persona. I want it to be a pleasant experience that’s not just about hearing my voice. I remember some singers whose voices were so pretty, it didn’t matter what they sang – you loved it.

Johnny Mathis

I have no memories of my childhood in Texas. When I was about four, we moved to San Francisco. I was in the middle of seven brothers and sisters: three girls and four boys. Most of my older brothers and sisters got the blame for everything, and the little ones had a free ride. We loved each other but fought like cats and dogs.

Johnny Mathis

I think it’s important to cultivate as many people as you can to see which ones you jive with. And it makes you happy. If one dies, you have another one. So living is a process that you have to do by yourself, and if you can learn a few little goodies along the way that might make it easier for you, so much the better.

Johnny Mathis

I’ve found that the more friends I have, the luckier I am.

Johnny Mathis

At this stage, most of the awards I get are concerned with my longevity. Even I’m amazed at myself because there have been new generations since I’ve been born and new music that they create, so it’s amazing to still be on the radar.

Johnny Mathis

First, I try to take everything away that doesn’t matter to singing. It sounds simplistic, but it works. There is absolute focus on singing: producing sounds and emotions that I have always enjoyed. This is key.

Johnny Mathis

When I was 13, I used to go to a jazz club. The owner of the club became my first business manager. She was very gutsy and had a lot of friends, one of whom happened to be the head of jazz at Columbia at the time. That’s how it all began.

Johnny Mathis

There was a time when I was in the South, singing, and someone came to me before the show and said, ‘There’s been a threat on your life. Someone had phoned in and said they were going to shoot you if you go on stage.’ I was singing ‘Chances Are,’ and I kept moving so they wouldn’t have a shot at me.

Johnny Mathis

I go to the gym rather early with a workout pal. I get there at 7, or a little before, and do weights and a little cardio for an hour, five days a week.

Johnny Mathis

The thing that means most to me is the joy that my mom and my dad got because of my career… They raised seven children on domestic wages, in a city like San Francisco, and did nothing but work, work, work.

Johnny Mathis

I don’t think about the future. It sort of will take care of itself; there’s not really much that I can do other than fundamental things like taking care of my voice, keeping to my exercise routine, and getting some rest.

Johnny Mathis

As a child, all I knew was that people kept asking me to sing, and because I liked to please, I would sing. It wasn’t until my dad told me that my singing made him happy that I began to think my voice might be good.

Johnny Mathis

It doesn’t mean a thing when others tell you you’re good. You have to feel it yourself.

Johnny Mathis

For me, hearing my voice is sometimes a little nauseating, especially at Christmas.

Johnny Mathis

When I was very young, it was all, ‘Here’s little Johnny,’ and I got stuck with it, but I prefer John. There comes a time in a man’s life when he shouldn’t have a name ending in ‘y’.

Johnny Mathis

My music has always been enough.

Johnny Mathis