Neil Sedaka is 84 years old and he still looks great

Married to the love of his life for almost 61 years, Neil Sedaka doesn’t have a lot of experience to say that “Breaking Up is Hard to Do.”

Recently celebrating his 84th birthday, the handsome “down doobie do down down” singer who melted hearts with his vocals, is bursting with love for his grandchildren and gushes that he was “born married to his wife.”

How could anyone not love Neil Sedaka? He’s given us so much – the exceptional singer has delighted us with his voice and presence for many years.

A natural talent, Neil Sedaka – who’s written and recorded some of the catchiest tunes in pop history – said that when he was a child, he was embarrassed to sing in front of an audience.

“I knew I had a remarkable voice, but I was embarrassed because it was so high,” Sedaka shared. “But when I sang at my bar mitzvah the rabbi was in tears.”

When he was only 13, the classically trained pianist, who attended a Saturday scholarship program at Julliard’s Preparatory for Children, formed a partnership with 16-year-old Howard Greenfield, and together they composed songs for Sedaka’s school band the Linc-Tones, a band that would later become the Tokens.

Working from New York’s historic Brill Building, the duo went on to write chart-topping hits like Sedaka’s “Breaking up is Hard to do,” Captain & Tenille’s “Love will keep us Together” and Connie Francis’ “Stupid Cupid.”

“We had a cubicle with a piano and a bench but no window. You only got a room with a window after you’d had a hit song,” Sedaka said, adding the pair were earning $50 a week. “Every day from 9am to 5pm we’d write and then we’d play what we’d written to people from record labels. It was hard but it was wonderful training.”

He was the first at the building who recorded his own songs, and also the first to reach the Top 10 with his hit song “Oh! Carol” (1959), which was inspired by his high school girlfriend Carole King.

Greenfield and Sedaka collaborated until the mid 70s, and Greenfield, who was openly gay, died from complications from AIDS in 1986.

As for Sedaka, at 19 he left The Tokens before the band hit its pinnacle of fame in 1961 with “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” and “Tonight I Fell in Love.”

Performing solo, his first three releases failed to make the charts, but one song did earn him a spot on American Bandstand with Dick Clark, and soon after he landed a recording contract.

His first hit single was “The Diary”–a song inspired by Connie Francis’ diary because Sedaka really wanted “to look into that little book”–that peaked at 14 in the Billboard Top 100 in 1958. In 1960, Sedaka released “Calendar Girl,” his sixth hit in two years, and his popularity was reaching massive heights.

In 1962, he married Leba Strassberg, whom he met while performing at the now abandoned Esther Manor resort in the Catskills Mountains, NY.

The resort was co-owned by Leba’s mother, Esther, a businesswoman who wasn’t fond of her daughter being courted by a lowly musician.

Despite Esther’s disapproval, the couple stayed together, all the while dealing with another meddling mom, Eleanor Sedaka.

Earlier confessing that she rode rollercoasters when she was pregnant with him, hoping to miscarry, Eleanor was also pushing her son into pursuing a career as a classical pianist, and not as a pop star.

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