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Issue Date: September 2013


Fall Arts & Entertainment Preview: Smooth Operator

Canadian crooner Michael Bublé serenades us with talk of his new album and tour stop at Quicken Loans Arena.
by Barry Goodrich

You could say that Michael Bublé has the world on a string. With To Be Loved, his fourth consecutive No. 1 album, a new baby on the way with wife Luisana and a highly anticipated concert tour, the 37-year-old Canadian crooner is understandably upbeat. "I'm a lucky guy," says Bublé from his home in Vancouver. "I felt like we made a very special record, and I literally couldn't wait to sing these songs on tour." Bublé, who brings his national tour to Quicken Loans Arena Sept. 18, talked with us about working with new producers, the pressures of success and singing with Reese Witherspoon.

Q. Your new album is produced by Bob Rock, who has worked with Metallica, Aerosmith and Bon Jovi. How much of a change was this for you?

A. This was an opportunity to show growth without alienating the people who bought 40 million of your records. I had worked with David Foster, who loves to be very slick. Bob Rock is all about the vibe, the feeling of something. We're kind of brothers that way. My influences have always been varied, and it was fun to wear a lot of hats on this. We rented a huge studio in Vancouver and called it the Pop Jazz Sweatshop. It's not a cheap way to make a record, but it's what music should be.

Q. You've won three Grammys, sold 45 million albums worldwide and only Adele's 21 sold more than your Christmas release in 2011. How do you deal with the expectations?

A. It's about quality not quantity. We haven't exactly pumped these [albums] out. We've taken our time to make the best records possible. I put pressure on myself, but having time off between records allows you to be introspective. This new show is a home run — people will know every song. We make it a knockout every round.

Q. How did you end up singing a duet with Reese Witherspoon on the Sinatra classic "Something Stupid"?

A. Actually, it was my manager's idea. He and I both loved Reese's portrayal of June Carter [in Walk the Line], but we didn't know if we could get her to do this. Shockingly, she went for it. I love it that she came at the song the way an actress would. She later said it was one of the top-five moments of her career, and that moved me. She was the cherry on top of this [album].


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