Michael Bublé was full on Tuesday, in couple of different ways.
For starters, he was full of food.
I dont know how people arent all 400 pounds here, the three-time Grammy Award-winning Canadian crooner said during a call before a show in New Orleans. Everything is fried with cream, and its delicious.
But more so, he was full of equal doses of confidence and charm as youll see from our interview with him in advance of his To Be Loved tours stop at Charlottes Time Warner Cable Arena Saturday night.
Q. What are the key differences between the tour you brought here in 2010 and this new one?
A I learned a lot on the last tour, and I feel like I probably leaned a little hard on comedy. I had to be reminded that people come to hear the music. What I do is still based in humor ... but the first thing I did when I put together this show was I added six or seven songs to the list.
Im not an artist that has to save his one hit song or two hit songs for last. Ive got enough great songs in my repertoire that I come out of the corner, and Im swinging. Im trying to throw knockout punches. The biggest hit Ive ever had I come out with second.
I spent about $1.5 million on my (last tour), and this production is over $5.5 million. My band has gone from 12 pieces to 19. So in every way, Ive taken it to that next level. Im sure you have interviews with a ton of people coming through town that say the same things, but this is the best that youll see in the world.
Q. Another thing thats different this time is youre a new dad. (Son Noah was born Aug. 27.) Is your family on tour with you?
A They were, but now my wife (Argentinian actress Luisana Lopilato) has gone to make a movie, so shes in Buenos Aires, and hes with her. But I go to bed with him on Skype. Then we both get up for the midnight feedings and hang out on Skype for a while. Its nice. It makes me feel connected to them.
Q. Who are you listening to these days?
A I listen to everybody. Really, it could be Kanye, it could be Pearl Jam. I love the Beatles, Dylan. I like Blake Sheltons last record a lot. ... And of course jazz and swing move me in a big way. I have a couple drinks on the bus and the second they throw some Harry Connick Jr. on, Im bouncing.
Q. Does it bother you that so many artists in the Top 40 cant actually sing?
A No, Ive got bigger fish to fry. I mean, a lot of (todays pop) is groove-driven. Melodies dont really matter as much, as long as its a strong groove. People love to move, people love to feel a groove, but will it stand the test of time is another question. I dont know. Great songs live forever. I think I prove that every night when I sing songs that were written in the early 1900s and Ive got 12-year-old kids in the audience singing every word to them. That tells you something about (the power of) a great melody with great lyrics.
Q. Are you surprised that because youve had so much success in your genre that there havent been more guys trying to do what you do?
A Its funny, because Ill read a review of one of my CDs and theyll say, This is easy. What a formula. Put out a bunch of standards and sell a million records. But if everybody could do it, everybody would be doing it. Not to disparage people that go on (American) Idol everyone gets there a different way but my way was starting in bars and clubs at 16 years old and working my way (up), playing every place I could play until I earned the right to step inside a record company. ... Now its been more than half my life that Ive stood on stage and learned to be an entertainer and sang these songs. Its not something thats easy. Malcolm Gladwell ... he was right when he said, 10,000 hours thats what it takes for someone to truly learn their craft.
Q. Going back to your shows, even though you like to joke around and be informal with the crowd, your style remains formal: Youre always in that suit. Why is that important to you to get dressed up?
A People spend good money. People come and they dress nice. My brand is hopefully a class brand. Ive been to so many shows with guys who show up disheveled, and its obvious they tried hard to look that bad. To me, it reeks of desperation to try to look like you didnt care. Because its obvious you do. Everybody does. And its not just about what I wear, its the whole presentation. Im playing places where there was a hockey game the night before. I want this place to be transformed, and for everything to be dressed up to where it looks like youre walking into a beautiful place, about to have a beautiful night, and not some cold, stinky hockey arena.
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