By Javier Herrero
Madrid, Mar 29 (EFE).- Michael Bublé says he is aware that there will be some people out there who balk his take on songs by the likes of Barry White and Bob Dylan on album Higher but encourages them to listen to what, for him, is the most special record of his life so far.
The Canadian crooner sat down for an interview with Efe in Madrid, where he went over a host of topics from his inspiration, his experience of the pandemic and the pride he has for his latest record, in which he pays tribute to some of his own personal heroes.
Question: How has the pandemic been with the family?
Answer: I think the experience of being at home was complicated, I knew many people who died. I felt absolutely devastated for the vulnerable people. My wife and I, obviously we have been through our own difficult times (their son Noah was successfully treated for liver cancer), I think we wanted to help as much as we could, I think many times we probably felt guilty about how lucky we were.
We prayed with the children so much (…) we had to make our children understand that this wasn’t normal, because of all the people out there we were able to go through this pandemic with very little worries, we had so much privilege.
I spent the whole time trying to advocate for other people. Especially later in the pandemic, things became very polarized, some people wanted the vaccination some people didn’t want the vaccination, we tried to just be good and kind and empathetic and not to be political
As a father, I spent every single day with my babies, I never missed anything, I was so blessed to have that time.
Q: Did it give you time to reflect on your career?
A: I think when I saw you last I came to talk about the record Love (2018) and the truth is I don’t think I was ready to be back, I think I was still heartbroken and I think I was still dealing with a lot of mental health issues that happen when your child is ill. I wanted to come back and I wanted to protect myself and I wanted to make a really beautiful record that was comfortable for me and I wanted to somehow put my toe back into the water – but I wasn’t ready.
Q: But you’re back now with your latest album Higher.
A: This time has given me time to heal, and I’ve had time to have great perspective and my heart was full and I was able to make the most special record of my life.
I was able to put together a group of the greatest musicians on the planet, and how wonderful for me to come back. And not just to come back, but to come back after 20 years, after all of these things, and I get to deliver the world a love letter.
I’m not some savior obviously, but the world needs love. I love these songs so much.
Q: You’ve done covers from a diverse list of artists on the record, what do they have in common?
A: When I was a kid, when I was 13 or 14, I used to look at Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin and Willy Nelson, and they were untouchable icons, they were heroes that were only on a poster or on a record cover, and now I’m one of them. Now, I live in that world. After 20 years, it is my privilege and it is my honor to continue the legacy of my heroes.
And one day I will get to see a young person come up to become the next generation, and I can’t wait to pass that baton.
More than working and getting to make music with Paul McCartney, Willie Nelson and Tony Bennett, having them give me their stamp of approval is the greatest compliment that I could ever be given.
For me, Willie Nelson is one of the greatest crooners of all time. EFE