Call Me Irresponsible

I’ll admit it: I love old music. Popular music bores me. While I can tolerate rap, I could never listen to it on a daily basis; rock and punk music seem too rough and grungy to me, and while I appreciate indie music, I am not nearly motivated enough to search for new, underground music like a true fan. Instead, I stick to the classics. While the boy in the room directly above me blasts “Get Buck In Here,” I can usually be found listening to classical music or turn-of-the-century ragtime as I complete my homework. Somehow, I find Bach far more work inducing than Busta Rhymes. To me, old-fashioned music is simply prettier and more pleasing to the ear than current music trends. While classical music and Scott Joplin ragtime are a sure bet for soothing homework music or even naptime music, I sometimes tire of its one-dimensional nature. In the spirit of Joplin, I’ll browse my iTunes library for later Jazz music—the traditional jazz that we are all familiar with. Classic songs by Duke Ellington, Miles Davis and Louis Armstrong fill my dorm room, providing a lovely ambiance for studying, sleeping or just playing around with friends. I frequently listen to Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole, two of my favorite singers. Their distinct, jazzy voices of the past are timeless, with such gems as “Unforgettable,” “Come Fly With Me” and “Call Me Irresponsible,” established as true standards in American music. With the original artists’ voices so memorable and idolized in the music culture, it seems as though no contemporary artist could even attempt to replicate their splendor. That’s why Michael Bublé is so exceptional. The Canadian singer grew up listening to his grandfather’s old jazz records, according to Bublé’s webpage. Bublé (note the accent on the ‘e’—it’s not pronounced like “bubble”) said in an interview with Applause magazine for their February 2008 issue, “Although I like rock ’n’ roll and modern music, the first time my granddad played me the Mills Brothers, something magical happened. The lyrics were so romantic, so real. . . the way a song should be for me. It was like seeing my future flash before me. I wanted to be a singer and I knew that this was the music that I wanted to sing.” His most recent album, “Call Me Irresponsible,” has soared to No. 1 in Billboard’s Top Jazz Album chart and has remained there for 54 weeks since its release on May 1, 2007. In this album, Bublé sings his modern versions of several standards, in addition to two self-written songs. The album opens with a soulful, jazzy rendition of Cy Coleman’s “The Best is Yet to Come,” which was popularized by Frank Sinatra. In fact, Bublé’s voice has a striking similarity to Sinatra’s. I’ve even heard of first-time listeners mistaking Bublé’s version of “The Best is Yet to Come” and “Call Me Irresponsible” for the original Sinatra versions, a most flattering testament to Bublé’s vocal abilities. The charming, rich timbre of his voice shines in this album. He juggles many different eras and genres of music, from the upbeat rumba-esque rhythms of “It Had Better Be Tonight” to the smooth, sensual tones found in the Gamble and Huff classic, “Me and Mrs. Jones” (for which Bublé’s girlfriend, Emily Blunt from “The Devil Wears Prada,” sings the back-up vocals), to his two wonderful original titles, “Lost” and “Everything.” The first, “Lost,” is likely a break-up song written about his long-time girlfriend (and later fiancée) Debbie Timuss, for whom he had previously composed “Home,” his first hit single in 2005. Bublé wrote “Home’s” beautiful melody while he was abroad in Europe, describing the pain of being in a long-distance relationship, and how one wants more than anything to go home. After the couple’s painful break-up, Bublé produced “Lost,” a sad, nostalgic personal tale of lost love, one of the two more pop-like songs on the disc. The other, “Everything,” is a much more uplifting piece. A love song probably written about his new girlfriend, Emily Blunt (“My Summer of Love,” “The Devil Wears Prada”), “Everything” is an infectious ode to the joys of newfound love — and undoubtedly my favorite of the album. He sings, “And in this crazy life, and through these crazy times, it’s you, it’s you — you make me sing. You’re every line; you’re every word; you’re everything.” With such touching lyrics, Michael Bublé is truly irresistible. On April 29, 2008, Bublé released an EP entitled “A Taste of Bublé,” sold exclusively at Wal-Mart, which earned a respectable 35 on Billboard’s Top 40 Album Chart. In the EP, he sings a new, more rhythmic, catchy version of “Everything” and some other favorites. In the end, for listeners looking to listen to something modern, but classy and tasteful at the same time, Michael Bublé is your solution. With fresh, remade interpretations of classic jazz, Mr. Bublé shamelessly proves the old proverb that everything old is new again.