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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, November 22 2013 - Volume 41 Issue 47
Michael Bublé charms Seattle with stylish arena show
Arts & Entertainment
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Michael Bublé charms Seattle with stylish arena show

by Albert Rodriguez - SGN A&E Writer

MICHAEL BUBLÉ
KEY ARENA
November 15M


This guy knows how to party. With about 15,000 in attendance, Michael Bublé turned Key Arena into a festive, jazzy night of good music, laughs, and trips down memory lane.

Bublé, a three-time Grammy winner, appeared to the eager crowd from behind a half-drawn curtain, then slid down a ramp in a tuxedo and opened his two-hour concert with 'Fever' as firebombs erupted on stage. The drapes were pulled up for the next number, 'Haven't Met You Yet,' a song written for his wife when she was pregnant with their first child. She and the three month-old newborn, plus family members and close friends from Bublé's hometown of Vancouver, B.C., were in the front rows. 'It's almost like a hometown gig,' Bublé remarked.

He acknowledged a couple of diehard fans with handwritten signs, greeting one of them and posing with her for a photo, and then picked up a baby onesie that was tossed on stage. He talked joyfully about being a father, and joked about being surprised when spouse Luisana announced she was expecting, 'cause my wife gets around.'

SONG AND DANCE
He dazzled on a cover of Frank Sinatra's 'Try a Little Tenderness' and delivered a romantic yet swingy rendition of Van Morrison's 'Moondance' that allowed him to display some classy dance moves. The stage was big enough to hold a full band plus a local string ensemble, and a second stage was positioned at the opposite end of the arena for VIP guests - each stage had glossy, black flooring.

As Bublé sang 'Feeling Good,' a series of panel boards sprung up and down behind him and the background LED screen flashed smoke clouds to give it a James Bond-esque vibe. When introducing 'Crazy Love,' he naughtily quipped to all the single people in the audience, 'This is a wonderful opportunity to get yourself into a threesome.' He performed a soothing version of 'Home,' but I was slightly disappointed with his backdrop imagery. The accompanying video showed various couples, families, and pets, including interracial pairs, sitting and laughing on a sofa, yet no LGBT couples were included. Two men who might have been Gay appeared at the start of the video, though we only saw them for a few seconds and never again. For someone as LGBT-friendly as Bublé is, I felt he played it too safe.

Two surprise entries were slipped onto the set list: the first verse and chorus of Journey's 'Don't Stop Believin' and a laid-back run-through of Daft Punk's 'Get Lucky.' A medley performed at the alternate stage included the Jackson 5's 'I Want You Back,' the Bee Gees' 'To Love Somebody,' and The Beatles' 'All You Need Is Love.' Confetti was sprayed throughout the venue during the latter number.

'I DON'T WANNA GO'
An encore, with covers of the 1950s torch song 'Cry Me a River' and The Drifters' pop classic 'Save the Last Dance for Me,' pushed the show past the two-hour mark.

'I'm supposed to be finished, but I don't wanna go,' muttered Bublé. He then did an unusual song request for his 11 year-old nephew, O'Shae, the rather saucy 'Me and Mrs. Jones.' He closed out the performance with 'It's a Beautiful Day' from his latest album, To Be Loved, backed by animated pictures of rainbows and hot-air balloons.

The bad news for Michael Bublé fans is that he's outgrown intimate theaters, where his live music sounds 10 times better than inside a large sports arena. The good news, however, is that he hasn't even turned 40 yet. So we can expect plenty more where this show came from.

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