Saturday, January 31, 2015

Recap of MICHAEL BUBLE Live in MANILA 2015: A Charming and Comic Crooner

January 31, 2015




We had a family event to attend earlier in the evening, so we got to the MOA Arena area by around 8:15 pm. I thought there was still enough time to catch the concert. However, I never imagined that the whole Arena parking building would or could be totally filled up. The open parking areas nearby were also all full. I had to make a major roundabout to make it back to the main mall parking. It was already past 9 pm when I got a parking slot. We still had to rush to the Arena and climb up flights of stairs. 

We reached our seats by around 9:20 pm already. I was happy to see that the people really left our reserved seats vacant despite our tardiness. I was very relieved. I had a feeling maybe we already missed about three or four songs already when we arrived. (Friends would tell me later that I missed the front act performance of Naturally 7 and the two songs (namely "Fever"and "Haven't I Met You Yet?") Buble began his concert with.)

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We caught Michael Buble smartly dressed in a snappy black tux (which he would be wearing for the whole show) towards the end of a joking spiel. The stage had three big screens behind him to ensure that everyone can see him. The center screen had some nifty graphic designs to serve as his backdrop. The first song we heard him sing "Try a Little Tenderness." He introduced the next song as a 1948 song written by Sarah Geronimo (?!). No one reacted so I thought I simply heard wrong. The song was Sinatra's "You Make Me Feel So Young." Then he sang Van Morrison's "Moondance" and another Sinatra song "Come Dance with Me." Buble finished this set off with "Feeling Good" and "I've Got the World on a String." He started off in very good voice.



Then he began to joke around again, introducing his band mates with bizarrely funny stories. This guy is a comedian, an irreverent one at that. He confessed that he cracked a Sarah Geronimo joke that no one got. He was told that Sarah G. was actually in the house, and the camera showed her on the screen. He is not afraid to bring race into his jokes! He introduced his pianist as a Fil-Am guy which of course got the audience excited. Then he took that back, saying, "(he) was just a "stupid" Chinese guy. He introduced the next song as something no Filipino would ever sing. It turned out to be Journey's "Don't Stop Believing," obviously goofing off, and letting the audience fill in the high notes. I did not notice if Arnel Pineda was also in the audience that night.



The loud applause began when the audience heard the intro to his recent hit song, "Everything." Following this, he sang another popular standard "That's All." He then talked about collaborating with Barry Gibb, then sung his cover of "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?" Then he said he will sing the wedding theme song of his grandparents. Surprise, surprise, he sang "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)" (VIDEO)! 




He mentioned that he owes his career to the reception he got during his first Manila stint back in 2003. My wife and I were one of the lucky ones to have been there at the Podium for his free mall show back then. He talked about his time spent with Kris Aquino the night before, and complimented her for being so nice. Apparently, Kris mentioned that her favorite among his songs was "Hold On", so he sang it for the audience even he did not really sing this in concerts. 

The next song was the very popular hit "Home" (VIDEO) which was accompanied by video of different types of families on a sofa. Great song. However, I do not know if Buble was having difficulty with the songs or it was the sound system where we were seated, but his voice sounded thin at points and a number of high notes were being dropped from this point. We did not mind too much as the show was going so well.




He announced he will now do his fast songs. He unexpectedly sang "Get Lucky" by Daft Punk! Then, he surprised the people in the VIP seats by going down the stage and making his way into the aisles. Of course everybody wanted to touch him and shake his hands as he did this. He went to a secondary stage set up at the back of the orchestra section and this made the people around this stage to go wild. There he worked the crowd more as he sang with a great-sounding acapella singing group called Naturally 7 to cover Motown hits like "Who's Loving You" and "Ain't Too Proud to Beg." 



He then sang "To Love Somebody" and everybody was singing along. He made his way back to the big stage via the song "All You Need Is Love". This number ended in a arena-wide confetti shower with red and white hearts. Certainly a most beautiful and festive sight to see!  I thought he would end it there, but he went on to sing "Burnin' Love" (with Buble dancing like Elvis) and another of his sprightly originals, "It's a Beautiful Day." 

Then, Buble bid the audience goodbye and exited the stage. We all knew better though -- the house lights were still off, so we know there is more to come. So we clamored for more.




Buble came back on stage with a big over-the-top flourish with his dramatic and stormy version of "Cry Me A River." This ended in a fantastic stunt on his stage backdrop as you will see in the video above. He then went on to sing "Save the Last Dance for Me". He ended everything softly with "A Song for You" (by Leon Russell). The ending was rather unusual. He shut off his microphone and began to sing the last lines of the song acapella, powerfully projecting his voice over the din of the crowd. We could hear that he was singing something where we were seated, but the words were not so clear. It might have sounded great in the orchestra area but I would not know.

That ended an excellent evening with wonderful music and songs. His voice may not have been as strong as expected the whole night, but his genuine friendly personality, goofy charm, sharp showmanship and generosity as a performer were more than enough to carry him through to make this a most memorable concert.



19 comments:

  1. Talented Artiste and so underrated. He can sing and exudes sophiscation

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  2. Wow! Wow! Wow! I'm jealous. I've wished to have an experience like this. That's Michael Buble right there! I'd say congrats on witnessing a great concert! Such an artist! :D

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  3. Wow the guy looks so good in a tux. I wish I could attend the concert too.

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  4. An event I did missed. Michael is such a great artist you are so lucky to have seen him performed.

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  5. Based on your story, it looks like a fun night. Money well-spent! I have a friend who watched the show and she took a photo of those heart confettis.

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  6. I really like his songs, It's a Beautiful Day! so good and you feel relax. Happy that you've got your parking slot and you make it to the concert! :)

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  7. I LOVE Michael! I didn't know he was in Manila! (Well it makes sense because I'm no longer in the PH at the moment) But anyhow, this is great :D I especially like his voice so I bet everyone had a great time.

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  8. Wow! I wish he'd come back to Cebu. His voice is very cool! ^_^

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  9. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Michael Buble!!! So very jealous indeed!! Loved his Christmas show on TV but it had me in tears :( Sim @ simslife.co.uk

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  10. Lucky you get to watch Michael Buble. Too bad I missed his performance as the ticket is kind of expensive.

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  11. So nice! I wish I could catch him live as well.. But the tickets is too pricey for me.. sob sob!

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  12. I love his unique voice! I;m glad you had this amazing opportunity to watch him, I wish I could hear his voice live =)

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  13. great way to bond and relax with your family watching him. lucky you!

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  14. I always hear about how great his songs are, but somehow, I wasn't really captived by his songs! Maybe it's just not my type! But I had to admit, his concert sounds fun and entertaining!

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  15. Michael came into the spotlight in a bug way and everyone was buying his music. He is a talented artist and while he appeals to some, he might not appeal to all. In my opinion, he has a great voice

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  16. I love Michael Buble's specific and tender voice. His music always gets me in such a romantic mood. You were lucky to have him live in Manila. Such a great performer and singer!

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  17. Spectacular performance, Michael Buble is a true entertainer. He was here in Malaysia too.

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  18. I have always wanted to hear him live. I understand he is amazing!

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  19. Guys, I want to attend a reputed band musical events in New York with my friend on this weekend. Actually, I don’t want to spend time at home. So, if anyone knows, please share information with me.

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