Michael Bublé is trying to change the name of one of PepsiCo's products -- and he's taking his mission to Super Bowl 53
Whether you’re a football fan or not, we can all (for the most part) agree that one of the best things about the Super Bowl is indubitably the onslaught of creative, provocative and downright entertaining commercials that play in-between breaks.
The advertisements usually involve celebrity cameos and big names tied to products and initiatives that are set to make a splash in their industry — and when the celebrity’s last name can be easily mistaken for the name of the product, it’s bound to be a smash hit.
This year, four-time Grammy award-winning singer Michael Bublé is starring in his first-ever Super Bowl commercial by pairing up with Pepsi’s sparkling water brand bubly.
Pronounced “bubbly”, the commercial shows a determined Bublé out to let the world know that the sparkling water should be pronounced “Bublé.”
Bublé’s experience with a commercial of this magnitude was about as light and fun as bubly itself:
“I thought it was very funny, I loved the concept — my whole crew did.
Getting to the set and getting to talk to the director and the writer (Harold Einstein), it was remarkable, because he was smart and funny and intelligent and honest to God, I think Pepsi makes great commercials so I knew I was in good hands.
I didn’t know about bubly water, I had never heard about it. Right when I got off the phone with my manager and he had said ‘Okay, it’s this drink called bubly sparkling water’ I literally hung up the phone and my sister and my brother-in-law walked into my house, and my sister was drinking a can of [bubly] and she was like ‘Oh my god, I love this stuff!’ and I was like ‘Oh my god, the universe is coming together!’”
Bublé, who’s also starred in commercials for Starbucks and is a longstanding ambassador for Rolex, (“I’ve got to sort of join my wagon to these really, incredibly classy companies with great products. I’ve been really lucky with that”) Bublé is no stranger to comedic gigs that play on his last name:
“What was really fun for me was that it wasn’t the first time that I’ve had the opportunity to sort of use my name as part of having fun with a product or a skit or comedy. I remember going on ‘Saturday Night Live’ and Seth Meyers was a part of the cast. He was a great writer for the show … and he had written this skit for me and John Hamm. And so John and I walked in and he handed us this script for this thing called “Hamm and Bubbly” and it was so funny, it was kind of a play on both of our names. So when I got this script for this commercial, I was so excited because it kind of harkened back to that and I remembered how well that had worked.”
Because the international superstar knows that around the world, his fans have some questionable names of their own for him:
“In Britain and the U.K., they call me ‘Mickey Bubbles.’ In places like Australia and Africa they call me ‘Mickey Boobs’ and in the Latin community, in Mexico and Spain, they call me ‘Miguel Barbujas’ … it’s not the first time people have sort of made fun of my name, so it was perfect."
In fact, Bublé is so dedicated to his international fan base that his latest album, which is read as ‘Love’, is actually titled without words but simply as the red heart emoji.
The concept seems rather revolutionary and on-trend for the Canadian crooner whose music usually plays to timeless themes and old-fashioned vocals and melodies.
But the choice to name an album after a symbol isn’t a marketing technique to make Bublé seem more appealing to the younger generations or a nod to a move into a more non-traditional career — he needs neither of these things.
In fact, the album name serves quite the opposite purpose:
“I wish that was my idea but it wasn’t! Someone from the record company was a genius and said ‘You know, no one has ever used an emoji as a symbol of the record.’
What I loved most about that heart emoji, that symbol, was that I’m more famous outside of [the U.S. and Canada], far more famous in 45 or 50 countries around the world where English is not the first language. And I loved that I could have a symbol on my record that could tell someone in Spain or Italy or Germany or Thailand or anywhere — that they know that symbol is love. And I just thought that was the most beautiful thing to be able to, in that most humble way, give them something that was in their own heart language without having to say it … I thought that was a really genius thing.”
It’s that notion of Bublé giving back to his fans and the love they’ve shown his family through trying times over the past few years that set him apart from most artists — the gratitude, respect and true love that Bublé has for his fans around the world is all-encompassing and genuine.
And to Bublé, the only way to begin to try to return that support and love is through his upcoming world tour, set to kick off in February 2019:
“I’ve gone through a lot and people have given me so much love. They’ve lifted my family up through a tough time and they’ve prayed for us and they’ve shown us so much grace. It means more to me than I can ever explain, to be able to show up in their neighborhood, in their backyard and to stand there and sort of just really, truly with my actions show them my appreciation for all that they’ve given me. I don’t think that anything else can make up for that right now. I think that this is a really great opportunity for me to go to 45 countries all over the world and to express that gratitude and that love. And if I thought that doing a movie was the best way of doing that, then I’d probably do a movie. But right now, I feel that the best way I can do that is by showing up and telling them … showing them through the music, through my energy and working my a** off for them.”
Having the opportunity to express those feelings of gratefulness and appreciation isn’t just something that Bublé will have on his mind in the upcoming months, but rather the thing he’s looking most forward to when he’s on the road:
“I know it may sound cringey or whatever, but going through what I went through, I didn’t know what would happen for me. I didn’t know if — or when — I would come back [to music]. And to know that kind of support that I’ve been shown, it’s overwhelming for me and it’s emotional for me. And that is what it’s about for me. It really is. It’s about just feeling blessed. And for cynical people out there, they may not understand. But I am overwhelmed and emotional —I really am — about that support and that love and it gets to me. And I know that it’s gonna make lyrics and songs and moments even more powerful for me, and I’m so excited to be able to show people that and to express that and to feel that kind of love and that connection.
I wish I could lie to you and say it was something else, but I think it’s going to be cathartic for me and I think for my family it will be. And I wish there was a better way for me to just be able to say succinctly within a few words how much those people all over the world mean to me but they’ll never know, you know? So, the least I can do is show up and show them by working my as* off for them and singing my heart out and laughing with them and crying with them and dancing with them. That’s it -- the human experience, the greatest thing in the whole universe, is love. And I can’t believe that I get to go and share it in such a big way.
I think we need it. Honestly, the world is a crazy place and there’s a lot of dark things and scary things and if that’s my thing, if that’s what I’ve been put on this earth to create — moments of happiness and romance and positive things — then you know what, thank God. That’s a beautiful reason to be here.”
Nothing cringey about that in the slightest — in fact, we’d stand to call it brave.