"My grandfather was the one who opened up to me a world which seemed to have been passed over by my generation," says Canadian hearth-throb and crooner Michael Buble. "Although I like rock and roll and modern music, the first time my grandfather 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."
Having experienced this musical epiphany in his youth, the Vancouver-born hunk went on to become one of his homeland's hottest musicians and an international star with his unique renditions of classic sounds originally made famous by the likes of Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Tony Bennett.
Born into a close-knit, middle-class family on September 9, 1975, Michael, who has a younger sister, Crystal, grew up immersed in the classic Forties and Fifties melodies beloved of his Italian grandfather. Convinced of his grandson's talent, the Buble patriarch was determined to get the youngster's career off the ground, trading his own plumbing skills for opportunities for Michael to perform with musical clients. "My grandfather was really my best friend growing up," says the singer.
Before establishing himself as a musician, Michael pursued a very different path, working with his salmon fisherman father for six years. Music was always his first love, though, and the budding singer honed his talent in talent shows and with performances at conventions and on cruise ships.
The big break came in the summer of 2000 when an aide to former prime minister Brian Mulroney caught one of Michael's gigs in Toronto. Impressed, he presented the up-and-coming artist to his boss, who became an instant fan. It was to be a fortuitous crossing of paths, as the Canadian premier in turn introduced the fledgling star to acclaimed music impresario David Foster.
Having signed with the Grammy-winning producer, the singer began work on his debut album, which recreated classics such as Come Fly With Me
and Crazy Little Thing Called Love
, and drew comparisons with legendary rat packers Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin.
With fellow Canadian Paul Anka as his mentor, Michael's career went from strength to strength. The self-titled 2003 album was an instant success, turning triple platinum in his homeland and making bestseller lists in over 15 others. More accolades followed, with 2006's It's Time
- which in addition to swing-era classics featured the original single Home
- also notching up platinum before going on to scoop four Juno awards and two Grammy nods.
These days, while enjoying success with his own material his self-penned single Home
picked up a Single of the Year Juno in 2006 the LA-based star continues to work closely with some of the music industry's most legendary voices.
In 2004, following a back-stage encounter at one of his concerts, he found love with British The Devil Wears Prada
star Emily Blunt. For a while the couple shared a home in Vancouver, but split in July 2008.
The singer married his Argentine girlfriend, 23-year-old actress Luisana Loreley Lopilato de la Torre, in a civil ceremony in Buenos Aires in 2011.