'I'll do anything I can do': Crooner Michael Bublé urges Canadians to take COVID-19 seriously
The singer is using social media, livestreaming from home to encourage physical distancing
After Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that the government may be forced to enforce physical distancing rules, singer Michael Bublé is urging Canadians to take the message seriously.
"When you saw him speaking or sending out those tweets, I think ... it was a final appeal for Canadians to follow the rules," Bublé told q host Tom Power.
"Because if they refuse, I think he's going to take it out of our hands — and he should."
On Monday, Trudeau asked Bublé, and other Canadian celebrities, to spread the word about staying home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Canadian crooner says he wasn't surprised.
You need to stay home. And so do your friends and family members. Help spread the word with your own video - and tag your friends to remind them to stay home too. And together, we can <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/PlankTheCurve?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#PlankTheCurve</a>. <a href="https://twitter.com/MichaelBuble?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MichaelBuble</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/VancityReynolds?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@VancityReynolds</a> - can you help? <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/StayAtHomeSaveLives?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#StayAtHomeSaveLives</a> <a href="https://t.co/f1PQQrzMIK">pic.twitter.com/f1PQQrzMIK</a>—@JustinTrudeau
By the time Trudeau shared the now-viral tweet — complete with a video message from his Rideau Cottage kitchen — Bublé says he had already heard from doctors and nurses pleading for help.
"I know I'm just some singer guy, but I told them I'll do anything I can do," he said in a phone interview on Friday.
Since those calls, Bublé says he's spoken with Canadian superstars — from hockey players Sidney Crosby and Wayne Gretsky, to pop singer Justin Bieber — in hopes they too can spread the word.
'We're at war'
In response to the pandemic, Bublé has cancelled dates for his U.S. tour until April 5.
He's also taken to social media, posting videos and hosting daily livestreams on Facebook, to encourage followers to practice physical distancing and help "flatten the curve" — an effort to reduce the number of COVID-19 cases and alleviate strain on Canada's health-care system.
True to his message, Bublé is hosting the livestreams with his wife Luisana Lopilato from their home.
"How long is it going to take for people, truly, to stop? I took my kids to Burnaby Mountain [and] there were people — 12 people, 12 kids — up on a mountain drinking beer," he said.
"Does it take your mom or your grandpa or your son to be on life support in a hospital to understand the seriousness — that we're at war?"
I know how lucky I am to have the ability to stay home and that it’s not as simple for everyone, but together we can <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/PlankTheCurve?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#PlankTheCurve</a>. Please, if you can, if at all possible, stay home. It will save lives. I nominate <a href="https://twitter.com/jannarden?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@jannarden</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/justinbieber?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@justinbieber</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/cmcdavid97?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@cmcdavid97</a> <br> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/StayHomeSaveLives?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#StayHomeSaveLives</a> <a href="https://t.co/Ldj6arUFih">https://t.co/Ldj6arUFih</a>—@MichaelBuble
While Bublé says he's lucky to be able to take time off work — and acknowledges that many Canadians are struggling financially during the pandemic — he is also asking non-essential businesses to close their doors.
On Friday, the federal government announced a 75 per cent wage subsidy for small and medium businesses in an effort to thwart layoffs.
Fill the days
With three children at home during the crisis, Bublé says physical distancing has been tough — especially when it comes to homeschooling.
"I've realized that there are so many things that I am — and one of the things that I am not is a teacher," he said.
Bublé says he and his family have been filling days with everything from writing lessons to aerobics "just to get everybody moving." The days are exhausting, he admitted.
As the number of COVID-19 cases in Canada grows, and Canadians continue to practice physical distancing, Bublé added that it's important to have perspective.
"It's been said now many times — it's become sort of a cliché — but our grandparents were asked to fight in a war," he said.
"We're just being asked to watch Netflix on the couch."
Written by Jason Vermes. Produced by Cora Nijhawan