Bruno Mars Covers ‘WSJ Magazine,’ Talks Upcoming Tour, Culture Vulture Accusations, The 90s Sound, More

Before he takes off on his “24K Magic World Tour” later this month, Bruno Mars is doing press for the jaunt and his album of the same name. He recently did an interview and photo spread for WSJ Magazine where he talks about the trek, his album, and being called a “culture vulture.”

Regarding the tour, he says he wants his show to be worth the money, up to par with Prince and Michael Jackson. “I’ve seen Prince and Michael Jackson; those are nights I will remember forever. I’m not doing my job unless I leave a piece of me everywhere I go—if you do the right show, it will stay with people and they’ll tell their kids about it. I hope people can see what I was feeling when I made the records. Then I want to go beyond their expectations and fly.”

In January, Mars told Latina Magazine he stands on the shoulders of black artists as the foundation for his sound. When asked about accusations that he’s a “culture vulture,” Mars said: “Man, that pisses me off so much!” he says. “It’s so easy to say that, but anyone that does that kind of shit has never written a song in their life. That’s why I’m here, because of musicians before me… And I’m not stupid, of course it sounds like [the ’90s]. We’re using these vintage instruments and there is a certain sound, but it’s not just regurgitated. You can tell that we were listening to ’90s R&B. It has that spirit. That’s what we capture, and that’s what I want.”

Speaking of the 90s sound, he says it’s tricky to get the right sound without seeming cheesy. “We were trying really hard to tap into the ’90s R&B music that we grew up with, and it’s a very fine line—it can get tribute-y, it can sound forced,” Mars adds. “But that New Jack Swing sound brought me so much joy as a kid, so we took that on and did our best to try to get that feeling, that effortless fun.”

Hit “next” to check out Bruno’s photoshoot below:

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