Matthew Morrison sometimes feels like he was born in the wrong generation.
Ask the Glee star who his favorite performer is and he’ll quickly answer: Gene Kelly. Then he’ll talk about his love for Dino and Sammy and Frank. For him, there is no one better than the song and dance men of the past. But it’s 2013 and since Michael Bublè is currently ruling the charts with his throwback routine, it’s not easy for anyone else to go out and record a successful standards record.
Lucky for Morrison, he found a mutual old soul in Adam Levine, who gave him the go ahead to make the album he’s always wanted to make.
“I always thought of him as the pop rock guy but he has such an infinite for this kind of music I’m doing on this new album,” Morrison told Radio.com. “So much so that he was like, ‘We need to do an album of you and this music.’”
The Maroon 5 frontman signed Morrison to his label 222 Records and enlisted legendary producer Phil Ramone, who worked with everyone from Frank Sinatra to Barbra Streisand to Billy Joel before passing away earlier this year, to help the actor work on an album filled with standards and Broadway hits.
It wasn’t easy for Morrison to come up with a tracklist for his new release, Where It All Began. In the end he chose songs that fit his voice, many of which he had sang before including “Young In The Springtime” from South Pacific. The singer, who made his Broadway debut at the age of 19, also included “On The Street Where You Live” from My Fair Lady, which is Morrison’s audition song. It even helped him land his role on Glee.
“This is just a little taste of home for me,” Morrison said. “These are the songs I love to sing. And these are classic well-worn songs sung by the greatest vocalists of all time.”
Thanks to Levine Morrison also got a chance to record in the Capitol Building out in Los Angeles in the legendary Frank Sinatra room. He even got a chance to sing into the same mic ol’ Blue Eyes used back in the day. “There was this feeling of nostalgia,” Morrison explained. “Some kind of otherworldly presence. It was pretty amazing.”
Morrison said he couldn’t ask for a better boss.
“[Levine’s] an artist himself,” Morrison explained. “He knows how an artist should be treated and he really just gave me free reign on this to do whatever I wanted from the very beginning.”
The singer even said Levine only came by the studio three times and was “beyond happy” about how it was turning out. Morrison was also beyond happy about working with Levine and his record label.
“There’s so much love and care behind this project,” he said. “It’s sort of been a dream situation.”
Watch Morrison’s dance-filled video for “It Don’t Mean A Thing” off Where It All Began, out now, below.