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Sweet Sounds

After being heard in China for decades, Michael Bolton, who enjoys a reputation for sweet-toned singing, will make his debut in China in the Capital Gymnasium on December 14.


Though arriving a bit late, Bolton, an American, will warm his fans who have been waiting so patiently for the soft, touching melodies that could lead them to remember the moments when their hearts were first touched.


A prolific composer and singer, Bolton was born in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1953 as Michael Bolotin. With two hit singles, How Am I Supposed to Live Without You? and When a Man Loves a Woman, he won Grammys in 1990 and 1992. He also received four other Grammy nominations and has won six American Music Awards, writing popular songs for himself and other singers.


"Nowadays the musical atmosphere is fairly compatible and full of experimental spirit," Bolton said. "My music is very diversified to include R&B, pop, classical and even pop music from the 70s and 80s."


Bolton began his music career at age 13 by singing in bars. Although quite young, he realized then that the most touching element in his music was his sound, which explained why he has captured the hearts of millions of fans.



In 1968, he signed his first recording contract. His first formal album in his original name was released in 1975, with his second album, Every Day of My Life, the next year. In 1978, he made an attempt to form a hard-rock band named "Blackjack" with friends, but the "metal" time ended quickly as the band disbanded after two albums.


Although Bolton released another two albums in 1983 and 1985, he did not break through until 1987, when he presented his album, The Hunger, in which he switched from rock to soul. His 1989 album, Soul Provider, made him a superstar, with sales of 4 million copies.


He was also widely acclaimed for participating in charity events benefiting people who he believes need help. "From a different perspective, many people are quite lucky. Among them, many believe that it is a simple truth to help those less privileged than we," he said when he began his own foundation in 1993.


Bolton released his album Only a Woman Like You in 2002 and Vintage in 2003. With the latest album in September, Til the End of Forever, and this month's gig here, the 52-year-old is planning to keep mellowing on.


(China Daily December 7, 2005)

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