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Michael Bolton Takes on Music of 'Old Blue Eyes'


Singer Michael Bolton is known for writing and recording great songs. But he also has a knack for turning other people's songs into hits. Bolton once again grabs the spotlight with one of his most challenging albums yet.

Frank Sinatra has been gone for more than eight years, but tributes to the man who gave us such classics as "You Go To My Head" live on in Bolton Swings Sinatra.

For Michael Bolton, doing an album of Frank Sinatra songs was inevitable. Like Sinatra, Bolton achieved superstardom with a steady output of songs people couldn't help falling in love with. Starting out as the lead singer of a heavy metal band in the late-1970s, Bolton skyrocketed in 1989 with his multi-million-selling solo album Soul Provider, featuring the Grammy Award-winning single "How Am I Supposed To Live Without Out You."

The early-'90s were also fruitful. Bolton's album Time, Love And Tenderness sold more than eight million copies; he was a Top 10 Singles Artist of the Year in 1990; and he won his second Grammy plus two American Music Awards in 1992. After that, there were more hit singles, more awards, and even a Number One classical album, an achievement that eluded Frank Sinatra.

Perhaps the idea of turning 60 makes one think a little more about the passing of time and the work left to be done. Like Rod Stewart who recorded his first collection of pop standards when he was 57, or Barry Manilow who released his own Frank Sinatra tribute album at age 55, Michael Bolton, 53, felt it was time to take his shot at some of the greatest songs ever written.

Of course, having a flawless band always helps when performing the Great American Songbook. On his new album, Bolton experiences what Frank Sinatra probably experienced recording with a world-class big band; 17 horns, 35 string players, and a crew of seasoned producers and engineers working out of the same studio Sinatra used at Capitol Records.

One slight difference, Sinatra never recorded a duet with his fiancée. From Bolton Swings Sinatra, Michael Bolton teams up with his soon-to-be wife, actress Nicollette Sheridan, on "The Second Time Around."