Michael Bolton, widely acclaimed as one of pop music’s most successful songwriters, is also a recording artist of major stature, having achieved sales of more than 35 million albums worldwide. In the process, he has also become the proud owner of a pair of Grammys and six American Music Awards.
Bolton’s music credentials include songwriting collaborations with the legendary Bob Dylan as well as a proven catalog of his own songs, recorded by such notable names as Barbra Streisand, Joe Cocker, Kenny Rogers, Cher, Greg Allman, Patti LaBelle, Kenny G., The Pointer Sisters, Laura Branigan and numerous others. His achievements as a writer, in addition to his multirecording successes, have made him the hands-down choice for the 1995 Hitmaker Award of the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
In being named for this special accolade, Bolton joins such stars as Barry Manilow, Whitney Houston, Chuck Berry, Rosemary Clooney and our own Margaret Whiting in our honor roll of past “Hitmakers.”
But success to Michael Bolton is more than hit records and sold-out concerts. It’s also an opportunity to add voice, time and actions to many worthy charities. Bolton firmly believes that, as an artist, he must do everything within his power to assist those causes in which he believes. “Many of us are truly fortunate in so many ways,” he says. “And many of us feel that giving something back and helping those less fortunate than ourselves, is simply the right thing to do.”
In line with this outlook, Bolton has lent support and talent to such respected organizations as One to One, Cystic Fibrosis, Pediatric AIDS, City Kids, The City of Hope, The TJ. Martell Foundation, The Boys Choir of Harlem, Juvenile Diabetes, The United Negro College Fund, Ronald McDonald Charities and The Harlem School of the Arts.
Bolton is also dedicated to the ongoing fight for civil rights, particularly the struggle for children’s and women’s rights. In recognition of his humanitarian work for children, he received the prestigious Lewis Hine Award from the National Child Labor Committee. He also serves as honorary chairman of
The National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse.
By now, the legend of Michael Bolton’s softball team, The Bolton Bombers, is well known. Bolton himself plays third base (“the hot corner”) and is one of the team’s power hitters. While touring, team members spend their days on the softball diamond, slugging it out against local celebrities, with all profits going to charity.
One of the highest points in Bolton’s accomplishments came in 1993 with the formal establishment of The Michael Bolton Foundation, whose existence has two principal goals: First, to act on the problems of children and women, at risk due to poverty, emotional, physical and sexual abuse, and second, through education and effective programs, to create social awareness, broaden horizons and expand opportunities for youth across socio-economic and multi-cultural lines.
Bolton’s commitment to children, as to his music, is absolute. Despite the frantic pace of his day-to-day life, lie plans to continue his Foundation work “until every child is safe, until every child has a fighting chance!”