It would be easy for Michael Bolton to simply look back on his accomplishments.
"It's nice to have a Bob Dylan collaboration, a KISS multiplatinum album from writing with them, to a Streisand CD and then the Kanye West with Jay-Z [song]," Bolton said in a recent conference call. "I want my whole career to look like that."
With his new album, "One World, One Love" (Universal), which features collaborations with Lady Gaga and Ne-Yo, and a new tour, which stops at Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center on Sunday, Bolton is eagerly looking forward.
Both contacts came through someone at the record label and I happened to be a big fan of Ne-Yo's, so that was a no-brainer. With Gaga, I said, "Please send me some MP3s," because that's what we do now, that way you can get back to your room and have some example of someone's work on your computer. The first song I listened to was "Just Dance," which sounded like a giant record to me. . . . She started singing these melodies to me and these lyrics and I realized I've got a real artist in front of me.
The more I got to know her, the more I liked her and I said, "It has to be something that's gonna kill people when they hear it." She said, "Well, I have this idea for a title called, 'Murder My Heart.' " That's how it began.
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What can people expect on the tour?
I still believe that an artist who's been around a while has a responsibility to bring the hits to your audience. You've gotta bring songs that were a part of the backdrop of what people's lives were when they were celebrating those songs. . . . I've heard this several times when someone has gone to see a great artist and they say, "I just didn't love the concert." When I say, "Why?" they answer, "All I heard was the new album. . . . We kept waiting for our favorite songs and we didn't get them." I don't ever want to be that artist.