from the album Soul Provider (1989)
Billboard Hot 100 peak: #3 (one week)
Weeks in the Top-40: 12
The song of today for this Valentine's comes from romantic adult-pop singer/songwriter Michael Bolton, whose sixth album (and second big hit set) Soul Provider had provided him with a top-20 pop hit with the title track before his "remake" of his own composition "How Am I Supposed To Live Without You" (originally released by Laura Branigan) took him all the way to #1 for the first time in his career. The third single from the record would be the uptempo pop/rock confection "How Can We Be Lovers". Written by Michael with the two biggest "song doctors" of the decade, Desmond Child and Diane Warren, the pop-metal-lite track swirled around the catchy chorus hook "how can we be lovers if we can't be friends" while the production took its cues from the likes of Def Leppard and Bon Jovi. The break-up song had universal appeal and his delivery was spot-on (not as histrionic as he could be), and ages much better than some of his other singles.
"How Can We Be Lovers" became Bolton's second top-ten pop hit in the U.S. in May of 1990. The single also spent a week at #3 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary (or "easy listening") radio chart. Internationally, the song reached the top ten in Canada (#2), Australia (#3), Sweden (#10), and the UK (#10).
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Obviously the song provided a needed bit of uptempo energy to Bolton's live show. Here he is in concert in 1992...
Up tomorrow: Dance-pop trio takes your pulse.