Song Review: Michael Bolton – “How Can We Be Lovers”

“How Can We Be Lovers” was released as the third single from Michael Bolton’s 1989 album, Soul Provider. The single was released in 1990 and peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

I was 14 years old and in the ninth grade when this single was released. I’d fallen in love with his previous single, “How Am I Supposed to Live Without You,” and I was just amazed when I heard “How Can We Be Lovers” for the first time. Prior to this single, all I’d heard from Michael had been midtempo songs and ballads, so hearing him do something that was this upbeat and much closer to rock was different. But it was a good kind of different, and I fell in love with this song. 25 years later, I can easily say that “How Can We Be Lovers” is still one of my all-time favorite songs by Michael Bolton. When I was 14, what attracted me to the song would have been more the sound of it than its lyrics, since I basically had no experience with love at that point in my life. Now that I’m older, I have a much greater appreciation for the lyrics of this song.

The music video has a strong focus on Michael Bolton lip syncing the song with a band and female backing singers behind him. Intercut with this are shots of Michael and actress Nicolette Sheridan portraying a couple that seems to be developing a distance between them. It’s not a bad video for what it is, all things considered.

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