A tale of two Boltons
Glorieta man in running for reality show where he would switch with famed singer

Ana Maria Trujillo | The New Mexican
Posted: Saturday, January 22, 2011 - 1/23/11

Much like the fictitious character Michael Bolton in the movie Office Space, Michael Bolton of Glorieta has had his fair share of corny jokes thrown his way from time to time.

He'll say, "I'm Michael Bolton," and people will respond, "No you're not. Where's the band?" or "Sing a song," as though he were the singer, Michael Bolton.

Over time, Bolton, 47, has learned to respond to these comments.

"I'll say, 'Yes I am;' 'I don't have the band with me;' 'You don't have enough money to pay me;' or whatever I can think of at the moment," Bolton said. But his sharing a name with the famed singer could possibly get him a spot on a CBS reality show to be titled Same Name.

A few days after Thanksgiving, Bolton had a voicemail from a person at CBS, asking if he was interested in being considered for a reality show in which a "regular" Michael Bolton will switch lives with the singer Michael Bolton for a week.

"I don't know how they found me," Bolton said. "It's kind of like being in a dream. Somebody pinch me and wake me up; but at the same time I don't want to wake up."

In an interview with producers last week, Bolton asked how many Michael Boltons they found. "I guess there are about 15 of us."

Now, there are about five Michael Boltons left in the running to be part of the reality show. Bolton said he would find out by the end of the week whether he was selected to switch lives with Michael Bolton.

"I definitely hope I get selected," Bolton said.

Bolton doesn't watch a lot of television, so he isn't familiar with many reality shows. He doesn't believe the network will make him do any sort of challenge or embarrassing task — but he does have a few reservations.

"I truly think my biggest apprehension will be getting stage fright in front of the camera," Bolton said. "And sticking my foot in my mouth. I know people are going to laugh at me just because I'm on TV."

Though Bolton is familiar with the singer's work, he's more a fan of the Rolling Stones and the Beatles.

Bolton, a former Marine who served four years in Beirut, has been a plumber for
30 years. Though he's currently out of work, he's been doing "odds and ends" plumbing jobs and thinks that if he's chosen for the reality show, doing that kind of work would be the hardest part for the singer.

Bolton said the singer might find his life "mundane."

"Right now he's on tour in Europe," Bolton said. "I've got very little going on in my life compared to what he has, but at the same time I've got two daughters. A little bit of irony I discovered online is my youngest daughter and his new granddaughter are both named Amelia."

Bolton and his wife, Tahirih Bolton, have two children — Lindsey, 7, and Amelia, 4. Some parts of Bolton's daily life include taking his children to school in Eldorado, getting firewood, doing a few plumbing jobs and working on a car he's built from "parts from different vehicles destined for the scrap yard."

The car, which Bolton described as an "open wheel roadster" is a hybrid of several different vehicles, including Chevrolet cars from 1931 and 1954 and a Dodge from 1923. He said it would look like what car enthusiasts know as the Lakes Roadster.

"(Producers) were very curious when I mentioned my street rod," Bolton said, as he showed a picture of the convertible car with big wheels on his cell phone. "I grew up around muscle cars, and this is the first car I've actually built from the ground up."

If he's selected, Bolton will trust his car to the show, he said.

He added that if he's selected he'd be most excited to meet all the musicians "regardless of their style of music," he said. He'd like to "just be around some of those musicians."

Bolton said that many of his friends are supportive and excited for him.

"Nobody has been negative, and that's kind of surprising," Bolton said.

He said he would be excited to be chosen. "I'd probably be floating on a cloud for a day or two.

"I never believed anything like this could ever happen to me."


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