US AOR act Blackjack formed in the late seventies out of an outfit called Carillo. The members were vocalist Michael Bolotin (aka Bolton), guitarist Bruce Kulick, bassist Jimmy Haslip and drummer Sandy Gennaro and they released their self-titled debut album in 1979. It was an excellent example of prime US melodic hard rock, with Bolotin's rasping, bluesy vocals and Kulick's tasteful guitar playing the stand-out features. This second album, although very good, was shaded by the debut, which contained a number of excellent tracks. When Blackjack split in the early 80's, Bolotin continued the solo career he started in the mid seventies, recording his self-titled debut solo album for CBS Records in 1983. Although he was now aiming at a more MOR audience, and was tremendously successful at it, Bolton is rightly regarded as one of the best male vocalists of all time. Kulick went on to find success in Kiss and worked in The Good Rats. Jimmy Haslip proved his versatility in fusion outfit, The Yellow Jackets, and Gennaro joined Pat Travers' band. Both Blackjack albums were released on a "two-on-one" CD in1 990.  
  

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Biography by Robert DeFreitas
Blackjack featured singer Michael Bolton (then performing under his real name, Michael Bolotin) and lead guitarist Bruce Kulick, who is currently with KISS. Bolton sings here in more of a rock & roll style, unlike his current material, which is more R&B or pop. 

 

Michael Bolton
Jimmy Haslip
Michael Bolotin
Chuck Kirkpatrick
Sandy Gennaro
Bruce Kulick
Jan Mullaney

Bruce Kulick
Kiss
Michael Bolton

 

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Blackjack - 1979 - Blackjack - 3.5/5

Blackjack - 1980 - Worlds Apart - 2.5/5

Rating

 

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