With over four decades in music, 53 million albums sold and two GRAMMY awards to his name, singer Michael Bolton has had a storied career.

In his upcoming autobiography, The Soul Of It All, due out January 29, Michael opens up about his journey to the top of the charts and beyond, sharing intimate details about love, life, family and work.

The book, he writes, is about the “soul of it all; the passion, hard work, striving, sacrifices, joy, and faith it takes to keep the dream alive,” and just in the first chapter alone, Michael gives readers a glimpse at the hard road he traveled to achieve his dream in hopes to inspire yours.

In the meantime, we read the first chapter of his autobiography and found ten of the most interesting (and surprising) tidbits about his life.

1. He was a “hippie kid” in the ’60s that busked on street corners in Greenwich Village with his guitar for money.

2. Also in the ’60s, you could find Michael hitchhiking along Route 66 or trying to “push-start a vehicle that looked like a cross between a Wonder Bread truck and the Beatles’ Yellow Submarine” with his band mates.

3. Michael’s mother had to sign his first record contract because he was barely 16-years-old at the time it was offered.

4. At the end of the ’70s, he was a struggling rock singer and married father of three who was facing eviction from his home.

5. To pay the bills in the early ’80s, he sang the U.S. Army jingle “Be All You Can Be” as well as other radio and TV jingles for Dr. Pepper and Budweiser.

6. He’s written over 220 songs throughout his career for artists like Patti LaBelle, John Legend, Barbara StreisandCher and has been sampled by Jay-Z.

7. Though he has the reputation of being a serious romantic, Michael is “secretly a prankster and a fun-loving kind of guy.”

8. The Lonely Island sketch comedy trio – Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer, and Jorma Taccone-  refer to Michael as “Lord Boltron.”

9. The Lonely Island first presented Michael with an SNL Digital Short skit that was “hilariously funny, but really, really raunchy” about violating the Ten Commandments. Fearing he would upset his fans, Michael later regrouped with the trio to come up with his now famous “Captain Jack Sparrow” sketch.

10. The “Captain Jack Sparrow” music video has been viewed more than 90 million times and was the third most viewed YouTube video in 2011. The short was even nominated for an Emmy and performed live at the awards show.

If we learned all that in just the first chapter, we’re anxious to see what other intimate details he’ll pack into the book.

Like Michael Bolton’s Facebook page to receive an exclusive sneak peek of the first chapter of Soul Of It All, on shelves January 29, with several in store book signings  to follow.

Britt Bickel, 94.7 The WAVE

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