Thursday, May 27, 2010
I found so many when I was trolling around this morning, this is just a teaser. When I get a minute I'm going to upload them all to the BJCT Photobucket. You can look for them there later today, but for now, enjoy this little taste of Jovi goodness...
From the New Jersey Star Ledger:
Fans fill New Meadowlands Stadium as Jon Bon Jovi performs live
EAST RUTHERFORD — With the rubble of the old Giants Stadium kicking up dust next door, concertgoers filled New Meadowlands Stadium yesterday to watch Bon Jovi christen the $1.6 billion complex with a sold-out concert that heralded a new era in New Jersey sports and entertainment.
Jon Bon Jovi took the stage at 8:45 p.m., raised his fist in the air and launched into stadium-shaking renditions of "Blood on Blood," "We Weren’t Born to Follow" and "You Give Love a Bad Name."
"The New Meadowlands Stadium: I like it, I like it, I like it. Out with the old, in with the new," Bon Jovi told the crowd. "I get to be the first guy to get on a big microphone and say welcome to the home of the Super Bowl!"
On Tuesday, the 82,500-seat stadium in East Rutherford was selected to host the 2014 Super Bowl in a vote that will bring one of the world’s biggest and most lucrative sporting events to New Jersey. Concertgoers said the Super Bowl news made attending the New Meadowland’s inaugural concert even more historic.
"A lot of memories in the old stadium, but we are looking forward to many to come — especially the Super Bowl," said Brian Davis, 35, of Brick, one of the first to arrive.
Bon Jovi ran into a few opening day problems. A planned military fly over never happened. The stadium’s sound system also cut out for nearly a minute during "Runaway." The group kept playing as if nothing happened as one fan yelled "Sound check!" and the rest of the crowd attempted to make up for the missing music with their own voices.
The band ended its set with an elaborate fireworks display around 11 p.m., then returned to the stage for a series of encores. Around 11:30 p.m. the closed the show with "Wanted Dead or Alive" and "Livin' on a Prayer."
As they sang the final song, the band took advantage of the stadium's much-touted visual technology and played homemade videos of fans singing along to the song.
It was a long day for many fans who began rolling into the parking lots at 1:45 p.m. —six hours before the opening took the stage — to tailgate in the heat and humidity and say their last goodbyes to the old stadium.
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band closed down 33-year-old Giants Stadium in October, ending their show with an encore performance of "Jersey Girl." Bon Jovi, which had previously opened the Prudential Center in Newark in 2007, was chosen to give a repeat performance at the new football stadium.
Nicole Clements and her husband paid $175 each for their tickets to see Bon Jovi.
"A hometown boy opens the first show at the new stadium, how appropriate," said Clements, 38, of Cranbury.
Many ticket holders arrived early to check out every inch of the new stadium before Train, the opening act, took the stage shortly before 8 p.m. The gleaming new building includes 22 luxury suites, four giant video screens and 20 video pylons with high-definition screens. Fans were also happy to hear the new building has 40 percent more bathrooms than the old stadium.
John Stewart, who attended dozens of concerts and games at Giants Stadium, said he noticed fewer lines outside the rest rooms.
"In the old one, you had to race to these two rows of porta johns during the intermission," said Stewart, 47, of Miami. "Here it’s been easy."
But fans also found the new stadium is still a work in progress. Many features, including a 350,000-square-foot entertainment plaza outside the stadium, won’t open until football season begins. There were other opening day problems including ticket scanners that malfunctioned at the gates and food kiosks that delayed opening so workers could master the new equipment.
Many ticket holders also griped that their first memory of the new stadium will be the $25 parking fee they were charged as they pulled into the parking lot. Inside, they paid $4.75 for bottled water, $8.75 for beer and $15 for sandwiches.
"It’s a couple bucks more than I’m used to, but my beer was nice and cold," said David Arnett, 23, who flew in from Minnesota to be part of the stadium’s concert debut.
|Bon Jovi performs Blood on Blood at New Meadowlands Stadium|
|Bon Jovi performs We Weren’t Born to Follow at New Meadowlands Stadium|
|Bon Jovi performs You Give Love a Bad Name at New Meadowlands Stadium|
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Jon Bon Jovi says he's ready to rock New Meadowlands Stadium
NEW YORK — Jon Bon Jovi remembers watching football games in Giants Stadium as a kid, with his uncle.
He won’t be a spectator at the first musical event held at the New Meadowlands Stadium. But thousands of his biggest fans will.
Tonight, his band plays the first concert in the New Meadowlands. Images of the group will be all over the Stadium’s touted HD video system. Marine pilots in V-22 jets will do a flyover just before the group takes the stage. A live feed of the show will be sent to soldiers in Afghanistan. The sold-out house will be ready to shake.
It’s enough to make any performer crumble. Is Jon Bon Jovi — conqueror of a thousand stages — nervous?
The confident rocker insists he’s not worried about his performance.
“No, I worry about dumb stuff, like allergies,” said Bon Jovi, speaking to reporters yesterday at the Jumeirah Essex House on Central Park South. “I worry about sneezing. Can I breathe tonight? Did my mother get a good seat? Things like that.
“There’s nothing wrong with my (vocal) cords. We’re ready to go.”
|Bon Jovi performs in parking lot of the new Meadowlands Stadium|
The band’s close relationship with its home state has been well-chronicled. For many Jerseyans, catching a Bon Jovi show at the Meadowlands has become a summertime tradition, and part of our shared heritage. MTV recently joked that the band — which hails from Sayreville — ought to be given the naming rights to the new house.
Bon Jovi is in the middle of a stadium tour to support its latest album, “The Circle.” And tonight’s show — the first of four to be held at New Meadowlands Stadium this summer — might simply feel like “the next important one” to a group accustomed to playing shows of import.
Still, coming home presents its own peculiar challenges.
“It’s always exciting and a bit difficult to play at home,” says Bon Jovi. “Every cousin and relative and neighborhood friend is there.
“You always want to be at your best when you’re in your backyard.”
As for the historical importance of opening the new stage, the frontman is skeptical. While his memory of his first ‘89 gig at Giants Stadium is sharp (“I might not ever get back here,” he thought to himself, “so I’d better take a lot of pictures”) he reminds us that few recall who played the first concert there. He suggests that, 30 years from now, not many people will remember that Bon Jovi did the honors for New Meadowlands.
These days, the veteran performer is interested in a different kind of notability. In recent years, Jon Bon Jovi has been attempting to address the issue of homelessness through his Soul Foundation, which has now built affordable housing in seven cities. It “means the world” to him to know that David Axelrod, the president’s chief adviser and strategist, has posted the lyrics to “Work for the Working Man,” a populist stomper from “The Circle,“ in his White House office.
And while he’s preparing hard for tonight’s show, he’s plainly got his heart set on a future performance in the same venue — one that might take place during the halftime of the 2014 Super Bowl. But would Jon Bon Jovi really be willing to do a set in subzero temperatures?
He’d be delighted to.
“Our old manager used to say: ‘Bon Jovi will play anywhere, and bring their own electricity.’ I have played on a ski slope. It’s never too hot or too cold for us to play.”
Bon Jovi dismisses the notion that a cold-weather Super Bowl is intrinsically unfair.
“Football is meant to be played in the elements,” said the rocker — who was part-owner of the Philadelphia Soul arena football franchise.
Tonight, the most he’ll have to cope with is a passing thunderstorm. And a little rain isn’t likely to throw the band out of its rhythm.
“We’re not the new guys on the block,” says Bon Jovi. “Our legacy is important to us. We want to leave it timeless, and classic, and on point, and true to what we set out to do.”
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
On eve of first stadium show, Bon Jovi talks allergies, Super Bowl
NEW YORK — He tried out the word, letting it spill off his tongue, then immediately distanced himself from it. Nerves. No, not nerves. Jon Bon Jovi has headlined too many other shows, launched too many other venues, to let the opening of a $1.6 billion stadium spook him.
So on the eve of one of the biggest shows of his career, as he lifts the musical curtain on New Meadowlands Stadium, what does scare him?
"I worry about dumb stuff like allergies," the 48-year-old singer confessed during a roundtable with writers this afternoon at the Jumeriah Essex House in Manhattan. "Like going out there and sneezing. I never worry about singing or playing or the band’s performance, the production or anything like that. I’m more into, 'Can I breathe tonight?' 'Did my mother get a good seat?' The dumb stuff."
He will walk out on stage around 8:45 p.m. Wednesday, a Jersey artist unveiling what fans hope is a Jersey masterpiece. Even he is curious: As of this afternoon, Bon Jovi, guitarist Richie Sambora, drummer Tico Torres and keyboard player David Bryan had not rehearsed inside the new barn.
No worries, Bon Jovi said. He said he has been "singing like a bird," trying not to let his vocal cords get tangled in this stadium-opening hype.
"I’m not making a big deal out of that," he said. "Here’s a trivia question: Who was the first show in the old stadium?"
The Beach Boys, he was told.
"Thirty years from now I don't know if anyone’s going to remember who opened this place or not," he said. "I'm really not making that big a deal out of it. But as a football fan, I’m just as excited to go on that stage tomorrow and announce on that big microphone, 'We've got a Super Bowl.' That to me, now we're talking. That's exciting. That'll be exciting 'cause I’ll have the biggest microphone. That won’t be Woody (Jets owner Woody Johnson) or Mara (Giants co-owner John Mara). That'll be me."
Bon Jovi has played eight gigs inside the old building, which has been coming down piece by piece. The building still tugs on his heart strings. His uncle had season tickets to the Giants. Occasionally Bon Jovi and his father would get an invite.
Years later, he would step onto that field. No shoulder pads, no helmet, but still exciting.
"I do remember being in there the first time, in '89, and walking around and saying, 'I may never get back here again. I better take a lot of pictures,'" Bon Jovi said. "When you get to that place again, you have to say to yourself, 'I'm going to take a lot of pictures,' cause you never know when the ride’s going to end.
"You can’t psych yourself out either," he added. "It’s not game day here."
He said he has already penciled in songs for Wednesday’s set list, including a cover of "Hallelujah."
"I change eight or nine songs a night," Bon Jovi said. "So to be honest with you, not to BS anyone, I’ll pretty much have an A list tomorrow and then it will go from there. I pretty much know the 25 or 26 that will be set for tomorrow. And then they’ll fluctuate dramatically."
A safe bet for tomorrow’s first night in Jersey: "Who Says You Can’t Go Home."
It’s always exciting and difficult as well to play at home, because you’ve got every cousin and relative and neighborhood friend that’s there with you," Bon Jovi said. "You’re obviously wanting to be at your best when you’re in your backyard."
Don't miss Bon Jovi at the New Meadowlands Stadium on May 26, 27, 29 and July 9!
Great production seats have just been released for the May shows.
The amazing "The Circle World Tour" hits Bon Jovi's home state with the following special guests:
Wednesday, May 26 - Train
Thursday, May 27 - Gavin DeGraw
Saturday, May 29 - OneRepublic
Friday, July 9 - Kid Rock
Ticket Prices: $153, $99, $69, $39.50
(Ticket price includes $3 facility fee)
All acts, dates and ticket prices are subject to change without notice.
PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION TO VENUE
A special NJ Transit train car will be fully wrapped with Bon Jovi graphics in honor of the inagural concert series at the new venue. Visit njtransit for more details on convenient mass transit rail service to the concerts.
And here I thought they were all sold out...
Jon Bon Jovi - Bon Jovi Quits Smoking To Save Money
Rocker JON BON JOVI has given up cigarettes - because he refuses to pay the huge insurance premiums needed to cover a smoker.
The Livin' On A Prayer hitmaker picked up the habit while filming 1994 movie Moonlight and Valentino, but finally decided to turn his back on tobacco after trying to buy life insurance - and realising he was paying over-the-odds due to his love of cigarettes.
He tells Q magazine, "I swore off them before the tour and I'm happy to say that I haven't picked them up again.
"(I quit because of) the cold hard truth. I tried to get life insurance and the price with smoking was so ridiculous it was enough to p**s you off and just throw them in the garbage. So it was cold f**king turkey."
No matter why he did it, if this is for real, I'm glad he did. Now, if I could only get my hub to quit, all would be right in Queenie's world. At least for today anyway. :)
Monday, May 24, 2010
David Bryan Wins Drama Desk Award for Best Music for MEMPHIS!
David Bryan is this year's recipient of the 2010 Best Music Award for MEMPHIS.
David Bryan is a Grammy Award-winning keyboard player and founding member of Bon Jovi. Over the past 26 years, the band has sold more than 130 million records and toured the world, playing to millions of people. Their recent Lost Highway Tour was the #1-grossing tour in the world. David and Joe DiPietro have also co-written the award-winning musical The Toxic Avenger, currently playing at New World Stages. Among his work for charity, David is a national spokesperson for VH1's Save the Music Program.
MEMPHIS takes place in the smoky halls and underground clubs of the segregated 50's, a young white DJ named Huey Calhoun (Chad Kimball) fell in love with everything he shouldn't: rock and roll and an electrifying black singer (Montego Glover). MEMPHIS is an original story about the cultural revolution that erupted when his vision met her voice, and the music changed forever.
MEMPHIS features a brand new score with music by Bon Jovi's founding member/keyboardist David Bryan and lyrics by Bryan and Joe DiPietro (I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change), who also pens the musical's book. MEMPHIS is based on a concept by the late George W. George (producer of the Tony nominated Bedroom Farce and the film My Dinner With Andre), with direction by Tony nominee Christopher Ashley (Xanadu) and choreography by Sergio Trujillo (Jersey Boys).
MEMPHIS began previews on Wednesday, September 23rd at the Shubert Theatre following critically-acclaimed and sold-out engagements at La Jolla Playhouse and Seattle's 5th Avenue Theatre. The production opened to critical acclaim on Monday, October 19, 2009.
MEMPHIS stars Chad Kimball (Huey) and Montego Glover (Felicia) with Derrick Baskin (Gator), J. Bernard Calloway (Delray), James Monroe Iglehart (Bobby), Tony nominee Michael McGrath (Mr. Simmons), and Cass Morgan (Mama).
Tickets for MEMPHIS range from $41.50 to $126.50 (including a $1.50 facility fee). The performance schedule is as follows: Tuesday at 7pm, Wednesday - Saturday evenings at 8pm, Wednesdays and Saturdays at 2pm, and Sundays at 3pm. There will be special performance times during previews and holiday weeks. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.Telecharge.com, call 212.239.6200 or visit the Shubert Theatre Box Office (225 West 44th Street).
MEMPHIS is produced on Broadway by Junkyard Dog Productions, Barbara and Buddy Freitag and Kenny and Marleen Alhadeff with Latitude Link, Jim and Susan Blair, Demos Bizar Entertainment, Land Line Productions, Apples and Oranges Productions, Dave Copley, Dancap Productions, Inc., Alex and Katya Lukianov, Tony Ponturo, 2 Guys Productions, and Richard Winkler in association with Lauren Doll, Eric and Marci Gardiner, Linda and Bill Potter, Broadway Across America, Jocko Productions, Patty Baker, Dan Frishwasser, Bob Bartner/Scott and Kaylin Union, Loraine Boyle/Chase Mishkin, Remmel T. Dickinson/Memphis Orpheum Group and ShadowCatcher Entertainment/Vijay and Sita Vashee.
Sunday, May 23, 2010
New Meadowlands Stadium is ready to rock
You'll see the difference on your way to the gate.
The New Meadowlands Stadium aims to provide an immediate, immersion experience -- one meant to prepare concertgoers for the spectacle that awaits them onstage.
"Through video," says Ron VanDeVeen, senior vice president of events and guest experiences for the new facility, "the building will take on the personality of the event of that day."
Bands playing the New Meadowlands will still handle their own lights, their own mix and even their own stage setup. Depending on acoustics -- something we'll know more about after Bon Jovi opens the stadium on Wednesday -- the gleaming new house may sound similar to the scruffy-but-beloved old one.
But don't expect it to look the same.
"What's really different for us," says VanDeVeen, "is how we can enhance the visitor's experience with our video capability."
Twenty new video pylons will greet concertgoers with high-definition screens. These "HD pylons" -- which range in size from 20 by 40 feet to 20 by 60 feet -- will display large images related to the band about to take the stage.
WHAT ARE THE MUST SEE SHOWS AT THE NEW STADIUM?
The flexibility of the venue should help draw listeners into the concert, too. Bands and their touring crews will be able to transform the interior of the stadium to suit the needs of their performances. New Meadowlands recruits groups with ambitious production aesthetics (not to mention colossal fan bases), and VanDeVeen is confident that the venue can accommodate the demands of any touring act in the world.
Bon Jovi's elaborate load-in and set-up is expected to take six days. U2 will reprise the in-the-round show that drew a record crowd of 85,000 to old Giants Stadium in September. The four Irish rockers will be framed by a massive, multicolored claw, and will bask in the light of a mobile, cylindrical video screen.
Although some of the signature attractions promised by New Meadowlands -- such as the 350,000-square-foot entertainment plaza outside the stadium -- won't be open until the kickoff of the football season, summertime concertgoers will be able to gain access to the stadium's clubs and lounges.
"If you're in one of the seats affiliated with a club, if it's hot or cold or raining, you'll be able to get inside," says VanDeVeen.
The Touchdown Club and Gridiron Club have 3,500 seats each. The Coach's Club sells 2,200 seats. These clubs aren't full-service restaurants, but will sell snacks and drinks.
If all of this sounds a bit like construction on the New Meadowlands is still in progress -- and it will continue to be during the summer concert season -- consider that the old Giants Stadium hasn't been completely demolished yet. Its husk still squats in the lot, taking up space that could otherwise be devoted to parking.
So will driving to the Meadowlands concerts this summer be a challenge? VanDeVeen isn't worried.
He's got precedent to back him up. The soccer game between Mexico and Ecuador held at the New Meadowlands on May 7 -- which sold out the 75,000-seat stadium -- did not cause a parking cataclysm.
"We had a full house for Mexico-Ecuador, and we parked everybody on-site," says VanDeVeen. "We'll have no problem handling Bon Jovi."
Public transportation may be the most appealing way to get to the New Meadowlands Stadium.
A special-service train will stop at a new transit station located in front of the new stadium. Riders will be able to catch the train -- which will run only during events expected to draw more than 35,000 -- in Hoboken or at Secaucus Junction.
The train did not run during May's Bamboozle festival because attendance did not reach the threshold on either day, but direct rail service will be available during all of the planned summer concerts.
Most North Jersey rail lines stop at Secaucus Junction. For those coming from New York City, Metro North and Penn Station trains also make stops there.
Those determined to drive won't find their trips to the New Meadowlands appreciably different from those they might have taken to the old Giants Stadium. Parking areas can be accessed from the Turnpike (exit 16W), Route 3 or Paterson Plank Road. Drivers taking the Parkway North will still exit at 153A for Route 3. Those taking Parkway South will get off on exit 163 for Route 17, and will then follow 17 south to Paterson Plank.