Friday, April 27, 2012
From the Las Vegas Review-Journal:
Jon Bon Jovi headlining Tiger Jam benefit concert
Jon Bon Jovi makes us all feel better about ourselves.
And not in a reality TV way, which has become the prevailing modern day mood enhancer.
The reason people watch those shows is that viewing a parade of bickering, alligator-mouthed housewives, sunlight-starved pawnshop casualties and dead cat hoarders could boost the self-esteem of a puddle of Port-a-Jon discharge.
Goof on "Jersey Shore" all you want, but, hey, at least it's saved its fan base lots of money on lithium prescriptions.
Bon Jovi, he's from the Garden State, too. And he's been having the same ego-massaging affect on the masses for decades now in a much more genuine, edifying way than viewing a cavalcade of dunces demeaning themselves for modest Nielsen ratings and fame as short-lived as a fart in a wind storm.
Just think of some of the many radio staples the dude has penned over the years, a never-ending series of sonic high-fives sang in the key of awesome: "I'll Be There For You," "Keep the Faith," "Have a Nice Day" - the song titles alone convey a sense of encouragement and hang-in-there-my-man reassurance.
Basically, Bon Jovi's the human equivalent of one of those motivational posters that checker the office walls of high school guidance counselors; a Knute Rockne pregame pep talk outfitted with a guitar and some seriously kick-ass hair.
His songs make you feel like you can do the impossible, like run through brick walls, eat but one potato chip or discern the appeal of edible underwear.
"You better stand tall, when they're calling you out," he sings knowingly on "It's My Life," his words like Viagra for one's sense of self-worth. "Don't bend, don't break. Baby, don't back down."
Don't know about you, but we're ready to go neck punch a yeti right now, we're so freakin' pumped up.
Need a little more?
"Come on and get up off your knees," Bon Jovi exhorts on "We Weren't Born to Follow," dragging your sorry shell of misspent humanity up off the floor by the sheer Zeus-worthy might of his words. "When life is a bitter pill to swallow, you gotta hold on to what you believe. Believe that the sun will shine tomorrow."
Has your heart exploded like a zeppelin overinflated with hope and promise yet?
Seriously, Jon Bon Jovi brings the you-can-do-it uplift like Horatio Alger in form-fitting pantaloons.
The guy even has the Superman emblem emblazoned on one of his shoulders.
You might call it a tattoo.
We consider it a birthmark.
You may think we're laying it on a bit thick, but you don't have to think when it comes to the Bon Jovi catalog: It registers on a primal, gut level where busting out air guitar is an involuntary action, like the gag reflex when something touches the back of your tongue.
This goes a long way in explaining the guy's impressive longevity.
He's been cranking out the hits for three decades now, both as a solo artist and with the band that bears his surname, which is still a massive touring draw.
Last year, Bon Jovi earned $120 million on the road, second only to U2.
On Saturday, Jon Bon Jovi will step out for a solo date as the headliner of the latest Tiger Jam benefit concert.
As if the man needed to give back any more.
He's like a walking, rocking organ donor, only instead of doling out kidneys and livers, he gives you a reason for living.
"Take my hand and we'll make it I'll swear," Bon Jovi assures on "Livin' on a Prayer."
Not that prayers are necessary any longer - you have the songs of Jon Bon Jovi, consider them answered.