Together and with The Power of We, we can start a revolution. One Soul at a time... ~Jon Bon Jovi *** There's a Story on every street corner, my friend. All you have to do is open your eyes... ~Richie Sambora


Wednesday, November 18, 2015


Born in Overtown, Sam Moore went on to form the highly influential Sam & Dave.

UPDATE: The show's organizers have announced that Salute the Soul Man: A Benefit for Sam Moore has been postponed until Spring 2016. We'll update the story when a specific date is announced. 
Musical duo Sam & Dave, the effusive singers behind the timeless hit "Soul Man," may have come to define the sound of Memphis in the '60s. But Samuel David Moore was, in fact, born and raised right here, in Miami's historic — and at times troubled — Overtown.
It was here, in Overtown — at the time, a hotbed for local and national black music culture — where Moore made his reputation as a singer following his graduation from Booker T. Washington High School. And it was here, in Liberty City, where Moore met Georgia transplant Dave Prater, coming to Prater's rescue as the singer stumbled through a Jackie Wilson tune at a Moore-hosted open mike. The two would go on to form one of R&B's most successful partnerships.
Music was an integral part of the fabric of day-to-day life in Overtown, and it's that filter through which Moore recalls the community at the time. "It's much different today than it was back then," he says. "Back then, growing up and in the business, there was love, there was concentration, there was faith in one another. If you had any kind of talent, most of the time — most of the time, not all of the time, but most of the time — you would get a deal. There was always a togetherness. Everybody looked for the love and the music to put together."
Still, if regional success came quickly, it was years before Moore found national attention. "It took Sam & Dave, I would say, six or seven, maybe eight years," Moore recalls. "We weren't signed directly to Atlantic at first. We had different record companies locally. The records that we did record, they went as far as from Miami to maybe... Fort Lauderdale!"
He vividly recalls the night they caught their big break. "We were singing at this club, the King of Hearts in Miami, and these three guys showed up unannounced. It was [Atlantic Records execs] Jerry Wexler and Tom Dowd and Ahmet Ertegun. And they listened to us, and the next thing I knew, they had signed us. But hey, man, we were all over the place before we really got fixed into a record deal."
That deal eventually took Moore and Prater from South Florida to Memphis, Tennessee, where Atlantic had forged a partnership with Stax Records. It was a city that would become integral to the Sam & Dave mythos. But the move was hardly a smooth one for Moore. "I was almost [ready] to give up, to tell you the truth," he says.

Actually, I had given up when I first went to Memphis." It was a time of transition, and Moore was struggling to find his fit in the rapidly changing world. "Rock 'n' roll was still hanging around at that time. It was still that doo-wop. And then we got caught up into the Motown [sound]. When we transferred to Memphis, tears started coming down my face because I had my eyes set on [singing] songs like Jackie Wilson and the Coasters and people like that — Brook Benton and Ray Charles. Shows you how much I knew. Everything was just so, so screwed up. I just didn't see any way we were going to make it as whatever they were looking for in Sam & Dave."
Indeed, Moore remained dubious even when presented with the song that would one day grow to be his most iconic hit. "When they came out with 'Soul Man,' I didn't know. I just felt, Well, uh, OK? I didn't know it was going to be a hit. I really didn't. You see how everyone has jumped on the wagon behind that 'Soul Man' thing? Oh boy!"
Oh boy, indeed.
In addition to releasing the unstoppable "Soul Man," Sam & Dave would go on to issue a steady stream of era-defining songs in their Memphis years that set the mold for soul music as a genre, tracks like the horn-fueled "Hold On, I'm Comin'?" and the gospel-tinged lament "When Something Is Wrong With My Baby." When the dust cleared, Sam & Dave had released a hot streak of ten consecutive Top 20 R&B singles from 1965 to '68. Though success grew fleeting for the group in the '70s, leading to a rancorous split in 1981 (one that culminated in a legal tussle after Prater recruited a different "Sam" to tour under the Sam & Dave name), the duo's legacy has proven enduring: The act inspired Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi's signature Blues Brothers characters, and Sam & Dave were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1992. (It was a posthumous honor for Prater, who died in a car accident in 1988.)
This Saturday, Moore will return to his South Florida home to host Salute the Soul Man, a star-studded celebration of his six decades in the industry. The night's guest performers — Sting, Jon Bon Jovi, Don Henley, Michael McDonald, and many others — are a who's-who of rock icons, but more important to Moore, they're people he considers friends. "They're not trying to outshine anybody, get a record deal behind them. They're coming because, I would like to believe, they like me."
Moore recounts first meeting Bon Jovi (whom he calls "Johnny") and the rocker's then-girlfriend decades ago: "It was brought to my attention that she said to him: 'If you don't take me to see Sam & Dave, I'm not going to go out on those dates or marry you!' So he brought her to see Sam & Dave, and now they've been together 25 years. I think that's a pretty good start."
Proceeds from Salute the Soul Man will benefit Moore's own Soul, Arts & Music Foundation (SAM), a not-for-profit corporation tasked with two causes near and dear to Moore's heart: recovering rights for American legacy recording artists and, with the help of Florida International University, developing curricula and programs dedicated to preserving the history of American music in underfunded schools — beginning with those in his childhood home of Overtown. When it's suggested that the latter cause is a particularly noble one, Moore demurs. "I don't know if it's so noble. It's important and it's very special and, more than anything in the world, it is the right thing to do."
Now 80 years old, Moore has seen and done it all, yet his humble upbringing in Overtown remains at the core of his makeup. "I never relished being this big — a superstar and all this stuff," he protests. "As I do now, I favored the gospel side, the Christian side. But when I was just really pushed, pushed, pushed to concentrate on this — [soul] is what I came up with." And while popular music tastes have changed radically in his lifetime, soul endures, because as far as Moore is concerned, soul is something that transcends genre.
"Soul is when you can stand and the audience — the people who have paid to come to see you — they can feel you as what you are portraying on the stage, whether it's gospel or rock 'n' roll or rhythm and blues. They may not have come in there feeling one way or the other. But when they walk out, they feel much better than they did coming in. To me, my dear friend, that's soul."
Salute the Soul Man: A Benefit for the Soul, Music & Arts Foundation Hosted by Sam Moore. With Sting, Jon Bon Jovi, Michael McDonald, Randy Jackson, Don Henley, and others. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, November 21, at the Fillmore Miami Beach, 1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach; 305-673-7300; Tickets cost $150 to $500 plus fees via


Global Change Concert...

Friday, November 13, 2015

Jon Bon Jovi Joins Lineup Of Biggest Names In Music For Live Global Change Concert

Jon Bon Jovi

Jon Bon Jovi will perform alongside some of the biggest names in music in a concert to promote global change, headed up by former Vice-President of the United States, Al Gore.
Bon Jovi will join Elton John, Pharrell Williams, Hozier, Neil Young, Fall Out Boy, Vance Joy, Walk the Moon, 30 Seconds to Mars, Ryan Reynolds, Ed Begley Jr., world leaders and more in Al Gore's  24-hour telethon on climate change called "24 Hours of Reality and Live Earth: The Word is Watching."
The event was scheduled in advance of the upcoming November 30 United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Paris, can be lived streamed at on Friday, Nov. 13 and Saturday, Nov. 14, beginning at 12 p.m. EST.
Jon Bon Jovi's performance was taped prior to the event.
Al Gore will host the broadcast from a studio at the foot of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, where Duran Duran will perform live.
The event "is about making sure the people of the world are informed and engaged so that they can make their voices heard in their capitals and at the negotiating table in Paris," said Gore in a statement on the site
"The UN climate talks can be a breakthrough moment to change the dangerous course we've set for our planet. We want the world's leaders to know the world is watching, and its time for them to act," he revealed.
Jon Bon Jovi is a longtime friend of the former Vice-President.
Bon Jovi is a sustained supporter of the Democratic Party. He campaigned for Al Gore in 2000, for John Kerry in 2004 and both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in 2008.
He's given over $35,000 to the Democratic Party since 1994 and in 2008 Bon Jovi hosted a private dinner at his Middletown, New Jersey mansion where he charged $30,800 a plate to be donated to the Obama campaign and the Democratic National Convention, according to
Jon Bon Jovi is currently working on a new album with Bon Jovi to be released in 2016. It will be the first complete band album without longtime guitarist Richie Sambora.


Friday Funnies...

Where it all started...


New Music...

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Bon Jovi New Album Arriving In 2016; Listen To Matt O'Ree Play 'Living On A Prayer' With David Bryan!

Bon Jovi New Album

As fans patiently wait for Bon Jovi new album coming in 2016, take some time to know more about the newest guitarist onboard, Matt O'Ree.

According to Noise 11, Matt O'Ree will officially take the place of touring guitarist Bobby Bandiera. Moreover, O'Ree will go side by side with Phil X as he remains as the other band guitarist.

It will be interesting to see if both guitarists will be part of the Bon Jovi new album 2016 but nonetheless, fans will still have a great time when the band goes on tour. Here's a teaser showing Matt O'Ree performing with David Bryan to the band's hit, "Living On A Prayer."

Also, here's a brief background of Matt O'Ree.
"Matt O'Ree formed his own band The Matt O'Ree Band in New Jersey in 1994. Like Sambora, O'Ree is a bluesman at heart, citing Albert King, Howlin' Wolf, Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan as his influences."
To sweeten things up, David Bryan confirmed that he and the band will go on tour once Bon Jovi new album is released next year.
"We always do album/tour. We put out an album ['What About Now'] in 2013 and toured all 2013 - 102 shows to 3 million people." Bryan told "We're back in the studio and we'll have an album out next year. That's our cycle."
Speaking of another album, "Burning Bridges" is now out and this album contains the angst the band feels toward their former label, Mercury Records.
For those who have yet to listen to the Bon Jovi new album, "Burning Bridges," here's the track list via Ultimate Classic Rock.
"We Don't Run"
"Saturday Night Gave Me Sunday Morning"
"Mona Lisa"
"Who Says You Can't Go Home" (feat. Keith Urban)
"This Ain't Love"
"State of Our Union"
"Times Like These"
"Beautiful Day"
"Start Your Own Revolution"
"This Is Our House"
"I'm Giving Me to You"
"I'm On My Way"
"Second Chances"
"The Ghost of a Good Thing"


Second Hope Concert Added...

Exclusive: Count Basie announces second Hope Concert

Yep, they're doing two in one night...


This holiday season, get ready for twice the Hope in Red Bank.

The Count Basie Theatre exclusively announced to the Asbury Park Press Wednesday morning that it will host "... And Even More HOPE," an encore staging of this year's hotly anticipated Hope Concert 8, at 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 23.

Presented by Jersey Shore guitar hero Bobby Bandiera and Friends, the concert will feature Jon Bon Jovi, Southside Johnny Lyon, Gary U.S. Bonds and John Cafferty. Funds raised by the concert will support Mary's Place by the Sea in the Ocean Grove section of Neptune, which works to support women during and after cancer treatment.

Jon Bon Jovi performs with Bobby Bandiera during the

Tickets, which range from $50 to $500, go on sale at noon on Friday through, 732-842-9000 or at the Basie box office, 99 Monmouth St., Red Bank.

With a previously-announced 7 p.m. show benefiting the Visiting Nurse Association Health Group, 180 Turning Lives Around and the Basie's Arts for All initiative in the Red Bank Borough Middle School, 2015 marks the first year that two Hope Concerts have been performed on the same evening.

All told, the Hope Concerts have raised almost $3 million for local charities since 2003.


Veteran's Day

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

War really is a stupid game and we could use a whole hell of a lot more peace.

Thank you to all who have served and continue to serve our country.  Without you, I wouldn't be able to do what I do.


Sam Moore Tribute

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Bon Jovi to join stars in Sam Moore tribute concert


Jon Bon Jovi and Sam Moore are no strangers.

Bon Jovi dueted with Moore on the track "Lookin' for a Love" from Moore's 2006 album," Overnight Sensational," and the two performed on stage together during The Apollo In The Hamptons benefit in East Hampton for the Apollo Theater of Harlem in 2010.

Now, Bon Jovi will perform at the "Salute to the Soul Man" concert, Friday, Nov. 21 at the Fillmore at the Jackie Gleason Theater in Miami. Sting, Don Henley, Randy Jackson, Michael McDonald Sarah Dash and a few more surprise guests will also be on stage in an evening that celebrates Moore's 80th birthday. The concert will raise funds for the SAM Foundation – which stands Soul Arts and Music Foundation and seeks to keep music teaching in schools.

Tickets are $153.75 through $603.75 and are on sale now through

Moore, a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, is one half of the legendary duo Sam and Dave whose hits included "Hold On, I'm Comin'," "I Thank You," "When Something Is Wrong With My Baby" and "Soul Man."

Jon Bon Jovi, Southside Johnny Lyon, Gary U.S. Bonds and John Cafferty were just announced as performers in the Bobby Bandiera and Friends Hope Concert 8, a fundraiser for Jersey Shore charities to be held Wednesday, Dec. 23, at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank.


Hope Concert 8

Monday, November 9, 2015

Bon Jovi, Southside added to Bandiera's Hope Concert

Where there are friends, there is Hope.

The lineup for the Bobby Bandiera and Friends Hope Concert 8, a fundraiser for Jersey Shore charities to be held Wednesday, Dec. 23, at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, has been announced and you might recognize a few of the names: Jon Bon Jovi, Southside Johnny Lyon, Gary U.S. Bonds and John Cafferty.

Bon Jovi, who has a home in Middletown, frequently appears at Bandiera's Hope Concerts and did so last year by singing "Who Says You Can't Go Home," "I Wish Everyday Could Be Like Christmas" and "The Letter," as a tribute to Joe Cocker, who had just passed away.

Bandiera has played in Bon Jovi and Jon Bon Jovi's side band, the Kings of Suburbia. Bandiera is also a former member of Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes.

The concert will benefit 180 Turning Lives Around, a private, nonprofit charitable organization dedicated to ending domestic and sexual violence in the local community, and the Visiting Nurse Association Health Group, New Jersey’s largest nonprofit visiting nurse association and visiting physician service.

Bobby Bandiera and Jon Bon Jovi at last year's Hope Concert in Red Bank. (Photo: Noah K. Murray)

Also, $10 from every ticket sold will go toward Red Bank Middle School’s new artist initiative in collaboration with the Basie, which works to bring the arts to every child.

"It brings the arts into the core curriculum," said Jon Vena, director of marketing and public relations for the Basie. "There are studies left and right that says the arts can accentuate the learning of other subjects."

Tickets for Hope Concert 8 range from $50 to $500, and are on sale now through, by calling 732-842-9000 or by visiting the Basie box office, 99 Monmouth Street.


Love This...

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

It has nothing to do with Bon Jovi and everything to do with my love for Josh Groban and the Phantom of the Opera.

Chills I tell gave me chills!


Friday Funnies...

Friday, October 30, 2015

Happy Halloween!!!


Jon Bon, Philanthropist Today...

Friday, October 23, 2015

Found this in my inbox today...Jon and his wife are to be commended for all they have done and continue to do to help those that struggle everyday to put food on their table...


Friday Funny...

Friday, October 9, 2015

It's been a while...


Throwback Thursday...

Thursday, October 8, 2015

It's been a while and I'm in the mood for a little old-timey stuff today.  Who's with me?

And a video that has always been a favorite of mine...


Review: Bon Jovi in Abu Dhabi October 1, 2015

Friday, October 2, 2015

Review: Bon Jovi fails to hit the high notes at Abu Dhabi concert

Review: Bon Jovi fails to hit the high notes at Abu Dhabi concert

ABU DHABI // It’s probably safe to say this won’t go down as a vintage Bon Jovi tour.
The band’s first outing to begin without longterm guitarist Richie Sambora – a low-pressure 12-city jaunt around Asia – was already struck by calamity, with three shows cancelled due to government intervention (in China) and a typhoon (in Taiwan). Arriving in Abu Dhabi for the penultimate night on Thursday, one felt a certain sense of hang-on-and-hope in the air.
The little-known That’s What the Water Made Me marked an underwhelming entrance. Quickly followed by 1980s hair-metal anthemsYou Give Love a Bad NameRaise Your Hands and Born to Be My Baby, the cracks were soon evident for all to see and hear – Jon was noticeably struggling to hit the high parts of these heyday classics. Was it a bad night, or are his 53 years starting to show? The way the frontman artfully rephrased, re-pitched, or left the rest of the band to fill the blanks suggests this isn’t the first time.
Ironically duller, newer material like Who Says You Can’t Go Home andLost Highway worked far better, pitched in keys that suit Jon’s latter-day vocal style.
There’s no escaping the missing void where Sambora once stood. Replacement session player Phil X does a fine job of copping the second vocal part in Wanted Dead or Alive, but there’s key, iconic solo work he can’t/won’t play.
A band known for their ballads (Bed of RosesAlways et al), there was a sad lack displayed Thursday night – because, one imagines, Jon’s vocal frailties may be exposed.
One plodding new song is titled Because We Can – but sadly it’s not clear if this is the case, anymore.
Perhaps the most affecting moment is a fresh acoustic band rendition of Someday I’ll Be Saturday Night.
Other highlights include retro rocker I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead and a rousing Keep The Faith.
During Have A Nice Day I overheard one punter attempting to sing the chorus to It’s My Life, a song already performed that evening – let’s face it, they’re much of a muchness.
Following the inevitable Livin’ on a Prayer, the lights went up after little more than two hours. Writing about the band, I’ve used a fast food analogy before – much like a burger binge, a Bon Jovi gig satisfyingly hits the spot, but leaves you feeling slightly guilty and nauseous afterwards.
What next?
In contrast to November’s upcoming Mötley Crüe show, there was a distinct lack of any pyrotechnics or effects. Back to basics works – but when the support band, the UAE’s promising Carl & the Reda Mafia, have more multimedia than the headliner, you have to wonder if this is Budget Bon Jovi (although it was nice to see Jon drinking Al Ain water onstage – no diva here).
When, earlier on, Jon announced new single We Don’t Run, not a soul applauded. It was the only cut to appear from 2015’s Burning Bridges, a “contractual obligation” release which severs ties with Mercury, the band’s record label of more than three-decades.
Which really raises the question – what happens next?
Without Sambora, the pretence of Bon Jovi the Band has been crushed – the other three were reportedly “paid employees” of their namesake all along.
But as most fans still think it’s a “he” not a “they” anyway, why not cut loose with another solo album, add the name “Jon” to the ticket stub, and loose a few of those embarrassing falsettos along the way?


All For One, One For All...

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Everyone does their best for a great show, says Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres

Everyone does their best for a great show, says Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres

They band is named after the lead singer, but stadium rockers Bon Jovi are no solo act.
Drummer Tico Torres and keyboardist David Bryan have been part of the group since its inception in 1983. They say they never felt overshadowed by their charismatic frontman.
“Bon Jovi has always felt like a band to me,” Torres says. “Jon is the frontman and he is absolutely great at doing that, but that never took away from the fact that it is a band.”
Bryan concurs, stating the live shows are the best illustration of the group’s dynamics.
“Once you see us on the stage then you will know what we are about,” he says. “It’s definitely a group effort and everybody does their best to deliver a great show for the fans.”
Torres says there is a definite sense of renewal within the band. Speaking before a recent show in Malaysia, he says Bon Jovi are enjoying their live return after a two-year break. “In a way it does feel like the first day of school,” he says with a laugh. “But this is where we are best, out there with the fans. It never gets old.” Bryan also credits the renewed vigour to new band member Phil X. After fellow original member and lead guitarist Richie Sambora left the group in 2014, X took over and made such an impression that he was enlisted as an official member last month.
However, that doesn’t mean the band doesn’t miss Sambora. Bryan credits the flamboyant axeman for taking the hard step of entering rehab to battle substance abuse.
“You know, drug addiction is a very tough thing,” he says. “All we can do is just wish him all the best.”
Torres says Bon Jovi plan to hit the studio immediately after this mini Asian and Middle East tour. While acknowledging the new album Burning Bridgesis a bit of a stopgap record in that it consists of previously unfinished songs, Torres says it served its purpose in getting the band back on the road.
“There is plenty more music to come,” he says. “But for now this is an album that we want to be for the fans. It gave us a chance to come and return to Abu Dhabi – it’s really for you guys.”

Q Note:  I highlighted the once sentence that really bothered me in this article.  After one tour, they made Phil X an official member of the band?   To my knowledge they haven't made Huey an official member, have they?    


Jon Bon's Giants Secret...

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Jon Bon Jovi's secret life on the NFL sidelines

Bon Jovi signingWe know that Jon Bon Jovi is a big football fan. He's friends with a few NFL owners and coaches, his son plays for Notre Dame and he tried to buy the Buffalo Bills last year.

But what is not widely known is that Bon Jovi was a regular on the sidelines of New York Giants games during their 1990 championship season. His exploits as a pseudo photojournalist and Giants fanboy were recently detailed on

Early in the 1990 season, he met Giants punter Sean Landeta in a New York City nightclub and the two concocted a plan to get Bon Jovi on the sidelines during a game against the Dallas Cowboys as a photographer. Bon Jovi wore a camera around his neck, sunglasses and stuffed his hair up under his hat, but his true identity was almost revealed.

“One cheerleader looked at me kind of funny and then was staring at Jon,” said veteran photographer Mike Malarkey, who was in on the plan, according to “And he ran real quick to get some water or Gatorade or something, and she’s staring at me and she said, ‘I know that guy.’ And she was staring at his arm and she saw the Superman tattoo and was kind of catching on."

Malarkey asked the cheerleader not to tell anyone Bon Jovi was on the sidelines.

“When he came back, she was just staring at him and you could tell she was kind of excited. But she kept it a secret," Malarskey said. "That was the only person that caught on as well. Even in the photographers’ room and during halftime, no one had a clue.”

Bon Jovi would attend games during the 1990 season as his schedule allowed. He was in the cross-hairs of coach Bill Parcells at one point.

“I was yelled at by Parcells early on in the relationship,” Bon Jovi said. “But here was the difference-maker: there were rap stars who will go unnamed that were very flamboyant on the sideline at certain NFL games. Parcells yelled at me, and as soon as he yelled at me, I thought, ‘Oh, that’s funny. He’s my Pop Warner coach. I’ve been getting yelled at like this my whole career.’ But it’s: ‘act like a man, put the hair (up)’ and you were looking like an assistant, not a rock star getting on a motorcycle. So because of that, the photographers did the same kind of thing, and that’s how I was able to make friendships. It wasn’t about me. It was about the game.”
The Giants were rolling in 1990 and won their first 11 games en route ot the playoffs. When the team went down to Tampa Bay to play in Super Bowl XXV against the Buffalo Bills, the players found a gift from the rocker in their locker room stalls: a T-shirt with the words “Show No Mercy" written on the front with Giants and Bon Jovi logos on the sleeves.

"We’re all wearing (his) shirt underneath our jerseys,” Landeta said in the article. “I don’t know if you believe in things like that or whatever, but it was a little spark, you know what I’m saying? You say to yourself, ‘Wow, look what he did for us, how he feels about us, how he wants to be a part of this.’”

Bon Jovi was kicked off the field at the beginning the Super Bowl, which featured another Jersey superstar, Whitney Houston, performing the National Anthem in early 1991.

"Security came and they took me off,” Bon Jovi said according to “And Phil Simms said, ‘He has the same pass as I do. He is with us.’ And they said, ‘This is a different story.’ This is the Gulf War. They said, ‘You gotta go.’ And they sent me up to a box.”

Bon Jovi was later asked to come down to the field.

"They’re trotting out to kick the game-winning field goal and I feel a tap,” said Landeta, referring to the game ending field goal attempt by the Bills, which failed. “I turn to my left, and there [(Bon Jovi) is. I’m like, ‘Where have you been? I’ve been looking all over for you … All right, whatever, let’s watch this.’ So we stood there and watched him line up and kick that ball. Fortunately, it sailed a little to the right.”

The Giants won 20-19. Bon Jovi ran out onto the field with the team.

"When the kick went wide, we ran out on the turf, and to have been allowed to do that -- I tried to buy the Buffalo Bills last year. None of this would have happened had it not been for meeting Sean Landeta, when he introduced me to all those people who then I’ve become such good friends with," Bon Jovi said. "Everybody took a knee (after the game). Mr. Young (the general manager of the Giants, George Young) said come on into that dressing room. Before they closed the doors, before anybody got in, when they took a knee, I was there! That was crazy ridiculous for a singer for a rock band from New Jersey."


Review: Bon Jovi Rocks South Korea

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

20 years on, Bon Jovi rocks Korean fans again

Age is truly an issue of mind over matter for U.S. rock band Bon Jovi.

Front man Jon Bon Jovi's hair might have gone from long and blonde to thick, short and silver over the 20 years since he last appeared in Korea, but his explosive energy and scintillating smile remained untouched, and all the members of the band seemed genuinely glad to see their fans here for the first time in two decades.

The "Bugs Super Sound Live ― Bon Jovi Live in Seoul" concert at the Jamsil Sports Complex Tuesday was a part of the band's 2015 promotional tour for their latest album "Burning Bridges," released on Aug. 21. Though the band was coming off an intense gig in Singapore four days before, they had no trouble turning the concert venue into a rock festival of sorts, complete with beer kegs, a euphoric crowd and raging music by one of the world's best-selling rock bands.

The 23-song set Bon Jovi handed out was a patchwork of now and then.

The band opened with "That's What the Water Made Me," off their 12th studio album "What About Now," and followed with hits including "You Give Love a Bad Name," "Born to Be My Baby," "Raise Your Hands" and "Runaway." Next up was a piece from their newest album, "We Don't Run," which came before a restrained version of "Someday I'll Be Saturday Night," featuring Jon Bon Jovi in a snug, black shirt and leather pants, center stage with just his guitar.

Though the lead vocalist, now 53, broke on some of his higher notes, he squeezed out as much as he could and worked the stage with ease and force, to which the audience responded with heightened enthusiasm.

The concert peaked with the band's smash hit "It's My Life," before closing with "Captain Crash and the Beauty Queen from Mars," "Keep the Faith" and "Bad Medicine."

"His voice wasn't in the best of condition, but that doesn't matter to fans," said Joo Seung-woo, 34. "It was the best concert I've been to in years."

Some 14,000 fans of all ages were in attendance. During "Wanted Dead or Alive," Jon Bon Jovi stopped singing to let the audience take over. Then, during "Keep the Faith," he jumped into the stands to take a banner from a fan that had the song's title scribbled on it, and waved it at the crowd. Fans roared even louder and the band repeatedly thanked them for coming out.

As the show appeared to draw to a close, Bon Jovi had three encores ready, but when the audience wouldn't let the band go, it returned for four more. The final number, "Always," was a pleasant surprise, being a song the band doesn't often perform live.

The band didn't say much throughout the 150-minute long rock rumble, but the intensity with which it took to its performances and the smile that never left Jon Bon Jovi's face were enough to move fans.

Bon Jovi is an American rock band formed in New Jersey in 1983. Its members consist of namesake Jon Bon Jovi, pianist and keyboard player David Bryan and drummer Tico Torres. Phil X filled in for guitarist Richie Sambora, who left the band in 2013. The band has released 12 studio albums, two compilations and two live albums, and has sold more than 100 million records worldwide and performed more than 2,700 concerts in more than 50 countries.


Review: Bon Jovi Rocks Singapore September 20, 2015

Monday, September 21, 2015

Bon Jovi rocks Singapore, 20 years on

Jon Bon Jovi's hair might have gone from blonde to grey, but his band is still a rock 'n' roll force to be reckoned with.
Just ask the fans who showed up to support Bon Jovi last night at the 2015 Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix, closing the F1 weekend with a bang. Organisers estimated the crowd to be up to 60,000 strong.
Bon Jovi last played in Singapore at the Indoor Stadium in 1995, and fans have clearly missed them in the 20 years since. No matter that the original band members are now in their 50s and 60s.
"I missed seeing Bon Jovi when they last came here, as I was still in school and had no money for tickets," said hotel manager Christy Guna Desa, 37. "So I'm very excited to see them this time, it's a dream come true. I actually sang You Give Love A Bad Name to my girlfriend when I was 14."
Bon Jovi's Singapore gig was part of the Asian leg of their 2015 tour to promote their latest album Burning Bridges, which was released on Aug 21.
"We came a long way here for one reason, and one reason only," lead singer Jon Bon Jovi, 53, told the ecstatic crowd. "To hear you scream!"
Bon Jovi's concert kicked off at the Padang Stage at 10.30pm, with a set lasting around 90 minutes.
As expected, they played their newest songs from their 2015 album Burning Bridges, We Don't Run and Someday I'll Be Saturday Night.
Though the crowd grooved gamely to the new material, the biggest cheers were saved for stadium rock favourites like You Give Love a Bad Name, and It's My Life.
Founding members Jon Bon Jovi, keyboardist David Bryan, and drummer Tico Torres were still on hand to deliver electrifying rock music. Bassist Hugh McDonald, lead guitarist Phil X and rhythm guitarist Matt O'Ree completed the line-up, sans former star guitarist and co-songwriter Ricky Sambora. Sambora left the band in 2013.
Still, Phil X proved he was more than up to the task, delivering a blistering guitar solo for classic cowboy tune Wanted Dead Or Alive.
It was a solo that almost didn't happen due to a technical problem.
"Far too famous a guitar solo to play on a broken amplifier," Jon Bon Jovi told the crowd, pausing the song so the error could be fixed.
"The guitar tech's going to have a long walk home to America," the lead singer joked.
Bon Jovi roused the crowd a final time with encore songs Runaway, Have A Nice Day and Livin' On A Prayer.
The Singapore Grand Prix organisers certainly saved the best for last: Friday and Saturday headliners Pharrell Williams and Maroon 5are supremely talented, but Bon Jovi are bona fide rock legends after over 30 years in the business.
And like fine wine, Bon Jovi keep getting better with age.

And here are just a few pictures...


Malaysians Rock...

Friday, September 18, 2015

Jon Bon Jovi: “Malaysians know how to rock!”

KUALA LUMPUR: More than a month ago, rock singer Jon Bon Jovi performed a cover of Teresa Teng's classic Mandarin hit Tian Mi Mi, and the video of his performance went viral on social media. 

Unfortunately, it isn't one of the songs the American legendary band would be performing at its upcoming concert here on Saturday at Stadium Merdeka. 

"Not a chance. That was one time. One line at a time," the singer said with an embarrassed smile when met at the concert's press conference at Shangri-La Hotel here yesterday. "I'm like a parrot. You can teach me, but you got to teach me slowly." 

It was his sister-in-law, Nina Yang Bongiovi, who suggested to make the cover. 

"I did my best. I was intimidated at first, because it's a language I don't speak. "I told her I would but only if she taught me how." 

At the concert, the band will be performing both old and new songs from its body of work that covers 32 years of its career. 

"Some of the songs were written way before some of you were even born. Others are current, like from our latest album Burning Bridges, which is like a fan record we put out for the series of concerts we're doing now," Jon said. 

The group last performed here 20 years ago in 1995, to a crowd who knew how to rock. Drummer Tico Torres said: "Like at every concert, we expect you to sing along with us, because we appreciate audience's participation." 

"Sorry it took us 20 years to come back, but we're here now. We appreciate all of your love and support. We look forward to a great night. "We're also glad that the rain came and cleared the skies. I heard that the air quality here wasn't very good," he added. 

He added that Bon Jovi has a catalogue of music that generations are familiar with. The band has held several concerts as part of this tour prior to coming to Malaysia. 

"So far the reception has been great, and things keep getting better every day," Jon said. 

Bon Jovi Live in Kuala Lumpur 2015 is organised by IMC Live.



China Shows A No-Go

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Bon Jovi China Tour: Shot Through the Heart

This Romeo is bleeding, but you can’t see his blood.
Jon Bon Jovi – who recently made his Mandarin-singing debut in an online video — was slated to perform in mainland China for the first time next week with his eponymous band, much to the anticipation of certain members of the China Real Time team. But a ticket-selling platform halted sales for the tour’s Beijing and Shanghai stops on Tuesday without warning. That was followed by an early-morning statement by the promoter confirming the concerts were cancelled.
The reasons weren’t immediately clear.
“We regret to announce that Bon Jovi’s 2015 concerts planned for September 14 at Shanghai’s Mercedes-Benz Cultural Center and September 17 at Beijing’s MasterCard Center have been cancelled due to some reasons,” read a statement posted by promoter AEG China on its official Weibo microblog early Wednesday.
“We will issue refunds to all fans who have purchased tickets. A formal statement and details on the refunds will be released later today. We deeply apologize for any inconvenience and disappointment,” it added.
The Beijing and Shanghai tour dates had been removed from Bon Jovi’s website Wednesday morning.
The seller, online ticket platform, initially told worried commenters on its website Tuesday that the tickets were on hold temporarily and urged patience, saying more details would be coming shortly. On Wednesday, it responded to disappointed fans that “the reason for the cancellation isn’t clear yet.” The website was still promoting the Bon Jovi tour on its homepage, however.
China’s Ministry of Culture, which oversees foreign musical acts in China, didn’t immediately respond to a faxed request for comment on whether Bon Jovi’s shows were still on. A spokeswoman for concert promoter AEG said the company didn’t yet have any confirmed information.
The confusion follows a string of cancellations by authorities of performances by Westerners at the 11th hour, leading to speculation online that the New Jersey rocker was the latest casualty.
Earlier this summer, when U.S. band Maroon 5 dropped a Shanghai concertfrom its tour without explanation, fans surmised that the reason was a tweet by the band’s keyboardist, Jesse Carmichael, linking to a photo of an event he attended to celebrate the Dalai Lama’s 80th birthday. Beijing condemns the Dalai Lama as a separatist, while the exiled spiritual leader maintains that he seeks only greater autonomy for Tibet.
Similar moves have led to the axing of performances by other groups, including Linkin Park in 2011. The band played in China earlier this year without incident.
The reasons for cancellations aren’t always clear-cut. British pop group Oasis said in 2009 that authorities had scrapped its China tour due to singer Noel Gallagher’s participation in a Free Tibet concert more than a decade earlier. A Chinese cultural official blamed the cancellation on the concert promoter’s financial problems.
In online discussions, some Chinese music-industry watchers speculated that the latest cancellation was linked to unspecified recent comments by Mr. Bon Jovi on the spiritual leader. Others pointed to a 2010 Bon Jovi concert in Washington, D.C., which included a video of figures including Oprah Winfrey and the Dalai Lama.
China Real Time wasn’t able to track down any photos of Mr. Bon Jovi and the Dalai Lama together.
Damai’s website and China’s Weibo microblogs were inundated with messages from angry fans who demanded a response to the rumors swirling around the show.
“Bon Jovi’s concert got canceled?” wrote one Weibo user. “Give me an explanation! I wanted to celebrate my birthday in a luxurious way, but now it’s all gone!”


The Times They Are A-Changin'...

Monday, August 24, 2015

Bon Jovi Leaves Label After 32 Years; Here's What Jon Bon Jovi Should Do Next

In what was one of the longest label marriages in music history, Bon Jovi and Mercury Records have parted ways. This makes Bon Jovi the biggest band—they were No. 4 on Forbes 2014 list of The World’s Highest-Paid Musicians— to be a free agent.

Billboard broke the news earlier today that the group, which was on the label for 32 years, said goodbye and it sounds like it was not without some acrimony on band namesake Jon Bon Jovi’s part.
On Burning Bridges, an album the band released yesterday, the title track contains the following lyrics: “After 30 years of loyalty/they let you dig the grave/now maybe you can learn to sing or strum along/Well I’ll give you half the publishing/You’re why I wrote this song.”  Bon Jovi told Billboard, “This hits it right in the head and tells you what happened. Listen to the lyrics because it explains exactly what happened. And that’s that.” (Bon Jovi has referred to the project as a “fan album,” since it contains primarily previously unreleased material, as well as radio single, “We Don’t Run,” which is one of the few tracks written expressly for the project.)
To be sure, Bon Jovi had been on Mercury for the duration of its major label career, but that doesn’t mean there had been any consistency in those 32 years as Mercury changed hands and the band toiled under a staggering number of different label chiefs.
I interviewed Jon Bon Jovi for the first time in 1992 and through the years, he’s consistently been one of the smartest, shrewdest businessmen, not just musician, out there. The band has good managers, but Jon (I’m breaking journalistic form and using his first name just for the sake of being able to tell him and the band Bon Jovi apart) always had a firm hand on the decisions and was well versed in label politics (and sports–he led a Toronto group that made a losing bid for the Buffalo Bills last year). I remember an interview several years ago where he counted how many different label heads the band had recorded under and he seemed tired of having to break them in. After all, this was a band that made Mercury millions of dollars, especially from the mid-80s to the mid-90s when it released albums Slippery When Wet, New Jersey, and Keep the Faith. Worldwide, the band has sold more than 100 million albums.
The band, which split with founding guitarist Richie Sambora in 2013, is set to tour Southeast Asia starting Sept. 11 in Jakarta  and then will have more music and more touring in 2016.
So what should Bon Jovi do next ? Not sign with another long term label contract for one thing. Even if the band’s album sales aren’t what they once were, Bon Jovi remains one of the biggest touring acts in the world. In 2013, the group had the top grossing tour of the year, bringing in $259.5 million and beating the likes of Beyonce, Bruce Springsteen,Taylor Swift and Elton John, according to  Pollstar. They dropped to No. 23 last year, but that was because they only played nine shows,according to Billboard. They are, like the Rolling Stones, U2, Paul McCartney and Swift, able to fill venues in all corners of the world and there aren’t many other acts that have that kind of global stature.
Like many acts, Bon Jovi makes the majority of its money on the road. And while there’s no doubt that Jon wants more radio success- you don’t get to be at his level without being very competitive— the band’s last song to chart in the Top 40 of Billboard’s Hot 100 was “(You Want To) Make A Memory,” which peaked at No. 27 in 2007. The only reason an act with this kind of history and worldwide recognition needs to be on a major record company is to to take advantage of a label’s promotion staff, but that hasn’t been happening for the band so Bon Jovi should self-release their albums. Sure, the album sales may dwindle without the major marketing machinery behind them, but Bon Jovi will keep a much bigger percentage of each record sold and the band can hire an indie promo team to work tunes to radio.  Plus, the band reportedly signed with Irving Azoff for management in April and , as mega-manager Azoff has proved with The Eagles, he knows how to keep the money pouring in for his acts.  They would be foolish to sign with another label when, at this point, Jon has forgotten more about how the music industry works than most label heads will ever know, so he doesn’t need any more of their bad medicine.
We’ve reached out to the head of Mercury and will update if we get a response.


Queenie's Loyal Subjects

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I am and always have been a Bon Jovi fan. This blog is just my obsession taken a step further, my imagination in high gear if you will. I love to read and decided to see what would happen when I took that love of the written word and ramped it up a bit.

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