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On stage: Bon Jovi

- Bon Jovi, Billy Idol & Little Angels - Aug. 1993 - Koblenz (D) -
- Bon Jovi - June 2008 - Manchester (GB) -

Bon Jovi
- June, 22nd 2008 - Manchester (GB), City of Manchester Stadium -

Having seen Bon Jovi only once back in 2001 – he tours the USA and South America but skips Mexico, damn it!– I resolved to catch him this year in the opposite side of the Atlantic. I moved to Ireland months before they hit the road, so I just waited confidently.
Am I cursed? Guess what European country Bon Jovi did not visit now? Exactly! No dates scheduled for Ireland! Astonished, I later found that every show in the UK was sold out! Well, almost every show: I was lucky enough to get one ticket for the Manchester gig, yet it was the furthest seat, behind the very last row! There I was in my secluded spot, detached from the bulk of the audience, crammed between the wall and the roof. But my location made no difference. Bon Jovi made his fans yell, dance, sing, jump and shiver.
Living On A Prayer, followed by You Give Love A Bad Name, erupted pure 80's vibe. The 40,000 attendants were carried away in a musical roller coaster for two hours and a half. As usual, the set-list was conceived as to gratify whims: I'd Die For You, Captain Crash And The Beauty Queen From Mars, Blaze Of Glory and Dry County were mingled with the staples (Born To Be My Baby, I'll Be There For You, In These Arms, It's My Life) and several cuts from the new album Lost Highway: the title track, Whole Lot Of Leaving, We Got It Going On, Any Other Day, I Love This Town (the latter three strung together as the first encore).
The peaks of the show, no doubt, were: Always, wherein Bon screamed his lungs out; Sleep When I'm Dead – introduced by Tico Torres's mischievous drumming –, blended into Twist And Shout; and Diamond Ring, with Bon and Richie Sambora alone on stage!
More favorites (Have A Nice Day, Bad Medicine), were played to an exhilarated crowd. Not relenting after 20 odd songs, the band returned for Saturday Night, closing with Dead Or Alive. Although the magic ride was over, the spell was not broken. We clapped till our hands were sore and left the venue with a swollen heart.
Bon Jovi gave a definite lesson, not to musicians in particular, but to any entertainer. Two decades ago he climbed his way to the top, and retains his position high above any of his peers because of his intensity and sincerity. As his anthem goes: "an angel's smile is what you sell, you promise me heaven" ... and he sent us straight!

Bloody (guest writer)


- Bon Jovi, Billy Idol & Little Angels -
- August, 29th 1993 -
- Koblenz (Germany), Messe-Gelände -

Doors opened an hour earlier as planned and the 25,000 fans could enter the festival area. The first band that day were the British Little Angels which heated up the audience. Easily. Little Angels played many songs of their current album which is called Jam and filled up with some old tunes. This band had the guts to take their brass section with them on tour, even if this marked their sound many other bands wouldn't. The fans of Bon Jovi welcome the British and appreciate the talent and the show which was mostly carries by singer Toby Jepson. At the end Little Angels covered an old Status Quo song Rockin' All Over The World and adapted it to Rockin' All Over Koblenz which the fans sing along with.
After a break of 45 minutes Billy Idol and his band entered the stage for their kind of cyperspace performance. It seems that Idol himself is changing his outlook all over again from Punk days to nowadays hydrogen peroxide blond dreadlocks. Billy had two female keyboarders to have an eye-catcher, coz the male members are all not as 'pretty' as Billy Boy. The band had a few good minutes on stage with old tunes like Rebel Yell, Sweet Sixteen and White Wedding, but that didn't changed the opinion of most fans that Billy Idol would be better off the running order.
At 8.30 p.m. Bon Jovi hit the stage. In the 120 minute long set the band showed a good show with the highlights of Keep The Faith. Even if Jon Bon Jovi isn't up to date when he announce the current single Bed Of Roses. Mr. Bon Jovi should switch on MTV sometimes, so he might have seen that the current single is I'll Sleep When I'm Dead! The set includes Blaze Of Glory, even if he promised never to play a track of the same called album with the band Bon Jovi. On the list were also Lay Your Hands On Me, Living On A Prayer, Dry Country up to Keep The Faith. The fans celebrated the band and especially Jon, not depending on the qualities or show talent, just for being there. The often teenaged fans up from age 10 would cheered, even if Jon and the boys played commercial jingles.!
The band finished the evening with extra songs including two Beatles tracks. First a version of Help followed by Blood On Blood and really the last track With A Little Help From My Friends which he got and hopefully knows to appreciate it. It was a fantastic evening with Jon and the boys. Let's hope that it won't take too long, until the next time they join the roads of success. It's always an event to see the New Jersey boys live. Don't miss them, when they are in town!

Claudia Ehrhardt

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