* Dashboard Confessional opened. Honestly, having seen Jovi so many times, I went because they were opening, I'd never seen them live and I really like their new album. As a Jovi opener, they were underwhelming. It was tough to watch, because I know how their fans know EVERY word and the arena was 30% full for them. They were professional, but Chris threw some jabs at the crowd. Bad timing - most people were still pre-gaming on the concourse. The cover of Summer of '69 was a good surprise. And while they did a lot of new stuff and threw in Stolen, Don't Wait and Vindicated, I feel "hands down" and "screaming infidelties" would've pulled some more cheers at the crowd. Their comfort level was dentist quality. And while they have the chops, the sound came off too guitar heavy. Belle of the Boulevard sounded great bec
ause you could through a piano in.
* The band entrance was unique thanks due to the digital screen projecting the album cover on the stage. Then it lifts and there the real Jersey boys are. They just seemed so on. They've reached the status of you have to stand for the whole show.
And the new stage setup has hugh, tico, dave and bobby in their own compartments, while 80% of the stage is for jon and richie. Looked like a fun playground for JBJ and RS.
The upper tier folks conked out 2/3 of the way through, but the rarities were what made the night for me, such as:
= "get ready" from the first album. jon can hit the high notes when he wants to. like on bed of roses, the first chorus he sang "TLFR" style then there was a return to normalcy.
= "homebound train" - yeah, people bathroomed during that, but RICHIE WAS ON VOCALS! And it was amazing. Such a groovy, bluesy guy. Would've been easy to swing I'll Be There for You, but that was a great jam!
= "We Got It Goin' Go" - the least lost highway sounding song from that album was awesome. He got everyone up
and the crowd was with them on every song no matter the album.
= After Richie's Homebound Train, JBJ returned halfway out on the catwalk for Hallelujah.
Very connected. Same in depth connection with such new tracks as Work for the Working Man and Love's the Only Rule. Anyway, the reason for this bullet is we got "something for the pain" like never before. All the band 1/2 way out and acoustic with Dave on accordion and tico going
maracas or beatbox on us. Very bluegrass and bare bones but so awesome, because while "in these arms" got me into Bon Jovi, "something for the pain" completed the conversion.
* Love's The Only Rule - what it is about track 9 on a Jovi album that I love. Bounce had Love Me Back to Life, Have a Nice Day had I Am, and The Circle has Love's The Only Rule. But the last one they seem to be doing regularly which is GREAT! The message is simple and powerful. The intro is straightforward and enlightening. I just loved how Jon said this is the last song we're doing tonight and the crowd initially bought it... They still gotta do Prayer and Wanted!
* Wanted then Prayer finished the encore. I may've enjoyed it more, but I was at a brewhouse across the street before the show chose to play all Jovi for a full hour - the problem: they only had wanted, prayer and it's my life. So I heard LOAP four times in 20 minutes. The wife was not pleased. But that amuses me.
*Ticket prices have gone up and the 'inner circle' seating, formally backstage for jbj fan club seating seems to go to corporate peeps who plop down $2500/seat. Instead of mugging those people of their tickets, it makes me want to do well in my career to where I can fork that over no problem. It is a business, but the die hard fan club peeps keep getting pushed. But as I learned last night, no matter where you sit you get your money's worth. I mean, they opened with 'blood on blood' and hit us evenly across all 27 years. Now if the R n R hall of fame could get their act together and get these guys in the hall, the universe can align properly.
Thanks for reading. It's been a while since I Jovi-blabbered.
PS Here's a picture perfect imperfect picture: