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bon jovi

With Richie Sambora bowing out on this World Tour on the eve of the opening night in Washington for another stint in rehab (or because the pay cheque wasn't big enough, depending on whose story you believe) many fans felt the game was up for Bon Jovi as a band, especially as their latest album 'What About Now' is considered by many as their weakest piece of work to date, although it still went to the Number One spot Stateside.

With Sambora bowing out, ticket sales have been hit a little with most ardent Bon Jovi fans citing "No Sambora, No Jovi" and I must include myself amongst that number. However the car crash voyeur in me was curious to see how Jon boy and his boys could carry it off with aplomb with stand in guitarist Phil X ,who has stepped briefly into Sambora's cowboy boots before on the previous tour.

Fortunately, I was given a ticket on the day of the gig for the Golden inner circle and how could I refuse on this hot summer day with the promise of a few light ales before the show by the Serpentine Lake in Hyde Park... Whoa!! I'm halfway there... Wooaaahhh!!!... Yep you get the picture.

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At 7.20pm Bon Jovi hit the stage with 'Rockin' All Over The World', not in homage to Status Quo as some may think, but to the writer of the song by John Fogerty of Credence Clearwater Revival fame. With second song 'You Give Love A Bad Name' followed by 'Raise Your Hands' it was business as usual.

bon jovi

There was a lot less posing going on from JBJ this time knowing he had to deliver the goods. In fact the whole band seemed to have raised their game. Phil X (Real name Xenidis) concentrated on his parts with respect to Sambora, but he certainly stamped his own identity on the show without any signs of egotism. As the show went on, X was on blistering form with an exquisite solo on 'Dry County'.

bon jovi

With an hour's worth of well earned encores Bon Jovi played a blinder and proved why they are the mega stars that they are. A three hour show of anthems. Love them or loath 'em , most bands can only dream of having a songbook like Bon Jovi's and getting this kind of adulation.

Set list:
Rockin' All Over The World
You Give Love A Bad Name
Raise Your Hands
Born To Be My Baby
Lost Highway
It's My Life
Because We Can
What About Now
We Got It Goin' On
Keep The Faith
Someday I'll Be Saturday Night
In These Arms
Captain Crash & The Beauty Queen From Mars
We Weren't Born To Follow
Who Says You Can't Go Home
I'll Sleep When I'm Dead
Bad Medicine

Dry County
Wanted Dead Or Alive
Love's The Only Road
Have A Nice Day
Livin' On A Prayer

These Days
Blood On Blood

bon jovi

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