Hey God, These Days (1995)

The Bon Jovi album These Days (1995) starts with a pounding heavy guitar driven intro that cuts open your ribs, exposes your heart, and then drops its message right where it frickin hurts;

Hey God,
I’m just a little man, I got a wife and family

I almost lost my house, I bought into the dream
We’re barely holding on when I’m in way too deep
We’re two paychecks away from living out on the streets

With two more verses and a bridge, “Hey God” delivers three more stories.

These Days is a socially conscious, powerfully honest record that makes its point right from the first song.

Not only should “Hey God” have been These Days’ flag ship single;
It is also the entire These Days album, crushed into one song!

Meanwhile on Wikipedia:

“Hey God” is a song from American rock band Bon Jovi’s sixth studio album, These Days (1995),
released as the album’s fifth and final single on June 24, 1996.

Although it did not chart in the United States, it became a moderate hit in Canada, Finland, Iceland,
the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

.
And after this first paragraph, on a page that will rank high in the category Ultra Short Wiki Pages About Amazing Rock Songs, the author could be explaining WHY this page is so short;

“As with most of the songs on These Days,
“Hey God” is one of Bon Jovi’s darker songs.”

“Bon Jovi’s darker songs”
Is it me or can you also almost hear the sigh in that?
Like a “Who needs that?”.

Worth the extra mile! 2 disc version, Main album has 2 songs extra (14 total) + really great bonus disc

Or maybe the author was a bit bogged down by the lukewarm reception of the album, and he or she had forgotten they had actually liked that album,
and – mind you!- that in Europe we have entire clans of people, and when I say people I mean Real Serious Music Lovers,  who would never have gotten on the Bon Jovi wagon if it were not for the 1995 album These Days;
Maybe they had forgotten what the album had accomplished.

And in all fairness, these people who suddenly recognized the quality of Bon Jovi after listening to These Days, did drop off the wagon pretty quickly.
And yet!
As far as I know them, all have expressed Bon Jovi has earned that place in their heart and extensive vinyl collection, just from that album.

The “darker songs” on These Days did what no other Bon Jovi album had ever done; 
It won the critics’ hearts.

Now that I think of it, this might explain why I myself have been unfairly harsh to this album.
In a 2019 song-by-song Bon Jovi video series for my YouTube, which I am still committed to restore, I even boldly claimed that, in all honesty? 
These Days may be my least favorite Bon Jovi album.

*mike drop*

Which was not just a very unpopular opinion but being a fan of heavy music, being a Bon Jovi fan, and I am also a proud citizen of The Netherlands one of the few countries where the album was well received and probably doubled Bon Jovi’s fan base;
Then WHY was I so harsh towards this strong album?

I never investigated that question too much, also because I was kind of attached to my own antagonistic standpoint here.
But I think now that I m typing this blogpost I inadvertently answered my own question;

It was BECAUSE the serious critics suddenly got on the Bon Jovi wagon.

And mid 90s?
I mean give me a break!

BON_JOVI_THESE+DAYS-52174
press kit/ promotional photo for These Days album

SURE!
Maybe, mid 80s, out of spite for Bon Jovi clearing out your country  of female attention, you refuse to admit the Slippery songs are among the best songs in rock n roll history.
I get it, it was the 80s, and it all went really fast when within 6 months you received a three puncher of three hits that was so tough to take in, you just couldn’t.
I get it.

But the album New Jersey, 18 months after you got your Slippery-hits-ass whooping completed (on a strong strike, I admit) with Wanted Dead Or Alive?
Jon’s award winning record in 1990?
Richie’s blues album in 1991?

Keep The Faith in 1992?

Are you honestly gonna tell me you needed to wait until These Days 1995 before you heard that Bon Jovi was amazing?
I m just not buying it.

I will admit that me still leaning towards claiming These Days is my least favorite Bon Jovi album, is not backed up by facts.

But in hindsight I can see why I just refused to agree with people who were NOT there, in the years when Bon Jovi was being talked down upon as being just another hair metal band.

I can see why I owed it to my teenage heart who had recognized good music when she heard it,
to ignore all the serious music critics when mid-90s they wanted a piece of very tasty pies.
As if the Bon Jovi bakery had recently finally gotten the recipe right.

Girls years younger than the serious music critics had heard it from the get go,
but you were too busy looking down on it!
(and listening to Pink Floyd I imagine)

Okay that was a bit ranty.
But you get the idea.

In a way These Days is for the Bon Jovi catalog what The Last Jedi is for Star Wars fandom;
A work of art that managed to double the fan base, but with two halves that hardly talk to each other.

Unlike all the Bon Jovi albums that had come before it, and I would argue pretty much all the Bon Jovi albums that came after;
These Days did not come to us, in the spirit of union.

It cut us open with the first riffs and in song seven we’re still bleeding on the floor.

I can’t write a love song the way I feel today
And I can’t sing no song of hope, I got nothing to say

I can’t fight the feelings that are buried in my veins
I send this song to you, wherever you are
As my guitar lies bleeding in my arms

My Guitar Lies Bleeding In My Arms
(song 7)

These Days was a raw and honest “WTF God?!” message, that never pretended to be anything it wasn’t.
Least of all a regular Bon Jovi record.

And regardless of how long we’d been in fandom, regardless how old we were at the time that record was released, or regardless if we’d already been born;
We all felt that.

And to this day, 2021, painfully slowly clawing our way out of the pandemic;
We still do.

Hey God,
there’s nights you know I want to scream

These days you’re even harder to believe
I know how busy you must be, but Hey God…

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer
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It’s too soon to tell | 2020

playlist: album 2020 by Bon Jovi (October 2020)

bon-jovi-do-what-you-can-videoThis morning, when I gave myself YouTube time in bed before I got up to start this first day after my birthday, I watched a video of the restoration of an army lighter, found on the beaches of Normandy.

I think my YouTube channel translated the title of the video, so I have no idea how the video is called where you live, but here it is:
UITERST Zeldzame lichtere restauratie Wereldoorlog 2 D-Day 1944

And watching the video made me so happy!
I had already had an amazing birthday, but to see how even this lighter which was in the poorest of shapes, could be brought back to a shiny, fully functioning lighter, with love, time, and skill?
That made my day. 

It really was the icing on the cake, a reminder that even when things look really bad?
And with certainty beyond saving, beyond repair, beyond giving it any place in our living, breathing daily life because whatever this is or used to be?
It’s definitely useless now.

That even that one particular thing, that you were about to Marie Kondo out of your home, has just a good a chance of becoming the eye catcher of your collection, your turning point from when things went up, or the platform from where your life took off, as any other more shiny, more obvious object.

But I already knew that.
Knowing that you should not be too quick in your verdict, had been the main reason why my birthday had started off on such a high, and why I knew I had nothing to be ashamed off.

That despite that gnawing feeling that haunted me since the start of the pandemic, there were actually no real signs my 2020-2021 had indeed been one big failure.
Quite the opposite, in fact.

Because over the course of the last few weeks everything with regard to my Bon Jovi related blogs, YouTube channel, yoga plans, are coming back to life and are coming together as well!
I even feel inspired to pick up my Dutch yoga channel, and other projects or ideas that I started in 2020, but that I couldn’t bring into fruition or I dropped out of.

All ideas are coming back as shiny and new as that second world war lighter.

But the biggest shift in perspective has been when I started organizing my writing under an alterego, dusting off old diaries I stop-started, and articles I published when I thought I was having the worst year of my life.
When I felt so alone, so disconnected and angry with the rest of humanity who in my eyes were an untrustworthy bunch of motherfuckers who were not taking responsibility for every motherfucking thing they had created before Covid;
And now they were all just a little too keen to throw it all on the virus.

While Jon Bon Jovi was washing dishes for his charity organization, when the first chords of Do What You Can were written, and the band pulled back their 2020 March release of the album 2020, to review it, write more songs, and root it even deeper into being the topical, social conscious record it was already intended to be but that got to a whole new level now, obviously;
When all that constructive work was done by the band I admired, I was contemplating if it was possible to break up with humanity.

If I would become a bitcoin trader, would that mean I would never have to see anybody for my survival, on a day to day basis, ever again?
Was there a way I could stop contributing, stop creating?
And I never had to suppress the desire to destroy all my work as often as I have the past 16 months.

There is an African proverb:
“A child that is not embraced by the village, will burn it down to feel its warmth” 
I didn’t need to burn the village, I could burn my own work and the only thing that kept me from it was knowing I would regret it in the future.

That ultimately, regardless of how my life would go, I would need a pen, a blog, a typewriter, SOMETHING! To let go, to express, and if it would all end up oxidized on a deserted beach I was as fine with that as anything.
I didn’t care.

But I did know not to burn the pen, the paper, the typewriter, and also not the old diaries and my old work which I ve learned are of value just for being there, or for being here in my filing cabinet.
They give off a reassuring, comforting glow.

But yes, it was an incredibly tough year, and my work under that alterego and here too, was a mess. I didn’t expect anything of use to come of it.
And then this week, with a big sigh, I dived in and started going through that work and I found a piece I had written two weeks into the pandemic, late March 2020.
And it blew me away….

Like a series of bombs, a sequence of hardcore raw, emotional, truth calling posts exploded in my head and I saw what I thought had been my absolute worst year, the 16 months of pandemic, which would soon include a whole year between birthdays, and a time in my life where for the very first time ever, I had absolutely nothing positive to say about it, from an artistic perspective;
That this work had a high chance of being the best I ever created.

And it could only have been written in that lonely, cut-offness from the world.

My agenda is filling up with dates again.
Summer 2021, and the new year of my life, is the moment when my life is returning to the way it was and added on top of that are new ways of communicating, new websites, new projects, new ways of artistic communication with the world.
All social nourishment which will mean the months ahead will not have the same energy as 2020-2021. I will not be able to recreate what I did then.

And that’s what I mean when I titled this post Too soon to tell.
I don’t mean that if you went through personal tragedy and hardship, it is too soon to tell that you had a horrible time.
You are allowed to grieve and give yourself time to process, recover and regroup.

But if you, like I did, have a bad feeling about 2020-2021 professionally? Artistically?
In the sense of what you have accomplished? 

Or you have a bad feeling about it, psychologically?
Because you don’t feel like the pandemic has made you more resilient, nor agile, nor that you acquired or learned anything you will fall back on in the future?

Then trust me:
It is too soon to tell.

Maybe “tell” is not the right word. It is too soon to SEE.
Because I can tell you right now;
2020-2021 is not what you think it is, or was.

It might look like a green oxidized chunk of metal.
But after cleaning, polishing, and restoring it,
2020 can light a fire so bright, it will warm you for the rest of your life.  

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer
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Time Blocking With The Bon Jovi Bullet Collection

Little bear Puux arranges our bullet cd collection

This blogpost was one where I thought:
“I can’t do this.”
Too flat, weird, off-topic. And besides, I m sure people know how to date Bon Jovi albums!
They may not all have stickers on the cases with the release date, but I m sure they’ll manage.

But you see, here is the thing;
Maybe you haven’t thought about it.
About how your Bon Jovi collection, whether a physical one like mine or playlists on your music account, is such a great and inspiring way to plan your time.

One cd blocks the time you spend on the activity.
The number of albums dictates the number of times you do it.
And the historic order gives it a rhythm and overall structure.

For example: 
Every month you do fifteen sessions of an activity, listening to every record once.

The activity can be either something fun, like one yoga session per album, which is how I use them.
Or something you value but don’t get around to.
Like work on a project for a minimum duration of one Bon Jovi cd.

Which is how I perhaps should be using them! 😅

But I am on God’s planning, since a couple of weeks.
No more planning for me.
For projects without an external deadline I found out the hard way (three years of having a surplus of notebooks yet time slipping through my fingers!) that the more I plan the less I get done.
And that my biggest achievements were done with zero planning.

They were done, however, at the expense of cleaning my house, exercise, seeing daylight, cooking proper meals, showers, and so on.
But if there had been a planning?
These big achievements would never have gotten done at all.

Bullet collection: band albums only, no best ofs, solo albums, rareties and so on.

So I only use planning for things I sometimes don’t allow myself to do or have. Like daylight, and yoga, and cleaning my house and having proper meals.
Planning is not to make myself be productive, but to make myself a good life.
And then God is in charge of productivity, because who else would you put in charge of that, right?
I heard a guru say that since we would question if something came from God or not, the next best thing to faith, was commitment.
😝
Which I now don’t have to have because I have chosen faith that the right thing will come through!

Such as the urge to write this blogpost, where I was like:
“Are you sure this is the topic?” when the idea came through.
But I quickly restored myself, because I knew the alternative to doing as I was nudged from inside, or above, was taking responsibility for my own work.
And before you know it you have a content calendar, and every Monday is when you write rambly posts, and on Tuesdays we do the Box Set, on Wednesday we make a YouTube video and so on!
The horror of a planned project!

No…. then I d rather just write what comes through.

Today that is: How to use your Bon Jovi cd’s as cool planning tools.

So back to that!
HOW to use your Bon Jovi collection as a time-blocking tool for your projects or your fun things?

If you like the idea of a fixed sequence of the albums then you can choose between earliest album first, most recent album last.
Or you do time machine!

Time machine is part of a Bon Jovi show, when they play Runaway.
Runaway was a song Jon Bon Jovi recorded and he plugged it with a local radio station.
Other radio stations picked it up from there, the band was formed and Bon Jovi was born.

Time machine is the live on stage intro to that song, Runaway.
Jon counts down from the year it is (they have done this on the 2019 tour as well) all the way to 1982.
Then he tells the story of his pitch at the radio station and how he promised the dj that he was a rock n roll star.

If you listen or use the albums in time machine fashion, you start with the most recent one, and then go back in time.

Since the latest album 2020, there are 15 studio albums.
A very tempting way I think, to start using them, is dividing them over the days of the week.

Then you listen to the entire collection every week, and the week gets this lovely predictable rhythm to it.

I put them all in time machine order, and then here is your schedule;

Monday
2020 Bon Jovi – 2020  48:08
2016 This House Is Not For Sale (International Deluxe Version) 70:28
2015 Burning Bridges  40:22

Just pick one;
2020 when you re in a mood for current events.
This House Is Not For Sale, when you need to be reminded you’re not backing down and are going to crush it this week
And Burning Bridges for highest density of underappreciated brilliant songs.
The album was a contractual obligation and was barely promoted by the band.

Tuesday
2012 What About Now 51:36
2008 The Circle 52:49
Anthems and ballads to get you through your Tuesday on a high.

Wednesday
2007 Lost Highway 49:57
2005 Have A Nice Day 49:40
Country inspired Lost Highway? Or more classical Bon Jovi?
Two vastly different albums to pick from every Wednesday. 

Thursday
2002 Bounce 49:10
2000 Crush 57:52

Fans of heavy guitars will throw Bounce on repeat.
And those longing for that nostalgic: “They’re back! They made it!” feel when Bon Jovi returned with It’s My Life, are going to go for Crush.

Friday
1995 These Days  63:55
1992 Keep The Faith  66:10

Two absolute killer albums!
I don’t care how busy you are Friday, but your activity will get done!

Saturday
1988 New Jersey 56:32
1986 Slippery When Wet 43:49

Is this is a musical Do Not Disturb sign or what?
Nothing will stop you from listening to these.

Sunday 
1985 7800° Fahrenheit 47:10
1984 Bon Jovi – Bon Jovi 38:33

A sweet encore to your week with the earliest work.
With the time machine song “Runaway”.

“Hey mister!
Do me a favor and play this song.
And in 3 minutes 50 seconds, you’re gonna see;
A rock n roll star.”

 

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer

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compilation; the time machine intro to Runaway (2006) counting all the way down to 1982, and an early performance of Runaway (1984)

Someday Just Might Be Tonight | series: The Box Set

The ninth song on the box set 100.000.000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong (2004).

You are in the premier league of Bon Jovi Fans if you immediately know which era Someday Just Might Be Tonight is from, upon hearing.
And on which album it would have been, if it had been used for an album.
Instead of not being released until the box set (2004), which has previously unreleased songs on it, from nearly two decades.

And within the premier league, you are at the top if you know which song is the  musical twin from Someday Just Might Be Tonight?

I however, do not belong to that category.
The era?
Destination Anyway era (solo album Jon Bon Jovi 1997)
Got that one.

The twin song?
Fortunately the answer was given to me, because I couldn’t guess.
But now I m standing by it;
It’s Ugly.

Ugly is the twin song from Someday Just Might Be Tonight 

Although there are multiple technical similarities, the biggest “Aha! Found it!” came from how they make me feel.
They’re both melancholic songs, but in a weird way. They’re…. I don’t know, “Anthems in Minor”, is what I would call them. With my dangerously limited knowledge of music.

You could imagine both Ugly as well Someday Just Might Be Tonight, having an entirely different feel if played with a heavy guitar, drums, and Jon throwing in some Woah!!!!s.

Like many Bon Jovi songs, Someday Just Might Be Tonight, is filled with messages of hope, and to never give up.
But I would have welcomed them to be a little more full-on, because they’re not even making a scratch in the depressed state I am finding myself in.
Day after day.

The only thing that keeps me going is absolutely refusing to think about it, going in full denial, and make firm resolutions to really go rock my life after Covid, and never be online again.

I think I m going to make a plan how I can live my life after Covid without ever having to spend one more minute behind my computer!
Maybe if I publish all my books (both English and Dutch, and all my accounts); Curate all my videos, and refrain from creating any new online content from the moment Covid is over until death do me pass?
So that I have no choice but to ONLY live in the REAL world?!

“We’re having an online meeting.”
“I don’t own a computer.”

It would be an art project, of living offline.
Yes… And Woah!
That sounds like an amazing plan.

Maybe someday.
And it just might be tonight.

.

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer

PS: Here’s my new YouTube channel, called Rock Your Business (former No Yoga channel) The first video was absolute gold:
#1 Your Fans Are Waiting For The Show To Start!
| Rock Your Business Channel Launch & Origin Story

.

The BOX SET SERIES

In 2004 Bon Jovi created a 4-cd (1 dvd) box set with unreleased work,
called “100.000.000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong”.

In this series, The Box Set, I am discussing all of the 50 songs

Someday Just Might Be Tonight
is the eighth post in
The Box Set Series

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Rock Star Reinvention Processing

If one of these days I vanish?
Even if you know all my accounts – and trust me, my productivity is so high, you do not want to know all my accounts! but for story’s sake let’s say that you do – and you hear nothing from me?
Not a single post, nor a new video, even my teddy bear no longer posts to my Facebook page, and if you’d have my phone number and Whatsapp me because you want to know if my teddy bear is alright, he would not even respond.

Then it’s possible nothing serious happened, and we’re not in bed with a 10 day fever and a positive Corona test, but that I have embarked on a vision quest to DEMAND my vision to show itself to me!
Although demanding will probably have the opposite effect.

A quest to create so much space, and drop ever more layers of who I once was, so that the vision will take the stage and shine.
And rock my world.

Because my vision has been moving in and out of my life for at least 6 years. And every time I try to name it, give it a place, and tie my name to it, it seems to leave.
The thing I am talking about is my vision for (try not to fall asleep as I say this, although I would totally understand) but the thing I m talking about is yoga.
[ you promised to hear me out ]
[ or you didn’t but I m making you ]

I KNOW yoga is alive.
And not just regular yoga that people do to make their lives better. Sure, that is alive too. But that’s not what I m talking about.
I m talking about the very specific yoga, that I have always had in my mind’s eye, and that for the past 6 years I ve called Rock Star Yoga.
That bad ass, rarely spotted, broad shouldered, beer drinking, loud, cool as f, version of yoga?
Oh he/she/it is alive.

Just doesn’t bother to show up consistently, because it leaves that to the living by the rules people.
Doesn’t respond well to expectations either, will leave you hanging for however long it takes for you to let go!

Rock Star Yoga cannot be summoned anymore than you could summon Jon Bon Jovi.

So because this entity has moved in and out of my life and vision for so long, I have decided that it’s time to shift to a higher gear, to make just another reference to Jon Bon Jovi.
Speaking of which!
This entire me getting into an existential crisis about my work, disillusioned by a profession I thought I had become, (I was into yoga professionally for 20 years, training years included), resembles Jon Bon Jovi’s soul searching in 1990 when he made Blaze of Glory solo album.

From what I remember, he made a road trip to the West coast, spent days on the set in New Mexico, on the set of Young Guns 2. Made a cameo appearance, wrote the song Blaze of Glory on a napkin, pitched that as the soundtrack, and then wrote a whole album for Young Guns 2.
It was a solo project, without the band. He was now collaborating with guest musicians.
And what had started with a cameo ended with Jon Bon Jovi reinventing his music and himself.
And winning every music award there was to win in 1990.

So, I ve said goodbye to my students, to my yoga business; I no longer play old songs. 
I m inspired by new things, new influences, but two and a half months after  ending the lease of my yoga studio, my plan to reinvent myself has not been as concrete as heading to New Mexico.
And I don’t even know WHAT to reinvent! 

Am I still a yoga teacher even? Or no? 
Am I still an independent even though I do not own a business anymore and never want one ever again? 
Am I a writer?
Am I a performer?
The strongest pull is from yoga. That’s what I was interested in 23 years ago, and that’s what I did for a living for a long time.

But if I want to continue with yoga, even more than Jon Bon Jovi with his career in music, it really IS time to reinvent my craft!
I absolutely cannot go on like this any further.

Teaching yoga has broken me.

Either me and yoga reinvent ourselves, uplevel and start kicking some serious butt.
Or it’s time to leave the remains of the yoga that once was, in the desert of New Mexico and never look back. 

So if you can’t find me, I’m with my teddy bear on the back of my bike, and we’re cruising route 66, each with our own thoughts.
And I m just going to see where life takes me.

I m gonna hang out with people who have asked me for a one-off gig, and I ll be like;
“You know what? I ll do a whole project! This could be fun!”

Although “fun” may not be the right term here.
Because there was one thing, on that bland Wikipedia page about the album Blaze of Glory, that really struck a cord.
A word when I knew:
“God damn it…. that’s it. I know that’s it.
That’s the thing I am looking for.”

And the word was not reinvention.

It was redemption.

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer

Where to follow me:
I will stop blogging for now – but I look forward to focusing my efforts on the YouTube channel! Reviewing the 1995 Bon Jovi tour
Subcribe there and we’ll catch up soon!

And for “Travel updates” on how me and yoga are going:
subscribe to a different channel, called
No Yoga channel

—–.

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I Get A Rush | series: The Box Set

video: the original on the box set

2nd video: the cover “Rockin’ All Over The World” was the main inspiration for
“I Get A Rush”

For a wee moment, I was afraid I would have to create something out of nothing.
There seemed to be no significant information available about the eighth song on the box set 100.000.000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong (2004)

But I did find a few great lines in an article from 2018, that ranked all Bon Jovi songs!
It said (with I Get A Rush at position 80)

80. “I Get a Rush,” 100,000,000 Bon Jovi Fans Can’t Be Wrong (2004)    

Inspired by John Fogerty’s “Rockin’ All Over the World,” which was later performed with Steven Van Zandt on their 1995 tour.   
“I Get a Rush,” from three years later, is an utter delicacy of joy, with a humble arm-waving chorus.

There are so many cute things in this description, I would add a blushing emoji with the hands, if I knew where to find things like that on my desktop.

First of all the song it refers to, “Rockin’All Over The World”, is probably their most played cover song.
And since I m reviewing the 1995 Crossroad tour on YouTube; I have heard it frequently, including the times Rockin’All Over The World was performed with Steven Van Zandt, which is Little Steven from Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band.

But for us eighties people Little Steven rose to some kind of Untouchable Legendary Status because he wrote, produced, organized a collaboration between dozens of musicians “Artists United Against Apartheid” with a song called Sun City (1985);
About how you should not be playing this white resort in South Africa.

So with that background, that’s already a short circuit of things to like about the song that inspired the eighth song on the box set.

The only “big but” I have with the description of this song, at place 80, is that unlike what that description says, I Get A Rush was not from three years after 1995;
It was from 1996.
A time when Bon Jovi were still touring, although the tour was now officially named the These Days tour and no longer the Crossroad tour.
Meaning “Rockin’ All Over The World” was still very fresh or even still being played, when the, and I quote, “utter delicacy of joy” that is I Get A Rush, was written.

But there is more.

Before I write these posts about the songs on the Box Set I always listen to as many (live) versions of the song, as I can find. And it was there, where I found the next gem.
I m so excited by this, and I don’t even entirely know what it means! 
But I think it’s about sex and Jon Bon Jovi;
So who needs to know more, right?
[ I would now have added an emoji with one big eye and one small eye and the tongue out of its mouth, so I guess this is the moment for gratitude that I m still on my desktop. ]

The video I am talking about, is I Get A Rush performed in 2009, by Jon Bon Jovi on a fan club day.
And here’s what (I think) Jon says:

“I’m gonna have to introduce all the songs because I’m telling you, it will go a bit crazy but we’re gonna start easy. It’s like foreplay, I m gonna get going real slow,”
* makes hand gestures indicating he’s touching a lot of curves*
“touching and feeling. Feel the whole way around.”
(at this stage the yelling in the crowd is probably costing a few eardrums)
“You’re moving just so close”
Jon now makes a hand gesture that indicates that he has brought his face very close to the woman’s, but doesn’t go for the kiss.
He drops the hand, and fully confident that he knows how this is done, he says the final words as he turns around, talking to the friends he’s playing with this night.
“And you wait for her to make the move BACK!”

And I’m yelling and screaming in front of my desktop:
“Oh my God, that is EXACTLY how it is done!”

That’s how you get a rush.

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer

.

The BOX SET SERIES

In 2004 Bon Jovi created a 4-cd (1 dvd) box set with unreleased work,
called “100.000.000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong”.

In this series, The Box Set, I am discussing all of the 50 songs

I Get A Rush
is the seventh post in
The Box Set Series

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video:
I Get a Rush at the Jon Bon Jovi fan club day 2009.

(These arms are) Open all night | series: The Box Set


video:
The song Open All Night on the Bounce album (not the Box Set) is from the same family.

In 2004 Bon Jovi created a 4-cd (1 dvd) box set with unreleased work,
called100.000.000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong”.
In this series, The Box Set, I am discussing all of the 50 songs.

And it’s a welcome back post!
Because a few weeks ago, I quit this series. A major reason was that in 2019 I had already written about the songs that were up next:
So “Open all night” and “These arms are open all night” had already been discussed.

The following is an updated version from that post.
Making it the oldest post in this series. 

(These arms are) Open all night | series: The Box Set

For all women currently between 42 and 50, this was the male bench mark. God have mercy on our souls.

“This title, Open all night, we’ve used about five times.
We finally did a song on the Bounce record,
called Open all night.

Great title, we never could get it right.”
Jon Bon Jovi, 32 min 28 sec 

.
So according to Jon, there were five songs called Open All Night.
But even if you go with the three that were released, you’d have trouble distinguishing them.

The only mainstream version of Open all night is, like Jon said, on the album Bounce.

The Box Set, 100,000,000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong, is for the fans and has the two other versions:
Open all night
and These arms are open all night.

Three different songs, but they’re all ballads which makes them similar.
And although the title of the song on Bounce is “Open all night”;
The lyrics of that song sing “These arms are open all night.”
Adding to the confusion about which song is which.

I’ve listened to all three songs, and here is what I found.

For clarity’s sake, I m going to assume the protagonist of these songs is male, and preferably Jon Bon Jovi, unless he specifically says that he is Jones and he drives a dented red Chevrolet then we go with that.
And we’ll assume the other person is a woman.

So here’s the three different songs:

1. Open all night
at 100,000,000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong
live version Atlantic City 2004

Is about a girlfriend who has left to make it in the world and her boyfriend waiting at the bar, telling her not to worry.
Open all night refers to the boyfriend being open all night, meaning waiting for her.

2. These arms are open all night
at 100,000,000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong
live version Borgota 2004

Is about a man who introduces himself as “Jones” and informs us he has a dented red Chevrolet, and gives a woman he met at the bar a detailed description how to get to his house.

Now if Jon Bon Jovi would try pick me up with this:
“These arms are open all night
If you need someone to talk to
A hand to hold onto and if it feels right
These arms are open all night
That would be a Hell YES! if ever there was any.

I would feel completely seen, wanted, desired, and although I m not a night person at all, I would make an exception.
However.
This song identifies him as not being JBJ, but as “Jones”.
And I m actually surprised Jones sees the headlights of the woman behind him following him, because he confesses (out loud!?):
“God only knows how long it’s been that I been this lonely”

So instead of the gorgeous man Jon Bon Jovi – and then I have not even talked about the husky speaking voice Jon has and the sensitivity of the songs, and so on – so instead of that man who was glued to my wall in the 80s, who was my first concert, and who still falls into the category “I still definitely would”;
We’re now talking about someone I just met, in the middle of the night, who feels lonely?

I have not heard one reason to say Yes to this.

And even if it had been Jon “Rock God” Bon Jovi?
T
he shorter the encounter is gonna be, the more I want to feel special and loved, and a real connection. 

Which brings me to:

3. Open all night, main version, Bounce
album recording

There is a reason this is the one that made it to the main studio album.
It starts with a verse where Jon – Jon’s back! I like him MUCH better than somebody who introduces himself with a surname Jones – shares with us that he saw us coming from a mile away and noticed our poor little heart was bruised black and blue.

Then we get a verse where he tells us that he too, has been hurt. He knows how it feels. And that the last thing we need is another pickup line, so he’s not going to do that.
Wait.
Maybe I should just quote this. Here are those verses:

“I saw you coming from a mile away
Trying to hide behind that pretty face
Bet my last dollar baby you been bruised
Poor little heart all black ‘n’ blue

Last thing you need’s another pickup line
You must have heard them all a thousand times
God only knows what you been through
Believe me I been broken too

It aches, it breaks, it takes your breath away
I’ve been around that block a time or two”

Okay, if there is a woman now, considering to NOT immediately go with Jon, she’s lying.

We just got picked up in 2,5 verse.

Bring in the chorus:
“Baby, I don’t want to fall in love with you
I try, try, try but I can’t get around the truth
Please don’t say my name, give this heart a break
I don’t want to make the same mistake but it’s too late
I’ll leave on the light
These arms are open all night”

Song number 3 wins.
Jon gets the girl.

This is such a no-brainer that I feel like an idiot even going through the rest of the song, but I will do so, as a sign of song-appreciation.

So we had Jon buttering us up with perfect verses and bringing it home with the best pickup chorus in the history of rock music and then we have:
(Take it away Jon)

“I got your taste in the back of my mouth
I want to reach in and pull it out
And I’d be lying if I didn’t say
When you’re this close I’m afraid

Of the way I’ll feel if I touch your hair
The way I’ll miss you when you’re not there
And that I’ll see you when I close my eyes
It’s too late, I’ve crossed that line

Not only did Jon have us at “Baby, I don’t want to fall in love with you”;
He now burns the very last of our entire defense system to the ground,
by admitting he too has fallen hard for us.
That he didn’t want to fall in love, he wasn’t looking for it, he wasn’t needy or lonely, and yet it happened anyway.
*soft sigh*
Isn’t life beautiful?

Are we now not all dreaming of being swept off our feet by someone we don’t want to fall in love with, but we just can’t help ourselves?

In another documentary, Jon speaks about his mixed feelings of singing ballads in front of a live audience. The interviewer tells him that the crowd was completely quiet the other night, when Jon sang his version of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah.
Jon answers:
There is a ballad called Open all Night, on Bounce, that I love for that reason.
But it gets the polite applause at the end, because it’s not that..”

*makes energetic hand gestures*
(18 min 30 sec)

After this analysis of the lyrics of Open all Night on Bounce, I don’t believe Jon.
I don’t believe anyone would not get it, if Jon sang this live.
That was not a “polite” applause.

That was “God that hurt please play a rock anthem to make it go away.” – applause.

It was a crowd with arms that were not just open for Jon;
They would have given them both to have him in it.

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer

.

The BOX SET SERIES

(These Arms Are) Open All Night
is the sixth post in
The Box Set Series

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You can find the subscription button on this page, probably somewhere on the right.

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These arms are open all night (Live)
{from 100,000,000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong}

Need to Bounce back today?

photo by Mark Weiss – click to go to his amazing book The Decade That Rocked, 2020

There are few things as frustrating, as having a good night sleep and a day filled with sunlight (sun? at least daylight), fresh air and hours of exercise with walking and cycling the forests of Nijmegen;
And having them punished by a headache.

Because I had not finished my second (!) coffee this morning, I thought there was a chance the headache was from caffeine withdrawal, so I had an extra coffee.
But to no effect.

So here I am, at the end of a frustrated afternoon, where I did not film the new video for my hibernating 1995 Bon Jovi Concert series on YouTube

I spent the entire morning studying all the notes I made (I have scripted out all the lines Jon has said during the Lahr concert, Germany)
Filmed the video too but threw it out because it wasn’t good enough.
And then there was the “
biathlon” which did not bring me home blushing and in radiant health, ready to reshoot.

Not good.
Not good at all.

But, and this is where YouTube turns out to be your Savior in times of need,
I was happily surprised by a YouTube suggestion:

A review of the Bon Jovi album Bounce.
And Bounce may be my favorite Bon Jovi album…. 

So I checked it out and not only am I totally loving the review;
Erik’s House: Bon Jovi BOUNCE (2002) Album REVIEW with SCORES

But Erik is creating an entire playlist of Bon Jovi reviews, starting with 2020.

Erik is funny, knowledgeable, and although everybody who gives almost all heavy guitar songs on Bounce a straight “ten” has already been cleared by me, it was when he shared his thoughts on the ballads and just casually threw in “Silent Night”;
That I knew this was a true fan.

So go check out Erik’s Bounce review on YouTube or at the bottom of this post.

And if you have a headache?
Then you go for the big guns and binge watch Erik’s entire list of Bon Jovi reviews.

Bouncing back guaranteed.

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer
.
New video Bon Jovi Concert Review Lahr 1995 expected tomorrow at:
Suzanne Beenackers YouTube
.

The New Rock Star Writer 

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You can find the subscription button on this page, probably somewhere on the right.

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Suzanne Beenackers YouTube

 

Miss Fourth of July | series: The Box Set

In 2004 Bon Jovi created a 4-cd (1 dvd) box set with unreleased work,
called
100.000.000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong”.
In this series I discuss all of the 50 songs.

I m still early in this series, yet this post may end up being my favorite one.

video: At 29:20  Jon says all there is to say about this song.
Or at least: All that he’s ready to share!

There will be times in this Box Set series, where I supply you with a fascinating origin story of the song, hail it for its profound meaning, or conduct science experiments how few sentences it took before Jon had us crying like babies;

And then there will be times when I will diligently write out, an entire speech or full verse or chorus, because I think it should be swallowed whole and that we should not be picking it apart in an effort to understand it.

Or the third option, which is my personal favorite;
I write about why the song is about sex.

And then!
Then there is apparently the one in a 100.000.000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong– chance that I just might be able to deliver all three of them! 

Because after hearing Jon’s elaborate explanation on how bad he was doing when he wrote “Miss Fourth of July” and how deep his crisis, and I then read along three verses, three repetitions of the chorus, and the outro I thought:
“This is about sex and you tried to slip it by us.”

So either, you can read along and overthink it with me.
New rare video footage to support my vision will be delivered!

OR you can just take Jon’s word for it and keep it at that, and look for a video on YouTube called:
Bon Jovi | Live at Borgata Casino | Atlantic City 2004
by hAnD90 uploaded in January 2019
And start at 29 minutes 20 seconds.

This was the introduction from Jon Bon Jovi to Miss Fourth of July on the Borgota concert: 

Jon introduces Miss Fourth of July, as follows:
“This is a little something I wrote back in ’91 and a period I now refer to as the grey period. It was cloudy for about two years of my life.
It was a very interesting time because we were trying to figure out who the hell we were, as people.
The twenties were now behind me, the thirties were just coming on strong. Innocence seemed to have all be gone. But fortunately for us we got over that hump
[…]
But this is written during that period that if we didn’t get over this hump at that time we would have in fact been another one of those casualties that you hear about on “Where are the now?”.
[…]
So if you can just imagine I am in this little teeny eight by eight bedroom in Malibu California, probably either drunk or hung over, with a rented piano, and I happen to like the song more now because it doesn’t hurt as bad.
Check out the lyric, it is called The Fourth of July.”

Now, if at this point, you’re shaking your head at me.
“How can you possibly see this song as being about sex?”
Then I m going to cut you short because I too didn’t see it as being about that at this point.

Just like you, I docilely listened to the acoustic song with Jon and Richie on guitar and David Bryan on accordion.
And weeped with them over losing their youth, as the price they paid for growing up touring pretty much back to back from 1985 to 1990.
No wonder they were in crisis.

Yet there was probably already a sign that they would make it because contrary to other, I would almost say contrary to “most”, hardrock bands in the 80s, the Bon Jovi members were not addicted to heroin. 

The band Bon Jovi started in the early 80s, with Jon Bon Jovi delivering enough material for an entire record all by himself, before (after launching the single Runaway) they pulled together a band.

With their self-titled album (1984), their second album 7800 Fahrenheit (1985), their biggie Slippery When Wet (1986), and the absolutely brilliant shockingly good successor to that New Jersey (1988), under their belt and non.stop.touring.
– New Jersey was in fact even often “excused for” not being that good because they didn’t have time to properly innovate their music, while also touring –
that when that final tour finally ended early 1990;
Of course they were beat.
Of course they were stressed out.
Of course there was going to be a massive withdrawal from touring for years on end, that would pull each and everyone of the members into their personal versions of hell.

Of course it was going to be a time of staring into the heart of darkness.
Alone.

But! 
This did not mean that fans from Jon Bon Jovi, would have to miss out.
Early 1990, he joined the cast of Young Guns 2 on location, and started writing for the soundtrack.

The script and emotions it provided for him, gave him not just a sense of direction on what the music should be about;
It also gave him a mask.

He was not Jon Bon Jovi the singer who had probably lost his entire band and himself;
He was writing music to fit the script.
He later said he had put a lot of himself in that album Blaze of Glory, but at the time he hid behind the cowboy hat and leather clothes. 

So there I was (current day me, not 1990 Jon) listening to Miss Fourth of July and reading the lyrics.
And I stumble upon a lyric that makes me think that he did not have real sex, but only watched (a stripper, or a couple, or two women, something along those lines), and yet someone (I think his wife) was upset with him anyway.

This was the lyric, it is in the first verse:
“For a night I just watched and you walked out of here”

I don’t consider myself a knowledgeable Bon Jovi fan.
Just last Sunday I mixed up the intros from It’s My Life and Livin’ On A Prayer.

So I will never even remotely suggest you should take me seriously, as far as facts about the band go. I m not a typing encyclopedia, and often even fail to Google things.
But there is one area I am an expert at:
Sex.

And with Jon Bon Jovi, this usually means that I have a neck for when he’s talking about cheating. And even when I later find he was doing it “in character”, like in Always which was originally for a movie so it’s not his own story, I can’t imagine that he did not pour from his own experience when he wrote that.
But this is not about Always.
This is about Miss Fourth of July, that we are supposed to take at face value about being about an entirely sexless coming of age, or maybe coming of fame is more accurate, theme of a rock star finally returning home with almost Odysseus like pathos, suddenly realizing he no longer is the man who left, filled with hopes and dreams.

“For a night I just watched and you walked out of here”
This “baby-level” Bon Jovi fan, who cannot tell the difference between It’s my Life and Livin’on a Prayer intros, thinks Jon Bon Jovi tried to stay faithful within limits, yet got in an argument with his wife about it anyway. 

That’s the baseline I got when I started this blogpost. I had honestly not thought any further.
Until I started typing out that entire speech, which was a lot of work, I think I easily spent an hour on it.
And in that hour, the tiny bedroom in Malibu remark started to look very familiar. Even though Jon was referring to a two year period, I was suddenly certain this referred to the mansion he had rented, which he called “Disgraceland” and where he stayed when he recorded the Blaze of Glory record.
It is also the location where my favorite Jon Bon Jovi interview was located:
An MTV interview with Julie Brown, which was supposed to air on Independence Day.

(if you’re currently shouting “But that’s on the fourth of July!”; That is correct!) 

To mark the occasion Julie was dressed in America’s independence colors red and blue.
“Now I see where the white is,” Jon says as he lifts her skirt.

As soon as I saw this interview, which was early 2019, I knew for a fact that we had watched a genuine sexual attraction between Jon and Julie.
That it was both staged, and real.
Julie and Jon were hiding in plane sight.

click the photo to go to the playlist of this interview

The only problem this presents, now that I know that Miss Fourth Of July was written in the backlash of a one-night stand, or encounter, with someone special yet you can’t make it work, was that I no longer understood the sentence:
“For a night I just watched and you walked out of here”
I no longer know what that sentence means.

Yet Jon being messed up after Julie left, does explain many other lyrics. 
“Don’t say we never tried”
“I ain’t too proud to let you see tears fall from these eyes”
“Just look me in the eyes and say it meant nothing at all”
“Nothing but a heavy hit of heartbreak ;
A handful of blues”

And I know who Miss Fourth of July is.

” I used to live, but now I survive”

It took eight words.
Eight words to make us cry.

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer
.

new: BOX SET SERIES

Miss Fourth of July
is the fifth post in
The Box Set Series

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Playlist box set:

Song by Song – Bon Jovi 2020 Original Pre-Covid Album – a twitter thread –

video: “Beautiful Drug” opens the album Bon Jovi intended to release in March 2020

alternative cover created by Jimmy Flint. Click the photo for the original tweet

After writing a small review on the original album 2020 by Bon Jovi,
as it was supposed to be released in March,
I’m now going to do a song by song review, of that album.

1 song per tweet.
.
Let’s go!
.
song 1: Love is a Beautiful Drug
.

Had the world still made sense in October 2020 the upbeat, catchy “Love is a Beautiful Drug” would still be the opening song.

Including at 2:30 the best “bridge” of the 21st century:
.


song 2 Unbroken

I never knew what people meant when they tweeted “don’t @ me” after a statement.
Now I do.

The top heavy, dramatic “Unbroken” is EXACTLY RIGHT –
when listened after “Love is a Beautiful Drug”

song 3 Walls

Is this correct?
Was the “This Is House Is Not For Sale”
2018 bonus track “Walls”,
really meant for the March release of 2020?

It sure is a perfect match.
(for the Oct edition it was dropped)

song 4 Luv Can

Aka
Evidence @jonbonjovi Has Been Telling The Truth When He Said He Had No Idea Livin’ On A Prayer Was Really That Good

Intense and beautiful Luv Can was accidentally dropped for Oct edition of 2020

 

song 5 Lower the Flag

Contemplative song about violence throughout America, and just like many of the other songs a strong and surprising “second half”!

And listen to Jon’s voice!
Its maturity has become an asset

song 6 Story Of Love

Whether we think of our children or of our parents;
Or perhaps of the parents we never had,
the love we could not give or never received;

Most of us will need a moderate stack of Kleenex here

song 7 Brothers in Arms

Strong rock song with lots of guitars!

Really like the building of the pressure with:
“It’s a hard rain that’s gonna fall on the city
Still a hard rain that’s gonna fall on the farm”

song 8 Let it Rain

And here we have the rain dripping straight into the next song!
Themes, words and musical choices used in previous songs, are repeated here.

There was a reason we used to have concept albums.

song 9 Shine

In the light of the epic “Luv Can” being dropped for the 2020 (Oct),
the loss of modest ballad “Shine” seems passable.

Except that it isn’t.

We didn’t wait 4 years to have them drop gems like this.

song 10 Blood In The Water

Was it out of character for @BonJovi to end so strong?
Why else was this magnificent song moved?!

Shark and Satan rich symphonic rock that contains an entire multigenerational novel.

The March edition of Bon Jovi’s 2020, contained 10 songs.
Three were dropped and three were added.

The official “2020” (October edition) is now available on vinyl, cd, and all streaming services.

And I heard they got a Christmas surprise for us 😉

Thank you for reading.

~Suzanne
Rock Star Writer.

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