Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008: The Year in Review

A new year makes you think back over the happenings of the last year. And what a year it was!!

OF COURSE it's all about Bon Jovi. So, the top 5 highlights ...? (in no particular order)

1. Meeting up with my great German friends in Chicago and then Philadelphia (with a little pilgrimage to a particular condo building ... LOL). I'm counting the days til you get here in February!

2. A weekend of awesome shows, the best frickin' pizza ever and laughter with Fiction Mistress, Goddess Hathor and Willow.

3. Grabbing Jon's leg while in the pit in Vegas to let him know that the Soul won the game and were 7-0. (Sorry, Jonny, I know I scared you there for a minute...but it was good news, huh!?) And, we all know how the season ended!

4. Jon seeing my sign in Central Park and reacting (thanks Willow for capturing that on film!) Poor guy saw it at every concert I attended ... that was 21 times. Oyyy!

5. Obie trying to "save the day" when we couldn't get the concert broadcast into the Wachovia Center after hours of trying. I will always remember him pulling out his phone and waking Rew up just to try to help me.

There were a lot of other great moments centered around the Soul (wahhhhh), Jovi friends, great music and lots of smiles.

May 2009 bring all of you what you wish for! Now, off to have a little champagne!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

That's Why I Keep Coming Back ...

So, sitting at my computer this morning on what seems like day number 56,793,546,271,736 of my frickin' job search, I was listening to WPLJ.

I usually don't listen to the radio because of the sad state of the playlists ... I mean, seriously I can take a little David Cook and Coldplay, but EVERY OTHER song ...?! Is that really necessary?

Anyway, I was shocked out of my job listing coma by the opening bars of "Always." I stopped mid-email and just sat and listened. Closing my eyes, I could almost see it in my head .. Jon singing his guts out, the mic lean, the emotion.

At that moment, I remembered again why I love this band and Jon Bon Jovi, in particular. Its been hard to remember that lately with all the silliness that has been swirling around the fan club, etc. If you don't realize how silly things have been, kindly read FM's post yesterday about Bon Jovi merchandise - seriously, y'all the funniest thing I have read in a while. Must get me some of those Russian Wobble Dolls! LOL

In any case, I urge you to go back and listen to some of your favorite Jovi songs, it will excite you all over again.

.....but now back to reality, David Cook .... AGAIN ...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Twas the night before Christmas ...

And all thru my head,
I just could not stop thinking
of Jonny in bed!

(sorry, I usually keep it pretty clean on this blog ...
but it is Christmas and a girl has gotta dream!)

In any case, it IS the night before Christmas, so here's a little holiday cheer ... (and Jon Bon Jovi in a Santa hat can always make you smile!)

You know ... as much as we malign one Bongiovi brother (that would be Matt), we've gotta appreciate the other one for giving us little tidbits like this. So, I would like to publicly thank Anthony for all the glimpses into the backstage world and catching great memories of life on the road.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

So ... what is there to do in NYC on Christmas Eve? Tons! But for me, I think its gonna be service at The Cathedral of St. John the Divine -- I really go for the music -- lots of brass, organ and a huge choir. And, its virtually impossible to get into St. Patrick's on Christmas Eve so its the uptown cathedral tonight. (Hey! Maybe we'll even have a Christmas miracle and Notre Dame will win tonight ...? Nah, maybe too much to wish for...)

Oh, a quick note to my ff readers ... I actually have been working on writing again after a bit of a hiatus. So, you can expect new chapters of Vienna over the next few days. ;-) But in the meantime, if you aren't already reading it, I highly recommend The Big Easy by my dear friend, The Fiction Mistress. That girl can frickin' write!

And in closing, just wanted to wish all of you out there who read this blog a very happy, healthy holiday season. Thank you for your support and your comments.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Just a Damn Good Christmas Song

So, I was standing in line at Staples -- fyi, there is a line for everything in NYC ... people just line up out of habit, doesn't matter what it is ...

Anyway, I was standing in line at Staples -- btw, does a USB cable really need to be $30? That's highway robbery in my opnion ...

ANYWAY ... try number 3 ... I was standing in line at Staples when one of my all-time favorite Christmas songs came on. It certainly made waiting much more palatable.

The song? "I Wish Every Day Could be Like Christmas" by our beloved Bon Jovi. And its not one of my favorites just because its Jon and he sounds awesome - its because of that old time rock-n-roll feel, its because the lyrics are just so perfect. And because like I have said before, I am a sucker for anything in 6/8 or 12/8.

Take a listen if you don't know the song and see what you think.

{Here's a live clip from one of the HAND concerts in New Jersey - three amazing sold-out shows that simply rocked ... oh and one helluva great canned food drive!}

P.S. I heard from one of my Soul staff buddies ... we should be singing "Dry County" cause all the money's gone, all the jobs are gone ... still they're hanging on ...

note to Jon Bon Jovi: I hope you do something for these kids 'cause this whole thing sucks ... no way around it.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Philadelphia Soul ... oh how I loved thee!

This is going to be a bit long and rambly, so just stay with me ...

Well, it became official today with the announcement of the cancellation of the 2009 AFL season. After all the speculation last week, I am disappointed but not surprised at this course of action.

Of course the question by many a Bon Jovi fan was about whether the celebration/concert would still take place. Well, rumors are still swirling about that ... so its a wait-and-see. But, in reality, I don't even care about that so much anymore.

My biggest concern is what about the staff and the players whose livelihoods have just been pulled out from under them? As someone who has been on the job search for months now, I know first-hand what a difficult market this is. So, I care about Jason, Steve, Liam, Heather, Mark, Sara, Matt, Tyler and all the staff that busted their butts -- and who, regardless of the level of exhaustion or frustration, always put a positive take on whatever obstacle or fire that would come up.

And to the players, so many of whom became more than just guys on a field, but guys in our communities and in our hearts: they can never take the championship away from you.

So, before I wrap this up ... just thought I'd take a moment to relive some of the better Soul times.

There is NOTHING like beating Dallas ... in the old, sweaty Spectrum on a stormy night. It was electric!

Can't beat a guy who can play both sides of the ball, start a new charity initiative AND has a good sense of humor. Gotta love Mike Brown!

And who could forget that impromptu celebration in the parking lot!? Now, THAT was amazing!

Well, Coach, we got our trophy and its ours until someone wins it away from us!

PLEASE NOTE, I understand that the League is hoping to return in 2010. And if they do, I will be there. But for right now ... we are left with only hopes.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Yes, Virginia, There is ...

Holy cow, I think I just found heaven ...

I was talking to a friend last night and he was raving about a place downtown that only serves rice pudding. I am a big lover of rice pudding so my ears perked up right away. I remember hearing rumblings about such a place at one point ... but then something about it closing. I have been to the all-cereal "restaurant" in Philadelphia and that was fun, but this had potential to be something truly great, so I was happy when he confirmed that it did exist.

So, in the cold, I trekked down to Spring Street to see what I could find.

Of course, I had to have a few samples just to get the flavor of the place ... my first - Sex Drugs and Rocky Road.

They have a few seasonal flavors as well - the best name in the bunch being the Kiss my Anisette XMas Pudding. But, I found Don Cappucino was particularly yummy.

I'm looking forward to Summer when I can try Rest in Peach (yet, another RIP ... see my previous blog about R.I.P. ... on second thought, maybe not while we are talking about food ... LOL)

Anyway, so the next time you're visiting Jon Bon Jovi ... oh, I mean New York City ... stop by and check it out. 37 Spring Street (between Mott and Mulberry.)

P.S. Also try the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory when you're here - its fantastic, too. The Green Tea Ice Cream is wonderful. :-)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Jon and Johnny

It is no secret that there are two Jersey musicians I absolutely love more than anything ... Jon (Bon Jovi) and Southside Johnny.

So, if two are good ... four must be better right?! Here is a clip of one of my absolute favorite SSJ songs performed by JBJ, SSJ, RS and BB. Quite simply fantastic.

I was in search of some inspiration yesterday and while surfing around YouTube found this incredible video of SSJ and JBJ in 1994. Damn, Jon looks so frickin' happy here - makes me smile. Take a look at this.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Just Can't Get the Creative Juices Flowing ...

For some reason, I am totally uninspired to write today. I think it may be the emotional drain of all that back-and-forth with regard to the Arena Football League. So, when all else fails ... what does one do? Look at pictures of Jon Bon Jovi.

(to the AFL) "Don't you even THINK about canceling the season!"

"Did anyone see me take that extra cookie?"

"Since y'all are looking at my butt anyway!"

"Hey Richie, let's pose for the new Bon Jovi action figures!"

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Note to Self ... DO NOT drink Mountain Dew at 11:30pm

I made the mistake of having something to drink while talking on the phone to the Fiction Mistress last night. By the way, she is fine in sunny Mexico and I am green with envy having heard about the hot tub out on her terrace. And, Samantha, your birthday present should be waiting for you when you get home. ;-)


Its now 2:41am and I can't sleep. I'm a pretty serious coffee drinker so I'm surprised that a little can of Mountain Dew would have such an effect (or is it affect) on me.

In any case, it gives me time to "dew" this post about my beloved Philadelphia Soul.

I loved this billboard ... from a few years ago.

So ... I was walking around Midtown when I saw the ESPN ticker and read "Arena Football League cancels 2009 season." I simply stood there in shock ... right in the middle of Times Square ... tears running down my cheeks.

There had been rumors for several days to this affect (or is it effect ... ha ha) but nothing official. OK ... before you get all worked up - there is still nothing official other than that they are continuing to look at their options.

I have been a loyal and fervent fan of the Soul since its inception. Even when I lived in Cincinnati, I came up for the games ... by Greyhound bus no less. (By the way, that is 17 hours each way with a layover in Pittsburgh in the middle of the night. They weren't necessarily fun - but I don't regret a minute of those trips.)

I have always loved what the team stood for, the guys who play - not for the money, but for the love of the game, the staff who works so incredibly hard and the impact the organization has had on the community.

And, as a result, I tried to introduce every person I ever met to the team and the sport - even having a Soul-oriented birthday party in Ohio where we collected 300 pairs of socks for one of the charity initiatives.

And trust me, I have been paid back tenfold for my loyalty by meeting some really amazing people that either work for the organization, play on the team or are fans. Soul fans are incredible.

So, with Christmas just around the corner, I know what I'm asking Santa for. Hopefully, he is listening and we will soon receive the good news that all is right in Soulville.

P.S. And, thank you, Jon Bon Jovi for putting your heart .. and soul .. into this whole endeavor. The man has worked his butt off (though, thank goodness that's only a figure of speech) for the league - events, endless media, constant promotion - he even was willing to don a Dallas Desperados jersey ... Dallas ... argh!

Hey, Jon ... I have a jacket that looks just like that! LOL

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Going Down in a Blaze of Glory

So ... it has been quite a day.

Last night I noticed that my computer was moving rather slowly ... I really didn't think anything of it at the time. Then, when I woke up this morning the whole thing had crashed ... no internet, no files, no nothing - just a big blue empty screen!

Of course, I completely freaked out. Remember Carrie's reaction on "Sex in the City" when her computer died? Imagine that - multiplied.

So, I packed up my computer and shlepped down to Best Buy near Lincoln Center. I didn't know if they could help me, but I had to try something - anything.

All that kept running through my head as the Geek Squad was making faces at my computer and pushing buttons and plugging and unplugging things was Jon Bon Jovi singing "I'm going dooooowwwwwn in a blaze of glory...."

Then, as time continued to pass by ever-so-slowly, the song changed and I found myself humming "Its gonna take a miracle to save us this time ..."

But, in the end ... the Geeks totally saved the day and I still have my files, my pictures and all the fan fic I've been collecting (shhhhhhh.)

SO ... lesson learned. I bought an external hard drive and am now backing everything up - though the Geek's parting words as I skipped out of the store were ... "Hey! This drive only has room for 285,000 Bon Jovi photos - you might need to scale back a little."


Monday, December 8, 2008

Sell Out or Smart Business...?

An article on Yahoo caught my attention today ... something Yahoo rarely does.

It was about rock stars "selling out" by allowing their songs and/or images to be used in commercials or in some other way degrading their music. A few of the culprits they named - Bob Seger, Pete Townshend, Bono, Axl Rose (ok .. I'm not so upset about that one) and, get this, John Lennon. John Lennon? Ok ... whatever.

Anyway, this has been long a topic of discussion in the music world.

I remember back in school when superstar violinist Gil Shaham decided to go on the Weather Channel and play Vivaldi's Four Seasons. Students at Juilliard were in an uproar - oh, to be young and idealistic. Bottom line, he had a recording to promote - and there were already many, many recordings of the Vivaldi out there. Whatcha gonna do? Well, in his case - his talent is so immense, he was able to come out the other side with his reputation intact. Thank goodness.

But, that was my first glimpse into the reality that it is the music business -- believe me, that is a hard lesson to learn.

Anyway, some Bon Jovi fans have been unhappy that Jon and Richie allowed the State of New Jersey to use "Who Says You Can't Go Home" as the music for a tourism ad and that there has been an onslaught of merchandise over the last couple of years - everything from the standard magnets and pins to wine, barware and a Christmas tree ornament. (For the record, the line of wines from Celebration Cellars is pretty good ... and the etched bottles are beautifully done ... c'mon you had to know I'd get the wine. But ... a trailer hitch? Not so sure about that one.)

Still and yet, you've gotta find a balance between keeping the fans happy, making a living and promoting the product -- umm...yes, its art, but its still a product. Ironically, a pianist friend and I were talking just the other day about the fact that Juilliard is, in all reality, a trade school. Wonder how the administration would feel about us saying that ...? P.S. Sometime soon I'll write a little about the bassoon ... since y'all are asking what the hell is that thing you play? ;-)

ANYWAY ... time to wrap this up. And what better way to wrap this up than with a picture of our boys "at work"?

It may be a job - but it looks like a damn great one.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

GIANTS Win the Division!

So, I joined a bunch of people downtown at the Mad Hatter Saloon to watch the Giants/Eagles game. It was a great venue and we all had a wonderful time ... well, except for the whole football game part. It was just painful ... Hixon should have caught that ball. Talk about shooting yourself in the leg ... sorry, that was bad. ;-)

BUT ... THANK YOU, PITTSBURGH (who would have ever thought I would say that?!) With the incredible come-from-behind win to beat Dallas, my beloved New York Football Giants win the division. Woo hoo!

And in celebration of the Steelers helping us out ... here's a nice picture of HRH (Jon Bon Jovi) in a Pittsburgh jersey. [This is from the Have A Nice Day summer stadium tour.]

P.S. And talking about surprise comeback victories ... hey Hath .. how 'bout them Patriots!?

New York vs Philadelphia

So, today is a the big game. The Giants can clinch the division with a win over the Eagles. (Sorry to my dear friends in Philadelphia - but remember, we still have a football championship to celebrate in February! GO SOUL!)

Speaking of the Soul ... nice how Jon incorporates his two teams in his attire ... LOL ... (and never misses the opportunity to do a little marketing...)

P.S. Now, Jon and Jaws, if you could please focus on getting Matt D'O back, we could all sleep easier at night. ;-)

In any case, I'm looking forward to the game today - and Jon, if you're not using your tickets, I can still get to the stadium ... hint hint hint.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Proof That Jon Bon Jovi is Just a Normal Guy ....

I usually do not post pictures of Jon's family, but this cracked me up. Does he not look like he's completely lost? And JUST like a normal guy to not ask for directions!

I guess I should give him the benefit of the doubt ... when you get South of Houston, directions
can get a little dicey. ;-)

P.S. Thanks Steffi!

Bill Belichick ... No BS ... and No Bully

See! I told you he's a nice guy. You can't fake a smile like that. (And you must have a sense of humor to wear that tie! Bill ... what the heck?!)

Say what you want about his press conferences - they actually make me laugh. "We're moving on. We're moving on..."

But, you had to know anyone that likes Bon Jovi songs that much could not be as negative and nasty as the media makes him out to be.

He takes his job very seriously - ain't nothing wrong with that. And he's extremely good at it - ain't nothing wrong with that either. And he's made mistakes - it happens to all of us.

I don't know why, but there's something endearing about Bill - and this is coming from a Giants fan. (Speaking of which ... Plaxico Burress ... not so endearing.)

So, anyway ... sorry, Bill, the cat is out of the bag ... and who says nice guys always finish last?

If you think I'm all alone in my assessment, read this:
Seattle Times article

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Just Because...

I had to post this picture from my friend Sandy in Germany... how can you not just love that face?!

I am in heaven ...

Today's lesson: The Joy of Peruvian Food

One of the best things about living in the "greatest city in the universe" (hey! its not just me ... I'm quoting HRH* here) is that you can find just about any cuisine your heart desires.

I was crushed ... and I mean CRUSHED when I found out my favorite Peruvian place had closed. (One of the downsides of NYC ... you find something you love ... there one day and gone the next.) BUT, today I found a new Peruvian place and now my ceviche-starved body is happy as a clam. YUM!!

And bonus, the waiter told me about two other places in the city to try as well. And, no, Samantha ... I did not try to pick up the waiter. (I dated a Peruvian for several years ... he was quite yummy too!)

So ... what is the picture above? Its a dish called "papa rellena" ... imagine mashed potatoes stuffed with a fantastic mixture of ground beef, red onions, hard-boiled egg, black olives and cilantro. Then, drop the potato concoction in the deep fryer for a few minutes ... that's papa rellena.

Why Peruvian food you ask?

Well, I had the pleasure of spending an extended period of time in Peru several years ago - where I met aforementioned yummy Peruvian (YP). Being a musician, I have been blessed with the opportunity to travel to all kinds of places ... and I was always of the mindset "have passport, will travel."

So, when a former colleague of mine asked me to go down to play in the Lima Philharmonic (Orquesta Filarmónica de Lima), I jumped at the opportunity. I absolutely fell in love with the country, the people, the food, the landscape (you've got rainforest, desert, mountains, AND the ocean), the artisans, the llama (yes, they do really spit! But, damn you can get a nice sweater out of 'em!)

Unfortunately, the relationship with YP didn't last, but my love for Peru did. I mean, seriously, look at this ....

Is that not just beautiful?!?!

* HRH - for those who aren't aware is .. His Royal Hotness .. or Jon Bon Jovi.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I'm in another one of those picture moods ...

Caption: "Now, what were the words to this song?"

"Hey God ... what the hell is going on?"

"TOUCH.....DOWN.....SOUL!" (if you have ever heard Ari Wolfe you know how to say this!)
(Happy camper!)

"Not a happy camper!"

I understand promoting the league ... but Jon ... a DALLAS jersey? Was that REALLY necessary?!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

R.I.P. ... means something TOTALLY different in NYC

Okay ... when I started this blog, I did say that this would be an ongoing dialogue of the crazy and chaotic ... right? That it wouldn't ALL be about Bon Jovi.

And today's post is definitely not Jovi related ... just warning y'all.

SO -- R.I.P. ... New York Style.

The City of New York, in its undeniably unique way, has developed a new online system for tracking ... ready for this ... rats. Yes, those furry, dirty, can-be-confused-with-a-Chihuahua rodents.

It is called the Rat Information Portal. No kidding ... R.I.P.

Portal? Sounds like something from Star Trek ... if so, couldn't they just beam them up to somewhere else?!

On the website, you can view what the level of rat population is in your neighborhood, report on recent sitings (I did not yet post about the large one I saw in the subway a few days ago that I named Henry).

You can even blog about the best way to rid your apartment or business of them ... so I guess the R.I.P is supposed to lead to more cases of actual R.I.P. (Rest in Peace)

ONLY in New York. Gotta love this town!

P.S. And since you all are expecting a little Bon Jovi ... here's a pic of Jon's reaction to this story having now moved to NYC ... LOL

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Fast Food ... New York Style

So, my dear friend Samantha was marvelling at how us "Northern girls" could put up with the cold. How? By living in a city like New York.

So today, after a not-so-pleasant trip to the doctor (trust me, you don't want to know!) I headed back to the West Side for some comfort food. For me, that's Zabar's.

If you have never heard of Zabar's, let me educate you.

Imagine aisle after crowded aisle of all the wonderful food you can imagine - knishes, cheeses, strudels, salami, breads, fresh pastas, homemade soups, two zillion kinds of coffees and teas. Sounds great, huh?

But wait, the best part is still coming. Then there's the whole "prepared foods" section ... cause you know most of us NYers don't cook. We assemble and we heat. So, what's for dinner? How about a beautiful piece of salmon with wild rice and a vegetable souffle for ... $8.55. Just put in the micro for 2 minutes and you're done. Now, THIS is fast food!

So ... that is how we survive in the North!

P.S. And if you're not hungry for food, keep this in mind ... we have a yummy resident rock star.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Bon Jovi in Macy's Today ...

Ha! Made you look!

Anyway, so I walked into Macy's Herald Square today to once again get lost in the handbag section ... ahhhhh ... and what comes on the overhead system? A little Jovi of course ... (You Want to) Make A Memory.

At first I thought it was the beautiful Coach bag singing to me ... (wouldn't you want to make some memories carrying that around?!) ... but then I was pleased to find out it was actually our boys. LOL

Anyway .. I must apologize for neglecting this blog for the past couple of weeks. As most of you know, I recently got my ass back to NYC and things have been a bit chaotic. I am not crazy about the apartment EXCEPT the fact that it has two huge double closets ... a total rarity in the city. Now, I don't even need to curb my shoe obsession!

Wouldn't that Coach purse look awfully nice in that big closet ...? (by the way, its called the Bleecker Street bag ... which is not so far from Mercer Street if you know what I mean ...)

So, if you have never had the opportunity to visit the Big Apple ... what the hell are you waiting for?!?

And if you're coming thru, drop me a line and we can have a pretzel from a vendor on Central Park West. :-)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Does Anybody Really Fall in Love Anymore?

No no no ... this is not going to be a sappy or sarcastic rant about relationships and "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" ... though I don't think that's too far from the truth ... LOL

Today's post is about this ... as a musician who plays music other people write, I am always astounded by the amount that a composer or songwriter creates ... much of which has never been performed.

We were all so blessed when Obie (and the guys) put together 100 Million Bon Jovi Fans Can't Be Wrong. It allowed us a look into just some of those unknown songs ... but we all know there are so many more out there.

What about those songs that Jon and Richie wrote that that were recorded by someone else....? When do we get to hear those? (like We All Sleep Alone and the above-referenced Does Anybody .... both recorded by Cher.) Makes you wonder ... what other songs are out there that we don't know about ...?

Any others that come to mind for you ...?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Ring Them Bells, Ring Them Loud

Ring them bells, ring them loud.
Let them ring h
ere and now.
Just reach out

And ring the bells of freedom.

When your world's crashing down,
Like you've lost every round,
Stand your ground,
And ring the bells of freedom.

Bells of Freedom
Bon Jovi - Have A Nice Day

Today is one of the most important days in our nation's history. And, it only seems fitting that I get to vote in Philadelphia, the cradle of democracy in our country. Here's hoping we all don't have to live thru what we had to after the last election...

Anyway ... BRAVO has been having a West Wing marathon this past week. Damn, what ever happened to good television? And how many of us would have been happy to write in Jed Bartlett for President?

This morning they aired the episode with Jon Bon Jovi. I am so happy he had the opportunity to be a part - even a small one - of that show. I do believe, however, that they could have featured him a whole lot more. I know time was limited and the band was in the midst of a tour - but here is a guy who is knowledgeable about the system and an incredible proponent for volunteerism and philanthropy.

And in that case, his preferred candidate actually won ... unlike Jon's last couple of times out (though I do tend to remind people, we did actually elect Al Gore.) In any case, here's hoping his candidate wins tonight.

So ... if you haven't yet ... GET OUT AND VOTE. Yes, your voice needs to be heard (trust me, I know ... I was living in Ohio last election ... oyyyyy.)

P.S. If you haven't renewed your Soul tickets yet, now is the time!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

No Such Thing as Perfection ....?

We've often been told that perfection doesn't exist. Do me a favor ... watch this video ... and then think about it again ...

I can't even count all the ways this performance is perfect - from the emotion of the song (I'm a sucker for anything in 12/8 or 6/8), to the incredible crowd, to the way the wind blows thru David's hair, to Richie's dark faraway "lost in another world" look, to Tico's cool, calm demeanor ... and, of course, then there's Jon. Simply, Jon.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Tuesday Trivia #3

Question: What non-Jovi 80s "hair band" hit song was supposedly written in the living room of Bon Jovi's Jersey shore apartment?

I can still remember,
When I was just a kid.
When friends were friends forever,
And what you said was what you did ...

Through the years and miles between us,
It's been a long and lonely ride.
But if I got that call in the dead of the night,
I'd be right by your side.

Blood on Blood
Bon Jovi - New Jersey

Its hard to believe sometimes that Bon Jovi is 25 years old ... that can't be ... because that would make me ... well ... no longer in my 20s, lets put it that way.

When you think about how much has changed in the last two decades, it boggles the mind. From world events (I remember the night The Wall came down like it was yesterday) to the advancement of technology (I recently unearthed my Walkman.)

And yet, as much as things change, things stay the same. Maybe that is why Bon Jovi's songs continue to resonate with so many of us ... the themes really never go away ... friendship, love, loss, optimism, challenge.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Why So Many Bon Jovi Concerts?

The Lost Highway tour started a year ago today ... man, it seems like a long time ago now.

So ... I went to 18 shows this tour (21 if you count the three quasi-tour shows in Puerto Rico, Tiger Jam in Vegas and the free Central Park one.) Why, you ask? Yes, my bank account is asking the same thing!

Now, some of you reading this already understand the answer to this question. But for those of you who don't ... let me try to explain.

First, there's the body of songs over the last 25 years. Few bands have such a history ... and you never know what you might end up with on any given day. And when you hear those rarely performed songs, they live in your memory hearing Dry County for the first time in a decade at Giants Stadium during the Have a Nice Day tour. And you end up kicking yourself for not being at that concert where they did song x, y or z .. for me its This Ain't A Love Song ... I refuse to miss the Europe leg next time ... Sandy, Rike, Beate and Steffi ... make room in the car! ;-)

Second, there's the fact that they are great musicians. And who wouldn't want to see artists at the top of their game as much as humanly possible? Sure, I've been there when things have gone a little askew (read: also memories that last a lifetime) but that is the JOY of live performance.

Third, there is the pure energy that comes from the stage. Its contagious. Sometimes musicians are afraid to use the word "entertain" because it somehow detracts from the seriousness of the profession ... this is often the case in the classical music world. (Hello people! We are all in the same marketplace fighting for the public's time, interest and money....but, again, I digress ...)

The truth of the matter is, anyone who basically gets up on a stage is there to engage others ... if that weren't the case, they could just write book or a magazine article or make a record but never tour. And you have NEVER seen someone perform like Jon Bon Jovi. As each tour passes, my respect for him grows more and more. The man is incredible on stage ... the connection he makes with an audience is like nothing I have seen from anyone else ... ok ... maybe Bill Clinton.

Then there's all those other things - I have a lot of friends at these concerts, I get to travel to different places, I get to discover different cultures, etc. But in the end, the real reason I go...?

It just makes me happy. Plain and simple.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Soul Did It First

A lot of people have asked about my thoughts on this issue. So, here it is publicly ... this is my stand once and for all.

This week was a big one in Philadelphia ... it is the first time in forever that the city has a team in a "world" championship game. (Ummm...not true, exactly.) I, of course, use quotes around world because afterall, the World Series is an American event. But, alas, that is not the purpose of this post.

The truth of the matter is that the Philadelphia Soul paved the way for any good that will be coming the city's way in terms of sports success.

Yes, the team may only have just celebrated its fifth anniversary - complete with bad "slogo" (a cross between a logo and a slogan) ... sorry, Jon ... I know you liked it, but really, it was just awful...but I digress...

In a short period of time, the team has had an incredible impact on the community (both in Philly and elsewhere), built a loyal fan base, gone thru some hard growing pains, and yes, won a "world" championship.

Some in Philly would say its not a real championship because its not one of the big four (Phillies, Sixers, Flyers and Eagles.) Now, I haven't lived in Philly that long but from what I see, the definition of a Philadelphia sports team seems to include heartbreaking losses, bad coaching, bad officiating, bad facilities, bad press (I don't mean negative press - I mean lack of coverage sometimes), bad decisions by the league and bad front office management.

If that's what it takes, I think the Soul have paid their dues and can be considered a real sports team. The organization has definitely lived thru all those criteria - though truly bad front office management (with the exception of ticketing) has been limited due to the strong ownership of the team and, until recently, a truly terrific general manager. And, I can't say enough good things about Coach Munsey.

EVERY team goes thru its highs and lows, but I gotta say that this one seems to be experiencing more ups than most in its early years. The staff works hard and the fans are fervent. Are there things to be improved upon? You bet. (See aforementioned quip regarding ticketing.) But, I am proud to have been a season ticketholder from day one and am proud to put my money with an organization that is making a difference. Period. *jumping off soap box now...ouch!*

PS ... One more thing ... umm .. Jon and Jaws - we need to go and get Matt D'O - I'm sure you're working on it ... just putting in my two cents here. ;-)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Today's Video Soundtrack

I didn't come this far to throw the towel in.
I didn't fight this hard to walk away.
If I ain't smart enough to say I'm sorry,
Its just because the words got in the way.

Janie, Don't Take Your Love to Town
Jon Bon Jovi - Destination Anywhere

P.S. Gotta love the "Dallas Sucks" bumper sticker on Jon's guitar. It's a NY Giants thing ... ;-)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

One Liners #2

Possible caption: "I really wish Richie would choose a different cologne!"

One of the things I absolutely love about Jon Bon Jovi is his facial expressions - how he often lets you right into what he's thinking or feeling with just a look. There is no doubt he takes his work, his commitments and such seriously, but somewhere along the way, he also seemed to learn to just relax and have fun.

So ... what is your possible caption for this picture?