Pittsburgh Post Gazette article
|Bon Jovi thrills fans with a big show
Jon Bon Jovi never needed the same caliber of song as elder arena rockers like Springsteen, Seger or Petty. He had that great hair and a million-dollar smile.
Twenty-five years into his career, he still does, as demonstrated Wednesday night in the first of two shows in 10 days at the Mellon Arena. Bon Jovi, in black leather jacket and black jeans, delivered all the chills and thrills of an arena spectacle while sparing everyone the burden of having to think. Message boards will not be lighting up today with folks complaining that he got "all heavy on us."
The purity of Bon Jovi is oversized, not-overly-original rock songs about love and faith with sing-song choruses and wanky, time-tested licks from Richie Sambora. They hit the stage with the title track to "Lost Highway," a fiddle slicing through the heartland rocker. What's up with both Jersey boys trying to sound like John Mellencamp these days?
With hits to spare, they quickly time-warped back to two blockbusters: the anthemic "You Give Love a Bad Name" and "Runaway," complete with the rinky-dink New Wave keyboards. From there they jumped in and out of hair-metal hits ("Bad Medicine," "Livin' on a Prayer"), faux-cowboy songs ("Blaze of Glory" and "Wanted Dead or Alive") and latter departures ("(You Want To) Make a Memory").
There was such palpable love flowing between Bon Jovi and screaming fans of all ages, you had to assume that if he had time, he would have sat down and bought each and every one of them a beer (a Coke for the teenagers). By contrast, even Springsteen, the ultimate Everyman, kind of seems like he has somewhere else to be.
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