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Bon Jovi: Sweaty, energetic, people-pleasing rockers 18 May 2011
Atlanta Journal Constitution

Source: Atlanta Journal Constitution

Any skeptics wondering how Bon Jovi, a band nearly 30 years into its career, could have posted the highest grossing tour of 2010 got their proof Saturday night.

As frontman Jon Bon Jovi has noted, a string of musical fads have exploded and dissolved in three decades, yet the Jersey boys once regarded as a disposable hair band continue to add to their 130 million in worldwide album sales and string of sold out arena dates.

At Philips Arena Saturday, Jon and bandmates Tico Torres and David Bryan, plus Hugh McDonald, the band’s bassist since 1994, and Phil “X” Xenidis, filling in for rehabbing Richie Sambora, proved to nearly 20,000 in the sold-out crowd exactly why Bon Jovi has maintained such a lofty level of success.

They’re an endlessly entertaining, sweat-dripping, hard-working, people-pleasing rock band. And with Aerosmith, Springsteen and The Rolling Stones sidelined at the moment, no veteran act – aside from perhaps U2 – can touch Bon Jovi live.

Opening their 2 ½-hour set with “Lost Highway” and jukebox staple “You Give Love a Bad Name,” the band sounded tight and polished. Jon hardly looks like a guy on the cusp of 50 with his model-handsome appearance, boyish stage demeanor and exhausting stage workout. He’s a rock ‘n’ roll ballerina who might have something in common with Dorian Gray.

And with the absence of Sambora, it appeared he took on more heavy lifting by playing lead electric guitar on a couple of songs, even soloing at the end of “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead.”


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