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Old 10-11-2016, 06:46 AM
Faceman Faceman is offline
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And the infamous RAW-magazine interview:

Article published in RAW-magazine no. 154, July 20th 1994

In a special column on first page of interview the following semi-headlines:

The facts:
-Such has been banned by Jon Bon Jovi from doing any interviews
-Such is perpetually been treated like an ‘after-thought’!
-Jon Bon Jovi tells Such his bass playing “sucks”!
-Co-founding member is not appearing on the new Jovi LP!


Way back in June 1990, we printed a spoof list of ’15 least likely people to be interviewed in RAW’. Topping a roll of dishonour which featured Black Sabbath keyboardist Geoff Nicholls, Chris Johnstone of the Quireboys and Allanah Myles, one name stood proud. Alec John Such of Bon Jovi. It was intended as a bit of a laugh – admittedly a rather cheap one – but everybody knew what we meant. Poor old Alec was the man nobody seemed to know about, or care, too much about.

The media are always on the look-out for a juicy quote from that glamorous and charismatic duo of frontman Jon Bon Jovi and guitarist Richie Sambora, and it has been left to Alec, keyboardist David Bryan and sticksman Tico Torres to scrap amongst themselves for the leftover attention. Come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve ever read a full-blown interview with Alec John Such.

“I haven’t been allowed to do any if you want to know the truth” shrugs the four-stringer, who was in London to participate at the Gibson’s Night Of 100 Guitars anniversary show.“I was told that nobody wanted to talk to me and that came right from Jon’s mouth. For me it’s time for no more secrets. I’m gonna tell it like it is. Anything they said I did probably did, but I would lie for Jon and I have done.”

Does Alec feel that he has compromised himself?
“Put it this way, they say that you can forgive and forget. But you can never forget, you can just forgive.”

Alec’s ‘no interview’ embargo was placed on him for the whole of Bon Jovi’s last world tour. Was he banned because he said the wrong things when he was allowed to talk?
“I never really asked Jon about that, but I did tackle Jon about a lot of other things. For me, that was just the way it was, and I started to believe that people didn’t want to talk to me. After a while I realised it wasn’t true.”

One thing which was sorted out when Bon Jovi re-grouped to prepare the follow-up to 1992’s ‘Keep the faith’ was that Alec would not be playing on it. For a week before Such himself would confirm his non-participation, rumour had suggested that ex-Todd Rundgren bassist Kasim Sultan was taking his place.
“No, I haven’t split up with Bon Jovi. And no, Kasim is not doing the record,” he clarifies.“I’m gonna be doing the tour, but they’re using a guy called Huey MacDonald. I’m not doing the record with them this time, I have no desire to.”

Er …. Why?!
"Jon tells me I suck all the time, and I have no desire to get involved in all that tension again. Because I work better onstage than I do in the studio, it gives me the chance to do what I want to do out side the band. I love being on tour and change will help everyone when I go back because it’ll be fresh again. We still keep in touch and they still send me tapes. I’m just very honest with them now, whereas before I guess I wouldn’t have been quite so truthful.”
So how are relations between yourself and Jon?
“Now when I see Jon he’s fine. He knows I can’t be taken advantage of, although that’s maybe not the right word for it. I’m slowing down to smell the roses, and it’s not like I haven’t done all this stuff before. I never cared to be in the limelight for more than one day a week. Now there’s other things that have a higher priority; I really enjoy doing things like my Gibson bass clinics.
Now it’s a pleasure when I play out with different people,” he continues.“They ask me what kind of equipment I need, how the monitors sound for me. But with my band (Bon Jovi) they say,‘OK make sure Richie sounds good. Is everything alright for Tico?’ I haven’t experienced people caring about my requirements for a long time.”

So basically you became a bit of an after-thought?
“Yeah. But it doesn’t bother me anymore. There’s been a ton of good times. And there will be many more.”

Does Alec think that Bon Jovi have got out of control?
“I don’t really think so,” such says cautiously.“But what I intended it to be and what Jon wanted are two different things. I wanted to have fun, but then those guys wrote a hit song, and now there is so much pressure to keep having hit songs. I’ve always felt that you write a song and *others*(originally in cursive print) will tell you it’s a hit, you don’t write a song to be a hit and tell everyone,‘This is a hit song’.“

What happens if Jon writes a song that Alec hates?
“I don’t think I would say that I didn’t like it. I’m not a writer so I can’t criticise.”
Has he ever wanted to be a songwriter?
“I know how things work, y’know verse-chorus-verse, but that’s a God-given talent that I would know if I had.”

Jon is said to have smirked at the prospect of an Alec John Such solo album.
“I could believe that. But my calling is something totally different.”

Alec had better watch himself, as too many negative comments might just cause Jon to decide he’s not in the touring band either. There’s a million bassists out there, after all.
“When I decided not to be on the record – and it was my decision, which I took in the second week of January – I didn’t think everyone would just go,‘OK’. First off I called the guys who handle my money and asked them if I’d loose my house if that happened,” he explains.“They said as long as I didn’t buy a yacht every week I’d still be able to have a good life.”

OK, enough speculation. Let’s find out a little about Bon Jovi’s bassist. A portrait which appeared in RAW 151’s Jovi pull-out painted him as something of a mystery man. It is duly produced and Such nods quietly in agreement that his date of birth is indeed 14 November 1951. He chuckles when reminded of the T-Shirt he wore at Wembley Arena that said:‘Blow me … And Just Leave!’(“That shirt was a great idea”), but he wants to set the record straight about the eye-patch he wore on the last tour.
“My eye was infected. It was dripping away every night ad I had to put this Vaseline on it,” he claims.“That was the only time anyone ever saw me with an eye-patch. I wasn’t going or a pirate look because that would be nuts – but I *am*(again, originally in cursive) nuts in other ways!”

Such’s other hobbies away from the spotlight are vintage motorcycles and cars, personal computers and he’s also partners in an Australian company that makes turbo-chargers. But his biggest interest is amateur radio, something that stems from seeing roadies using walking-talkies at the Bon Jovi shows. Now that he owns his own set it’s grown into an obsession. He just loves ear-wigging on other peoples’ conversation!
“If people have anything crazy to say they shouldn’t say it on a radio or a cordless phone,” Such maintains.“I’ve heard many, many salacious things over the years. In Nashville we once got a prostitute on the line and she was telling her pimp how she was ripping off the punters. In LA, you start to get all the drug deals and sex phone calls.”

It takes Such several minutes to list all his motorcycles, and he also adds also owns a pair of ‘his and hers’ 1964 Honda Dreams.“You can’t teach people to ride on a Harley because it’s too big,” he explains with a glint in his eye.“They look at the lighter, 50cc version and go,‘It’s so-o-p cute, of course I’ll ride it!’“

OF Course, music is another huge feature of his life. Alec tends not to attend the big-name concerts, but he’s a regular at local New Jersey venues like the Fast Lane where he checks out smaller bands. His future plans include co-managing one particular fledging Florida act that he has already spotted.
“I’ve been spoiled for the big gigs. If I can’t go backstage and just hang out there I don’t usually bother,” he confesses.“If we go together as a band a commotion will sometimes start in the audience, and that’s not fair to the band you’ve gone along to see.”
“But I’ve been listening to new bands like Candlebox, Tool, Soundgarden and Smashing Pumpkins a lot because it’s so refreshing. People are calling it the Grunge scene, but to me it’s just Rock’n’roll getting back to its roots”.
“These bands aren’t embarrassed about what they do onstage; they don’t have to look a certain way and if they don’t have an instrument to make a sound they’ll go (mumbles noise like a didgeridoo), and that is great.”
Many felt that Bon Jovi went too far left of field with ‘Keep The Faith’, but such feels it didn’t go far enough. What he’s heard of the new record – which is “just about all”– suggests it won’t go too far out on a limb.
“I know how Jon writes and I know how Richie writes,” he says.“I put those two guys together. They should be patting me on the back ‘cos without each other they’d still not be writing right. Jon writes cowboy songs, they all start out that way. He needs Richie to harden ‘em up and turn ‘em into Bon Jovi songs.”
Our allotted time is vanishing, but Alec has enjoyed the experience. He has his bass clinics, he manages his band, he’d like to be more than just an anonymous face at the end of the row … but not a great deal more.
“This is a new facet of what I do,” he beams.“I’d like people to know a little more about me. I’d like them to come up to me on the street and be able to say something more than,‘Hey, you’re in Bon Jovi’.”
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