January 28, 2011

Starland Ballroom - 1/27/11

Again, I live on the wrong coast. My mantra. I wish I had been there last night! Reports were all good that I've heard -- did any of you go? Share your reviews!

"Help" (Beatles cover)
"So You Wanna Be a Rock and Roll Star" (Byrds cover)
"See See Rider" (traditional blues song associated with Chuck Willis)
"Glad All Over" (Dave Clark Five cover)
"I Can't Help Myself" (Four Tops cover)
"Pretty Woman" (Roy Orbison cover)
"Blue Bayou" (Linda Ronstadt cover, Jon Bon Jovi offstage)
"Nothin' But a Party" (with Southside Johnny)
"Hold on I'm Coming" (with Southside Johnny)
"Start Me Up" (Rolling Stones cover)
"She's Not There" (Zombies cover, Jon Bon Jovi offstage)
"Ooh Child" (Five Stairsteps cover, Jon Bon Jovi offstage)
"Somebody to Love (Jefferson Airplane cover, Jon Bon Jovi offstage)
"Build Me Up Buttercup" (Foundations cover, Jon Bon Jovi offstage)
"Midnight Confessions" (Bobby Bandiera vocals)
"Wanted Dead or Alive"
"We Weren't Born to Follow"
"You Give Love a Bad Name"
"Who Says You Can't Go Home"

"Livin' on a Prayer"
"Treat Her Right" (with Southside Johnny)
"634-5789" (with Southside Johnny)

From NJ.com: Jon Bon Jovi sings for a favorite charity at Starland Ballroom
"You did a good deed," Jon Bon Jovi told the sold-out house at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, at the conclusion of his ninety-minute concert.

He'd led his seventeen(!) piece group through rock classics ("Start Me Up," "So You Wanna Be a Rock and Roll Star") and pop-soul favorites ("Glad All Over" by the Dave Clark Five, Wilson Pickett's "634-5789"), made room onstage for Southside Johnny for a few numbers, and vacated the premises for a fifteen-minute stretch while his band of Friends took center stage.

He did some of his own material, too. Sixteen songs into the show, Bon Jovi gave the crowd what it wanted the most, playing "Wanted, Dead or Alive," "You Give Love a Bad Name," "Who Says You Can't Go Home," and "We Weren't Born to Follow," the lead single from "The Circle" LP. Later, he'd encore with an acoustic -- and considerably defamiliarized -- version of "Living on a Prayer," his signature song.

The show -- not quite a Bon Jovi concert, and not quite a blithe classic pop revue -- was held to benefit the Parker Family Health Center, a clinic in Red Bank. The Center provides primary care, immunization, mammograms, diabetes treatments, and other services for Monmouth County residents (the Parker Family clinic counts 85,000) who are underinsured or uninsured. Bon Jovi spoke about the importance of the Parker Family Health Center between songs, and discussed his own continuing commitment to its operation. He talked about the clinic without rock star bluster; he was conversational, and, at times, emotional.

That gravity colored his performances. He opened the show with a slow acoustic rendition of the Beatles' "Help," turned "Lonely" (a song from the "Lost Highway" sessions) into a plaintive entreaty, and, most remarkably, stripped the usual triumphalism from "Livin' On a Prayer." Instead of soaring to the high chorus, he altered the melody, kept his voice low, and allowed his six-voice choir to sing the hook. On Thursday night, Gina and Tommy weren't just defiant rock and rollers: They were broke kids lost in the system, maybe a little frightened, too -- people, Bon Jovi implied, who might need the services of the Parker Family Health Clinic. This reimagining stripped some of the exhilaration from the song, but it demonstrated its flexibility. "Livin' on a Prayer" is more than just an arena-rock shoutalong.

The concert came on the heels of a Billboard.com interview in which Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres, in an unguarded moment, admitted he could use an extensive breather. Guitarist Richie Sambora was quick to dispel the idea of a Bon Jovi hiatus, but as the veteran rock group nears the end of the touring cycle for "The Circle," the immediate future of the band is in question. If Torres really does need some time off -- and let's be fair, the guy has been pounding it out at the drumkit nonstop since "The Circle" came out -- don't be surprised if the Bon Jovi frontman throws himself even further into charitable, or even political, efforts.

From mycentraljery.com: Bon Jovi plays benefit show in hometown Sayreville
SAYREVILLE — Neither rain, nor sleet, nor a heck of a lot of snow can keep Jon Bon Jovi from his appointed rounds.

The Sayreville native began his Jon Bon Jovi and Friends benefit concert Thursday night at Starland Ballroom on Jernee Hill Road with a gospel-tinged version of the Beatles classic "Help.''

"Welcome to Sayreville,'' Bon Jovi said. "The hometown of me.''

The show raised funds for the Parker Family Health Center of Red Bank. The concert was his first open-to-the-public show in his hometown since he became a star with his band Bon Jovi in the '80s. Bon Jovi, who grew up in a home at 16 Robin Hood Lane, played a fan club members only show at Starland in February 2009.

"It's great that somebody that big looks out for those less fortunate," said fan Nicole Gonnella, 38 of Spotswood. Gonnella attended the show with her sister Angela. Despite the snow storm, canceling the show wasn't considered, said Dr. Eugene Cheslock, president of the Parker Family Health Center board of trustees.

The Sayreville area received 16 inches of snow by Thursday morning, according to the National Weather Service.

"(Canceling) never came into the equation,'' Cheslock said.

The Parker Family Health Center offers free health care to Monmouth County residents who lack medical insurance or the means to pay for care.

"Our population is young people and they're working but they're the working poor,'' Cheslock said. "With the cost of insurance premiums skyrocketing, they'd rather go naked in favor of food, fuel, a roof over their heads and schooling, and so they have their priorities. Young people think they're invincible and they won't have health problems, but that's not the case. You can't blame them.''

The concert raised an estimated $500,000 for the health center. Tickets were $250.

Visit www.parkerfamilyhealthcenter.org for more information on services provided by the center.

Cheslock is a fan of both Jon Bon Jovi and Bon Jovi's wife Dorothea, who helped arrange Thursday's show.

"The two of them are very generous and connected to their roots,'' Cheslock said. "I find them to be absolutely wonderful benefactors in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. They do good things.''

Bon Jovi's friends on Thursday included Southside Johnny, Bobby Bandiera, Richie Rosenberg, Ray Andersen, Bob Burger and Graham Maby. In other Bon Jovi news, the rocker will star in the upcoming movie "New Year's Eve.'' The ensemble piece also features Robert DeNiro, Halle Berry, Zac Efron, Seth Meyers and Jessica Biel, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

1 comment:

Megan said...

Thanks so much for posting these. I live on the right coast but would have loved to live there. :)