Bon Jovi says he didn’t want to disappoint Vancouver fans
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Jon Bon Jovi says he rebooked a canceled Vancouver show at a new venue because he didn’t want to disappoint fans in the city he called home for six years.
The New Jersey-born rock star performed Saturday night at Rogers Arena backed by The Kings of Suburbia after complications with a promoter forced the cancellation of their performance in Stanley Park.
His Vancouver show was a homecoming of sorts. Bon Jovi recorded three albums, including the smash hit “Slippery When Wet,” while living in the city between 1986 and 1992.
Bon Jovi opened the concert on an appropriate note with his song, “Who Says You Can’t Go Home,” co-written by former band member Richie Sambora, according to a concert review in the Vancouver Sun. After singing “Lost Highway,” Bon Jovi got a loud ovation when he asked “Did you miss me?”
Bon Jovi’s set included some of his classic songs such as “It’s My Life” and “You Give Love a Bad Name” as well as covers of Canadian Leonard Cohen’s “I’m Your Man” and Sly and the Family Stone’s “Everyday People.”
Bon Jovi had to scramble to rebook his show at the Rogers Arena after complications with a promoter forced the cancellation of a performance scheduled for Saturday night in Stanley Park.
Speaking to reporters before the concert, Bon Jovi said he’s never experienced anything like the mess with promoter Paper Rain Performances, but said he was determined to go ahead with the show.
“Integrity matters. If you give your word to somebody I think you should do the very best you can to follow through on that word,” he said when asked why he felt it was important that he rebook the concert.
“What started out as just an invitation to go and perform in a park that I liked, and a summertime kind of block party feel, unfortunately turned into something rather messy for a lot of folks.”
Although he said he wasn’t involved in the circumstances that led to the Stanley Park show’s cancellation, he apologized to fans for the “turmoil” the situation caused.
The public spat between Bon Jovi’s management and Paper Rain began when the promoter announced earlier this week that the show had been axed due to low ticket sales.
Bon Jovi’s team responded that Paper Rain hadn’t paid vendors or acquired staging equipment, and the City of Vancouver said the promoter did not have the required permits.
Paper Rain announced it was filing for bankruptcy a few days later. It could not immediately be reached for comment on Saturday.
Bon Jovi called the snafu “a little embarrassing,” but thanked those who came together to make sure the show went on, including Tourism Vancouver and Rogers Arena.
“It took our efforts to make this happen. And there was no way I wasn’t going to make it happen,” he said.
Saturday’s show came a day after Bon Jovi released an album called “Burning Bridges,” the first since guitarist Sambora left the group.