Sunday, March 28, 2010

Circle Arc 3: Mohegan Sun

Section 105 (upper deck, Bobby's side) both nights. Friday row H, Saturday, row B

I almost decided to combine my reviews of these two shows into a site review, because, honestly, they would be quite similar. They start and end with:


But, they turned out to both be fairly long, so I left them separate.

Am I ever glad I got tickets to both of these shows. The standards were all there -- Follow, Bad Name, Bad Medicine, Beautiful, Superman, Work, Who Says, Prayer, Wanted. I am passionate about the set list vs fan debate -- how US audiences get more "vanilla" set lists than the European audiences because we are not as appreciative, don't know the words, etc., etc., etc. We girls (Queenie, Bonnie, Willow, and FM via cell phone) had a great discussion about it over Darlin's in-dash phone system. I have a couple of ideas that I would LOVE to pitch to the band's marketing/tour development department, and am writing them up for the blog to post later this week.

For now, on to Mohegan.

I had the pleasure of attending the Mohegan shows on the Lost Highway. The seats we had this tour were just about the same as we had last tour. We were up in section 105, which is side-stage (Bobby's side), and UP. We were pretty high up (Ticketmaster pre-sale tix) but the view was great. We could see the behind-the-screen goings on at the start of the show, and had AWESOME views of the robots doing their dance.

Most of the pics are mine, though a couple are Wills'.  We had to sneak photos, as we had our SLRs and didn't want to get in trouble for using them.  
Happy Now as the opener on Friday night was fun. It, along with Only Rule, Beautiful, and Superman, are far more powerful live. Superman is my hands-down favorite live performance from Circle. Tico's beat just penetrates through to my heart, changing its beat for those five minutes. I didn't notice what was on the screen during the other shows, but I did see that it was shot after shot of "real" heroes -- everyday people who do heroic things without realizing they're heroic. I saw signs in the crowd declaring "I'm a nurse" or "I'm a fireman", and it was just wonderful.

I want to extend a personal, great big Hath Thanks to Barbara from Italy (EEEtaleee) for bringing her "Never Say Goodbye" sign to lots of shows. Jon noticed it in the pit again. This time, he squatted beside the girl to ask her for her name and where she was from, and said, "How many shows have you brought that to?" He asked her name and where she was from, and said "Barbara from Eeetaleee, I guess we're taking requests now. I'll play this for you, but only if Richie will join me." HOLY SHIT (sorry for the burst of profanity there, but that was pretty much the wave that went through the arena). This was just gorgeous. NSG is my all time favorite Bon Jovi song. It makes me happy and sad all at the same time, bringing back nostalgic memories of High School and all the drama/love/lust that went with it. This was our senior prom song (probably yours too, if you graduated high school in the late 80's) and is just so bittersweet...

This was Jon and Richie (Rich with the double-neck that just breaks my heart every time I see it, it's so pretty) at the top of the circle, sharing a mic. Richie's harmonies were out of this world perfect, and I swear, THIS is what you have to show non-fans to make them understand just what it is about this band that keeps the fans coming back for more. Moments where their skill and talent come together and create something so beautiful it makes you weep (though maybe that's just me. I threatened Willow that she'd have to catch me if they did NSG because I'd probably faint. I didn't though, just had tears in my eyes the whole time.)

I don't normally put the Circle Tour videos up on this site (I reserve that for the BJCT) but this one I have to share. You should share it too.

The crowd reaction should tell them that THIS is what we're waiting for. Older songs that haven't been played for a while and that MOVE us. Damn, I hope they take the hint and bring out more like this. I think I've watched this video at least a dozen times since it was posted.

Squeezebox was another great surprise. Jon and gang surprised the Philly Soul show with a snippet of this song, but we got the full deal (both nights!). Let me tell you, when Jon sings "Squeeze me, c'mon and squeeze me, c'mon and squeeze me like you do, I'm so in love with you", everyone in my section (though they were sitting down) answered with a resounding "when and where, baby". Definitely a crowd pleaser, this one.

Now, there are those who say "I've paid to hear Bon Jovi songs, not cover tunes. Why do they have to do cover tunes when they have such a huge catalog to pick from?"  Of course, I don't know their answer to this question. I do have an opinion, though. Everyone has favorite songs that they want to share with their friends. Even rock stars. Why should The Jovi not pay homage to the bands/songs that they love by playing one or two? Besides, there are only so many accordion songs that David can do :) I for one am not going to complain about it. Though if they're going to take requests (Thanks again, Barbara) and do cover tunes, how about "Drift Away"? Bring that one back.

The rest of the setlist was "standard", and I can understand why when people are going to city after city after city, hearing the same things in the same order would get a little tiresome. We were calling the songs before they started, and were right more often than not. Still, though seeing four shows with much of the same songs, I wouldn't have stayed home from them for anything. I know that when I buy my tickets, I'm getting standard setlists with a few suprises thrown in, if Jon's in a good mood. I can accept that.

Speaking of moods, Jon wasn't to thrilled during Memory. You know that long note he holds for several measures towards the end? How he fades it out by slowly pulling away from the mic? Well Friday, his voice failed him for a moment, and the note broke off abruptly. He let the professionalism slip for half a heartbeat, and we caught a glimpse of Jonny pissed at himself. Wow. It looks like he really does care about the quality of what he puts out there for the fans. We suspected, what with the illness going through the crew (as repoted by Matt B on Twitter), that he was starting to come down with something. We only got two songs in the encore, and attributed it to his maybe not feeling 100%.

It was an amazing show, with a surprise appearance by Jeff Kazee, who looked like he was having a hell of a lot of fun with the guys. We thought David had hurt himself, as Jeff only came out for the songs where D is usually spread eagled between his keys (whimper), but nope, Jeff apparently just wanted to play. He was definitely having a good time.

~ Hath

Happy Now
We Weren't Born to Follow
Bad Name
Born to Be My Baby
Lost Highway
In These Arms
Captain Crash
Radio Saved My Life Tonight (!)
When We Were Beautiful
Superman Tonight
We Got It Going On
Bad Medicine/Roadhouse Blues
It's My Life
Lay Your Hands on Me (Richie vox)
Make a Memory
Never Say Goodbye (!)(!)
Mama's Got a Squeezebox (!)
Something for the Pain
Work for the Working Man
Who Says You Can't Go Home
Wanted Dead or Alive
Living on a Prayer

Video links, rips, and MP3s, along with pictures and reviews are up on the BJCT Blog


Unknown March 28, 2010 at 7:32 PM  

Great review Hath....noticed David and Richie in Montreal last week with kleenex and constantly spitting...ewww...something is definitely going around the guys.

Judith March 29, 2010 at 2:34 PM  

Okay, I have to admit, I´m really jealous you´ve got NSG xxx
This is one of my all time favs as well and I hope they´re gonna play it in Germany too.
*sigh* I just have to live through YT until then....

hwoary March 31, 2010 at 6:45 PM  

I'm Barbara ...from Italy!! OMG I still can't believe it really happened! It was definitely the best moment of my life, but I feel like that wasn't me!! It's just too surreal! Unbelieavable! Impossible!!
Thank you for the great review, it has been definitely an AMAZING show.
I will never forget it.
Never Say Goodbay is the song of me and my dog ShampĆ¹; she passed away last february and since then I've been listening to this song everday. I wanted to hear it live so bad. And Jon and Richie gave me the best present I could ever receive and made me feel close to ShampĆ¹ again. I felt her next to me!! It was truly a special moment, and so meaningful to me. That was the trip of a lifetime.
If you have videos or pics of it, please contact me, I would be very grateful to have them!!
Many hugs!!

The Goddess Hathor March 31, 2010 at 9:11 PM  

Barby! OMG you're my favorite person EVER this tour!! Check out the BJCT (Circle Tour Blog) for that date; there are 5 versions of NSG, at least one of them has JBJ talking to you!!!!

NSG is my absolute favorite Jovi song, and I was beyond thrilled to hear it :)

Can you come to the rest of my shows and get them to play Damned, Temptation, and Unbreakable? lol

Love from the US,

hwoary April 1, 2010 at 6:33 AM  

Ahahahahah Thank you!! I SO WOULD LOVE to come to all your shows!!!! But now I'm back to Italy, and I guess my next stop is London... I miss the US SO MUCH!! Which shows are you going to now? I would love to go to NJ in May *_* ...and I want to hear Damned too!!
Thank you again!! I checked out the blog, and yeah there's a fantastic video!! Would be amazing to have the official footage from the big screen *O* Gotta figure out who I have to beg for it LOL

Hugs from Italy!!!
Barby =)

Anonymous,  April 3, 2010 at 12:17 PM  

Re: Jon's voice. I think it's something that just happens from time to time. In Fargo, he quit singing during the chrous of Bad Name and went to the back of the stage for a drink of water. We thought "Uh oh, that's a bad sign." But his voice sounded spectacular during Hallelujah and plenty of other songs the rest of the night. Can't blame the guy for occasionally getting a frog in his throat.

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