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Bon Jovi – Globe Arena, Stockholm, Sweden, 1993-04-17


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This was the first concert I ever went to. I was 15 years old and had gotten Keep The Faith for Christmas 1992. I remember listening to it on my Walkman (yes, that’s right, this was way before MP3 players) in my room at night, and being completely blown away, especially by the 9 minute epic Dry County. So when I found out they were coming to Stockholm, I convinced my cousin to go to the show with me. We had seats on the first level at the side of the stage. These were decent seats, but we spotted a pair of empty ones closer to the stage and with less of a side view that we moved to instead. Surprisingly no one showed up to claim them, so we ended up with great seats.

The opening act was Bon Jovi producer Bob Rock’s short lived band Rockhead. I remember thinking something like “huh, is this what a concert is like?”, not being particularly impressed. But all that would change once the house lights were turned off, and I could see Richie Sambora’s silhouette behind the stage. The first song was I Believe, and I can still remember the thrill when Jon Bon Jovi came running on to the stage just in time for the first verse. I had never before experienced a feeling like this. I sang along to every song I knew for the entire concert. In hindsight I was probably annoying the hell out of the woman in the fringed black suede jacket next to me!

This was the last tour for original Bon Jovi bass player Alec John Such, and I actually remember him messing up the intro to Keep The Faith. I wasn’t surprised when the band let him go before recording These Days. One of my favorite parts of the show that I remember to this day was Dry County, especially Jon Bon Jovi’s frantic speech in the middle of the song. Sadly this is the only time I’ve seen them play Dry County.

Born To Be My Baby was another favorite of mine from the show, and I think it may have been one of the first times I heard it. At the time the only Bon Jovi albums I owned were Keep The Faith, Slippery When Wet, and Jon Bon Jovi’s solo album Blaze of Glory: Young Guns II.

For the encore Richie Sambora entered the stage wearing a long leather coat and a cowboy hat. He sat on a bar stool and played the awesome Midnight Rider before the rest of the band joined him for Wanted Dead or Alive. The last song of the night was Livin’ On A Prayer. They had pyrotechnics going off at the start of the chorus. I remember these big red revolving cherry lights at both sides of the stage before the pyro went off, warning the band not to stand too close.

Prior to the show we had bought cigarette lighters that we waved around for the ballads. I fondly remember the time of the cigarette lighters every time I go to concerts these days. I can’t really remember when that phenomenon stopped. Now everyone turns on their cellphone lights instead for the slow numbers. But there’s not quite the same excitement in that, and you don’t run the risk of getting second degree burns on your fingers when it’s time to put away the lighter after keeping it lit for four minutes – man, that would hurt like hell!

I still have the concert t-shirt I bought in town before the show. It’s all tattered and worn, but you can still make out the Keep The Faith cover on the front. Some time in the late nineties I actually got hold of a VHS bootleg recording of this concert. The quality isn’t exactly great, but it is still a great keepsake. Last time I watched it was for the 10 year anniversary in 2003, so I guess I’ll bring it out again in four years time. I should get it transferred to DVD one of these days before the tape completely dies on me.

Anyway, this was the concert that started it all. Since then I’ve seen Bon Jovi five more times; once in the front row where I actually touched Jon Bon Jovi’s hand, but nothing can compare to that first magical experience.


01. I Believe
02. Wild in the Streets
03. You Give Love a Bad Name
04. Born to Be My Baby
05. Bring it On Home to Me (a capella)
06. Bed of Roses
07. Keep The Faith
08. Blood Money
09. Blaze of Glory
10. Dry County
11. Lay Your Hands on Me
12. I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead
13. Blood on Blood
14. Bad Medicine / Shout
15. Drift Away
16. In These Arms

17. Midnight Rider / Wanted Dead or Alive
18. Livin’ on a Prayer


2 Responses to “Bon Jovi – Globe Arena, Stockholm, Sweden, 1993-04-17”

  1. [...] I got Keep The Faith for Christmas 1992, and saw them in concert on April 17th 1993 in Stockholm (check out my review). This was my first concert and I was completely blown away by the whole experience. From this [...]

  2. Bon Jovi definitely rocks, the best rock and roll band in the planet*-’

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