In my 30 minute exposure to mainstream television I get each day at the gym, I often watch MTV or VH1. Lately both have had this new Bon Jovi song, “Have a Nice Day” in pretty heavy rotation. It’s an all right song. Not ground breaking, not a deeply complex dish of sounds. It’s just pop, which is really what these boys have been doing for years.
While many would say that they’ve really come back around and they’ve hit a good chord again, I don’t really think that’s true. Pop culture has embraced the eighties again for some damnable reason and that’s why this works. I always hated the big hair, fashion, and majority of music and film that came out then. But here are Bon Jovi. They’ve weathered passage through the desert in the 1990’s and have cranked out a power ballad wall of sound in 2005 that people seem to be going for. It’s just bizarre that it’s the same thing they’ve always been doing. I mean, there they are up on stage. The hair isn’t as big, but the clothes are near the same. There’s Richie Sambora with his double necked guitar at the ready for either a solo or a nice 12 string, “acoustical” bit. There’s the keyboardist with a funky ass mop. The drummer looks decidely modern until he starts doing all the stick funk twirling.
It’d be nice to say that these Jersey boys are still chugging along and staying true, but I think that they, along with other dead set groups of decades past, will be coming out again and again with more power ballads than you can shake a leg wrap at. After the nice departure in to grunge and other experimental mayhem in music, it seems that we’ve gone back to the wall-of-sound and diva-pop choices we had in 1985. Let’s see, we’ve replaced Bon Jovi &amps; Mariah Carey with oh, Bon Jovi & Mariah Carey. How short a journey we’ve traveled. This leads me to believe that in the wake of piracy and the lack of a physical media for music, this is what the industry has responded with. Hmmm, I think I’ll just keep downloading my Doors, Beatles, Zeppelin, and Tupac, depsite the fact that he has put out more albums after he died than when he was living.