Bon Jovi’s David Bryan & Tico Torres Talk ‘This House is Not For Sale’

Bon Jovi’s David Bryan & Tico Torres Talk ‘This House is Not For Sale’

Bon Jovi photo credit: Norman Jean Roy

 

Long withstanding members of Bon Jovi, David Bryan and Tico Torres, know who their fans are. They’re dedicated lovers of all things rock and roll, and that’s just who the band kept in mind as they recorded This House is Not For Sale and embarked on its complementing tour, which hits the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul tonight.

“This one is really concentrating on the music,” said David Bryan, keyboardist, songwriter and founding member of Bon Jovi. “We’re proud of it and we’re going to keep bringing it around the world until they nail the coffin shut.”

If you’ve ever seen Bon Jovi live in concert, you know what a spectacle it is. Certainly hearing the band play the songs we all know and love makes it fun, but it’s the interaction from the crowd that really makes it special, according to drummer Tico Torres. “We want our audience as part of our band and we want them to sing and revel as much as we do,” he said.

“We want our audience as part of our band and we want them to sing and revel as much as we do.”

Fans of all ages connect with with music of Bon Jovi, and both Torres and Bryan attribute that to the overall success of the band:

“Music is always ageless and timeless,” Torres said. “I remember when the Beatles came out and I think their music still is strong, if not stronger than it was then. So, I guess you grow up with what you grow up with and it’s kind of nice to be part of that with young people.”

“We started out a long time ago and we’ve managed to just keep writing current songs and have number one current records,” Bryan said. “We keep bringing along those fans and then those fans are growing up and having kids, and then those kids, so for us, it is multi-generational and that’s a great compliment that you can still have a little kid singing a new song and still singing, “Livin’ On A Prayer.” It’s a nice compliment to the power of a band and the power of a good song.”

“Music is always ageless and timeless,” Torres said. “I remember when the Beatles came out and I think their music still is strong, if not stronger than it was then. So, I guess you grow up with what you grow up with and it’s kind of nice to be part of that with young people.”

Many young bands who have been inspired by Bon Jovi had their chance to audition to open for them on tour. Twin Cities’ own Step Rockets have been declared the winners of the Bon Jovi Opening Act contest for tonight’s show in St. Paul.

“We had done it before and we’re doing it again,” Bryan said. “It really helps out that young person and that young band that’s trying to make it. We remember that. It’s a different world than when we started out, but I think it’s good.”

It’s been three years since Bon Jovi last went on tour, and though the band has been through many changes, including the separation from long-time guitarist Richie Sambora – who has not played with Bon Jovi since 2013 – David Bryan feels this tour perfectly demonstrates not only the changes they’ve been through but the staying power of their music.

“Those changes are reflected in the records and the songs, and then we get out there, our job is to be performers and give everybody a great night; forget about your problems,” he said. “Everybody in the world has problems and the nice thing about entertainment is you get to forget about those problems and have a good time for a couple of hours.”

As a music fanatic myself, I always wonder about the personal connection musicians have with their own music; if they’ve used their creative talent as a therapy of sorts to get them through the difficult times in their own lives. “I guess for me the therapy is walking on stage, playing all of our songs, and walking out,” David Bryan said.

For Torres, he looks at the music of Bon Jovi in a different way: “When you [the songwriter], put it out in public, it becomes your song. The listener, and your interpretation, and what it makes you feel like. I think is a very personal thing. As far as the Bon Jovi music, I’ve never felt that way about listening to a song in that manner; I think because I’m too inside of it in a different way.”

When talking about how the bands creative process has changed over the years, David Bryan said the making of This House is Not For Sale came about with an “old school” recording approach.

“This record was just like: “Let’s get back to the roots of sitting in a room, all of us together, looking each other in the face, and coming up with parts and coming up with ideas,” he said. “That whole different energy is apparent on that record. It’s always morphing; it’s always evolving.”

While many of today’s bands rely more heavily on touring than making records, the members of Bon Jovi collectively enjoy the album making process and hope the trend makes a comeback in a big way.

“We still like making albums,” Torres said. “We’re still under the premise that an album tells a story and there’s a lot to be said for that. We still like doing it where you start from the beginning and you end an album. And those days, an album meant something. I think that’s something we still like to keep doing and, hopefully, that will come back in a fast-paced world, because there’s a lot of great musicians out there that have a lot more to say than one song.”

David Bryan and Tico Torres have a love for music as great as their fans, and are looking forward to embracing that undeniable connection tonight at the Xcel.

“Music itself keeps you excited,” Torres closed. “Any artist, whether it’s a painter, writer, a musician, you don’t really retire. You play until you expire. It’s the creative – anything in life that’s creative, you never get old and you never stop doing. I think that works for everybody in the world, in this little world that we live in. So, I mean, it’s a great denominator between languages and countries and, for the most part, it’s a positive message for everybody. I mean, think about driving your car you listen to music. You’re home, you listen to music. It’s an important part of our life. So, it’s kind of not hard – it’s a given. It’s fun that we’re blessed that we can do this.”

 

** This interview was conducted by a group of reporters from various media outlets across the United States via teleconference, including Candice Wheeler from 92 KQRS. **

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