Bon Jovi

Released on January 21, 1984

Recorded at The Powerstation, New York City, New York, USA.

 

Tracklist:

01. Runaway - Jon Bon Jovi, George Karak - 3:50

02. Roulette - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 4:38

03. She Don't Know Me - Mark Avsec - 3:58

04. Shot Through The Heart - Jon Bon Jovi, Jack Ponti - 4:16

05. Love Lies - Jon Bon Jovi, David Bryan - 4:06

06. Breakout - Jon Bon Jovi, David Bryan - 5:20

07. Burning For Love - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 3:51

08. Come Back - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 3:56

09. Get Ready - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 4:07

 

Personnel

Jon Bon Jovi - Lead vocals / Guitar

Richie Sambora - Lead guitar / Backing vocals

Alec John Such - Bass guitar / Backing vocals

Tico Torres - Drums / Percussion

David Rashbaum - Keyboards / Backing vocals

 

Additional personnel

Roy Bittan – Keyboards

Chuck Burgi - Drums

David Grahmme - Backing Vocals

Doug Katsaros - Keyboards

Frankie LaRocka – Drums

Hugh McDonald – Bass

Aldo Nova - Guitar / Keyboards

Tim Pierce – Guitar

Mick Seeley - Backing Vocals

 

Engineers

Larry Alexander

Jeff Hendrickson

John Bengelshmy

 

Producer

Lance Quinn

Tony Bongiovi

 

Chartposition

 

 Chartname                                                       Peak position                                    Weeks in chart

German Top 100

US Billboard 200UK Album Top 100

-

4371

-

86

1


Singles

Runaway

released February 1984

 

US Billboard Hot 100

German Top 100

UK Single Charts

 

She Don't Know Me

released on May 24, 1984

 

US Billboard 100

German Top 100

UK Single Charts

 

Burning For Love

(Japan only)

released on October 17, 1984

 

n.a.

 

 

 

39

-

-

 

 

 

 

48

-

-

 

 

 

 

 

n.a.

 

 

 

n.a.

-

-

 

 

 

 

n.a.

-

-

 

 

 

 

 

n.a.


 

The Videos

 

  • Two videos were recorded for the first album: Runaway and She Don’t Know Me

 

  • Runaway was the first video to be shot and the band didn’t have any idea of the medium whatsoever. As it turned out, it seemed that the director wasn’t well set up either and the video turned into a disaster with Jon later on stating that he thought it was the end of their career before it had even started

 

  • Nowadays the band can laugh off the catastrophe that was their first video. In an interview for VH-1, Tico called the first videos “horrendous”, Jon stated “if you ever want to torture me, make me watch the videos from the first two records” and Richie stated that he looked “goofy in most of them”.

 

  • Their 2nd video, She Don’t Know Me, was shot while the band was on the road supporting their first album. In fact, the band just showed up between two tour stops, filmed their parts and kept going

 

 

Trivia

  • Since it was the first album of the band, there wasn’t too much coverage and little is known about the demoing/production process of it

 

  • Originally, the album was planned to be named “Tough Talk”

 

  • The basic story has been recited over and over again: Jon had written Runaway and no record company showed interest in the demo in any way. So, he went to a newly founded radio station in Long Island, called WAPP, and played his song for the DJ who liked it so much that Jon was invited to take part in a contest of local bands. Runaway ended up being played by all sister-stations of WAPP and went all across the country as well as it won the radio contest and consequently appeared on a record released by the radio station. Suddenly, record companies showed interest in the artist and the chance for the first album was there

 

  • The demo for Runaway actually made it on the record, making it the only song on a band album that didn’t feature any of the band members. However, Hugh McDonald had already played bass on that recording

 

  • Most of the songs, bar the lead single, centered around the love/lust topic and it’s not entirely clear how many songs were solely compiled by the band after the line-up was specified and how much contribution outside musicians had in the recordings process

 

  • Shot Through The Heart was a song Jon had written with Jack Ponti while he was still in a band called The Rest and in an 2013-inteview, Ponti recalled how in his opinion the original hook had been stronger than on the finished version

 

  • She Don’t Know Me was a song that was forced by the record company to be on the album and to be a single, making it the only band song where actually no one from Bon Jovi was involved in the writing process. The band has made it clear on quite a few occasions that they’re not proud of the tune and when, during a Q&A session in the Crush era, the song was requested, Jon answered: “Anything BUT that!”

 

  • Runaway, the tune that started it all, was basically an observation of what Jon saw during his long bus rides from New Jersey to the Powerstation Studios in New York in terms of young girls chasing their dreams. When the band had reworked the song into a piano ballad on the Crush tour, he would often do a longer intro speech and recapitulate how it all came together. This one from Fukuoka 2000 is a good example:

 

Live 

  • All songs from the album were eventually performed live

 

  • Love Lies was a song that got avoided even during most of their opening sets in 1984 and there are only very few selected performances available

 

  • Come Back was completely dropped after 1984 as well and, just like Love Lies, never appeared in any setlist afterwards

 

  • After the release of Slippery When Wet in 1986, most of the songs from the first album (bar Runaway) were put to rest. Burning For Love had been a single in Japan and would actually show up a few more times during the Japanese shows in 1986 and 1987

 

  • Get Ready disappeared after the Rotterdam show in 1989 and for two full decades, Runaway would be the only song to be played from the album

 

  • In 2010, following up their promise to play stuff from the old catalogue, Roulette and Shot Through The Heart were performed a few times during the first tour leg, but disappeared right afterwards. Get Ready was initially dropped after that stint too, but it would re-enter the setlist one more time for the final night of the tour in Lisbon on July 31st, 2011

 

For further information check out the tour section