New Jersey

Released on September 19, 1988

Little Mountain Sound Studios, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

 

Tracklist:

01. Lay Your Hands On Me - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambira - 5:58

02. Bad Medicine - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora, Desmond Child - 5:16

03. Born To Be My Baby - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora, Desmond Child - 4:40

04. Living In Sin - Jon Bon Jovi - 4:39

05. Blood On Blood - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora, Desmond Child - 6:16

06. Homebound Train - Jon Bon Jovi, RIchie Sambora - 5:10

07. Wild Is The Wind - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora, Diane Warren - 5:08

08. Ride Cowboy Ride - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 1:25

09. Stick To Your Guns - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora, Holly Knight - 4:45

10. I'll Be There For You - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 5:46

11. 99 In The Shade - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 4:29

12. Love For Sale - Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora - 3:58

Personnel

Jon Bon Jovi - Lead vocals / Guitar / Harmonica

Richie Sambora - Lead guitar / Backing vocals

Alec John Such - Bass guitar / Backing vocals

Tico Torres - Drums / Percussion

David Rashbaum - Keyboards / Backing vocals / Horns

 

Additional personnel

Peter Berring - Backing vocals
Joanie Bye - Backing vocals
Bruce Fairbairn - Percussion / Horn
Scott Fairbairn - Cello
Lovena Fox - Backing vocals
Linda Hunt - Backing vocals
Cecille Larochelle - Backing vocals
Sue Leonard - Backing vocals
Audrey Nordwell - Cello
Joani Taylor - Backing vocals

 

Engineers

John Allen
Chris Cavallaro
Chris Taylor
Jim Williams

 

Producer

Bruce Fairbairn

 

Chartpositions

 

 Chartname                                                       Peak position                                    Weeks in chart

US Billboard 200

German Top 100

U.K Top 100

1

4

1

77

35

47


 

Singles

Bad Medicine

released in September 03, 1988

 

US Billboard Hot 100

German Top 100

U.K. Singles Top 100

 

Born To Be My Baby

released in November 24, 1988

 

US Billboard 100

German Top 100

U.K. Singles Top 100

 

I'll Be There For You

released on April 04, 1989

 

US Billboard 100

German Top 100

U.K. Singles Top 100

 

Lay Your Hands On Me

released on August 01, 1989

 

US Billboard 100

German Top 100

U.K. Singles Top 100

 

 

Living In Sin

released on November 11, 1989

 

US Billboard 100

German Top 100

U.K. Singles Top 100

 

 

 

 

1

54

17

 

 

 

 

3

54

22

 

 

 

 

1

67

18

 

 

 

 

7

-

18

 

 

 

 

 

9

-

35

 

 

 

unknown

7

8

 

 

 

 

 unknown

9

7

 

 

 

 

unknown

10

7

 

 

 

 

unknown

-

6

 

 

 

 

 

 unknown

-

6


Blood On Blood was meant to be released as a 6th single and a video for it has already been filmed. But the plans changed.

 

The Videos

 

  • Due to the success of Slippery When Wet’s videos, the band continued to work with director Wayne Isham.

 

  • For the video of Bad Medicine, the band bought around 100 Super-8 cameras and gave them to fans attending the video shoot. That footage was used for the final video and two different cuts of it are available.

 

  • The video for Born To Be My Baby was shot in a sound studio in London while the band was on their European tour in late 1988. The audio mix is different with the band trying out the song and then hitting the full chorus on the second attempt. It was done on purpose, but Jon later-on explained that the executives from the record company didn’t understand the idea behind it and thought the wrong audio mix had been used.

 

  • I’ll Be There For You was filmed at the scene of the Bad Medicine video and then had some black and white live shots. Jon stated during an interview on the New Jersey tour: “It looked like the disaster of disasters.”

 

  • For Living In Sin, the band put a huge effort into developing a storyline around a young couple who had to fight for their love against their parents and ultimately run away from home. However, since the USA was generally extremely conservative on topics like pre-marital sex, the video was censored immensely and never shown on MTV in its original form.

 

  • The video for Lay Your Hands On was shot during two concerts on May 8th and 9th at the Memorial Coliseum in Portland.

 

  • Just one night later, the footage for Blood On Blood was recorded during the bands concert at Tacoma Dome on May 10th. A video with audio from the live performance was produced, but the song didn’t get released as a single in the end.

 

  • Much like with Slippery When Wet, a VHS/Laserdisc release of New Jersey was issued at the time, containing all the video clips from that era.

Trivia

  • The album was planned to be a double album, however, the idea was rejected by the record company

 

  • The working title was Sons of Beaches

 

  • Each of the albums five single reached the top-10, this is the most amount of top-10 hits to date for any hardrock album

 

  • New Jersey was the first American album being ever released in the USSR.

 

  • With this album the band wanted to proof that the success of Slippery wasn't a fluke. So they made themselfes high pressure which led to the first batch of songs written for New Jersey not being good enough. After they took a little break from songwriting the inspiration hit and they wrote songs like Born To Be My Baby, Bad Medicine and Lay Your Hands Me.

 

  • In 2014, a Deluxe Edition of the album was re-issued with a second CD that contained most of the demos from that era: Judgement Day, Full Moon High, Growing Up The Hard Way, Let’s Make It Baby, Love Hurts, Backdoor To Heaven, Now And Forever, House Of Fire (later-on released by Alice Cooper), Diamond Ring, Does Anybody Really Fall In Love Anymore (later-on released by Kane Roberts).

 

  • Other known tracks from that era are: In America, Fighter For Love and Rosie. The latter was demoed by the band, but ended up on Richie’s solo album Stranger In This Town in 1991.

 

  • Since the “Pizza Parlour Jury” had proved to be successful for the previous album, the band again had fans vote for which songs should make the album, but this time around not in New Jersey. They had fans, members of a tent camp and Fairbairn’s babysitter state their opinions in Vancouver and hence based the track list on that feeback.

 

  • When starting to write a song, Jon and Richie usually start with a title. Lay Your Hands On Me is an exception: Richie had this guitar riff in mind so they started to write the lyrics around this riff.

 

  • Nowadays the band states that they don’t write songs with the mindset of “this is going to work in an arena” but admit to have been doing so in the past. Lay Your Hands On Me, as stated by the band, was done in order to have a giant intro and get the crowd going. It was also one of the last songs to be added and written during the recording process in Vancouver.

 

  • Richie got the idea for Bad Medicine while the band was doing a commercial video shoot on the top of a Japanese building. He told the band about his idea and they worked out the basic vocal harmonies right there. Later on Desmond Child suggested to add the line “that’s what you get for falling in love”, from a song they had previously written together, to the pre-chorus.

 

  • Even though Born To Be My Baby reached number 3 in the US charts, Bruce Fairbairn wasn’t happy with the way the song turned out. In his opinion, the song would’ve benefitted a lot from a slower, more laid-back approach in the vein of Springsteen’s Born To Run. The fact that an acoustic B-side version, recorded by Jon and Richie, has been a fan favourite ever since its release, indicates that Fairbairn might have had a point there.

 

  • Blood On Blood centered around the topic of strong friendship and Jon worked his friends from his youth into the song, later on also confirming that the names (unlike in Livin’ On A Prayer) were the real names. Bobby was in fact Dorothea’s boyfriend before he joined the Navy and left her behind in New Jersey. Danny’s occupation was defined as a “medicine man” in the song, however, in most of the post-2000 performances Jon has changed this line to “Danny is doing the best that he can”. In a long introduction speech in 2000, Jon stated that there had been a third character named Steve who “didn’t quite make the story”.

 

Live

  • The whole album was played live during the New Jersey Tour

 

  • Lay Your Hands On Me had been the opening song pretty much throughout the New Jersey tour and had Jon’s talking from the album coming over the PA while Tico played the intro. It returned to this spot for most of the 1996, this time around being preceded by a local marching band who came on stage, pretending to play the song, while in fact it had been pre-recorded and was exactly the same each night. In the mid-90’s, the tune was often extended by long “intro-battles” between Tico and Dave and an extended solo from Richie in the middle. In 2011, a jam session at the end of the song was added to it.

 

  • Bad Medicine used to be the final song on the New Jersey tour and in 1988 it had Jon breaking down near the end, with all the band members checking after him and encouraging the audience to get louder before picking up the chorus again. In 1989, Shout was added to the song as a medley and stayed there for pretty much two decades. On rare occasions, other songs like Gloria were mixed in as well and on the 2010/11 tour, a whole variety of tunes would be used in this spot like Hot Legs, Old Time Rock And Roll, Roadhouse Blues, Pretty Woman or Bad Case of Loving You.

 

  • Blood On Blood was often introduced by long speeches from Jon on the New Jersey tour and as the tour progressed, the performances got extended more and more which eventually led to them running twice as long as the original album cut.

 

  • Love For Sale, while being an acoustic cut on the album, was played once in a full-band electric version during the band’s Christmas Show in Red Bank 1991.

 

  • Stick To Your Guns is the rarest song to be played from that album. During the New Jersey tour there is only one documented performance from Brussels 1988 where Jon messed up the lyrics. The song would return once in Amsterdam 2008 due to fans having the lyrics printed out and holding them up to Jon so they gave it a try and played it before Wanted Dead Or Alive. On his solo tour in 2014 Richie played the song a couple of times.

 

  • 99 In The Shade was done a couple of times but never returned after the end of the New Jersey tour. It was rehearsed during soundcheck in Australia in 2008 but wasn't performed during the show.

 

  • Homebound Train was put to rest after the tour as well and all of a sudden appeared twice during the One Wild Night tour in 2001. After it wasn't played again for 9 years it was back again on The Circle tour in 2010 with Richie Sambora on lead vocals.

 

  • Although Living In Sin being a top-10 single it afterwards only appeared a handful of times during the Keep The Faith tour and wasn't played at all until 2000. Since then it's a "regular rarity" which appears from time to time.

 

  • Even during the New Jersey tour Wild Is The Wind has rarely been played. After it was rehearsed during soundcheck in Wembley 1995 it took until Yokohama 1996 that it appeared back on the setlist. Since then it was played a couple of times each tour.

 

  • Although Blood On Blood has never been a single it was a staple in the setlists back then and is still played regularly. It's been even used as a show opener during the 2010/11 tours.

 

  • Born To Be My Baby was a successful single reaching No. 3 in the charts but was put to rest after the Keep The Faith tour (appearing only a couple of times in 1995) until they brought this song back during show #7 of the Crush tour in 2000. It's been a staple again ever since.

 

  • When the band started to let Richie sing a song on a regular basis on the Bounce tour in 2003, I'll Be There For You was the song of choice. With the start of the Lost Highway tour in 2007 he started to sing lead vocals on other Bon Jovi songs as well but it is still this song he sang the most during Bon Jovi concerts.