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Bon Jovi > My show reviews > NOVEMBER 14 & 15, 2007 - Montreal, Quebec, Canada

My show reviews

NOVEMBER 14 & 15, 2007 - Montreal, Quebec, Canada

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I fell in love for the 10th and 11th time with the same band
November 14 and 15, 2007

Is it possible to fall in love with the same band, and more particularly with the same man, several times in our lifetime? If it's possible, then it's exactly what happened on November 14 and 15, 2007 with Bon Jovi. Follow me on my journey at the end of my heart...

Day 1

Venue: Bell Centre
Ticket: Floor, Row K, Seat 9
Pictures: Available
Videos: Available

Bon Jovi was back in Montreal for 2 consecutive shows after only 1 year and a half of absence. We cannot say that the band has neglected us these last years. I don't complain at all, because it's better to enjoy it fully while it lasts. Even if I have seen them a few times in the last years, I was feeling like the other times on this beautiful morning on November 14, 2007. Throughout the years some people have asked me how I feel just before a Bon Jovi show. I found the perfect analogy a while ago; it's like a child waiting for Santa Claus at 9h pm on December 24... There is nothing like this feeling: sweaty hands, difficulties to concentrate, not being able to think about anything else, being very emotional, etc. I worked in the morning, but I took off work in the afternoon, so I could get ready properly to experience my tenth Bon Jovi show in 14 years. I had prepared a list 2 weeks prior of the things to do before leaving for the Bell Centre and a list of things not to forget: fan club confirmation emails, old fan club card (in case I meet the band to make them sign on the card), new fan club card (it's a carton laminate that I could wear around my neck like a VIP or backstage pass), toothbrush and toothpaste (oh yes, with braces, we have to be ready for everything!), photo ID card, ear plugs to endure the first act, camera with empty memory cards and 10 fully recharged batteries (long live the excess, my camera only takes 2 at a time!), my banners in case Jon would like to dance with me during Bed Of Roses, cash, cellular phone and the credit card used to purchase the fan club tickets.

I must also add that we were living a new experience as official fan club members. Beforehand, when Jon's mother, better known as Mrs B, took care of the fan club, we were going to the Bell Centre to get our tickets during the normal ticket sale. We could choose our seats which were generally in the second, fourth, sixth, eighth and tenth row on the floor. If we were with friends, we could arrange so we would be together as well if the available seats allowed it. There was no stress, because there were 200 tickets put aside for the fan club, we were generally no more than 50 in line and we were allowed one ticket only per member. Mrs B decided to retire a little more than one year ago and there were chances (or misfortunes!) that the fan club would not survive, because she had found nobody she trusted to take care of it. Finally, it's Jon's youngest brother, Matt Bongiovi, who takes care of it. Now, the tickets are sold online (people were complaining about having to go to the venues where we wanted to go see the band to go get our tickets and then, to go back for the show, etc.) to our great dismay. Nobody is longer assured to get a ticket for their local show and moreover, there is a 2-ticket limit per member. This means that each fan club member can bring a guest, member or not. In my opinion, it's unfair, because we still pay 50$US to be part of the fan club, why would non-members get the right to come also? In short, the online sale went very badly for both nights, because the site was so slow for the sale of the first show and for the second show, the first tickets were sold out in 10 minutes. If I had known, the following days on the site, several tickets were added and the site was no longer hanging... Finally, for the November 14 show, it's my friend Sandra from the fan club who succeeded in buying a pair of tickets at midnight 30 the night of the sale after the site had barely restarted working! We were on the phone together since 10h pm and we were both trying to get a pair of tickets on our side. The worst in the whole story is that we were to discover only the night of the show where our seats were going to be, because the fan club was guaranteeing us a ticket in the 15 first rows on the floor, but no other details were known...

I had coordinated to go to the Bell Centre with Maryse, another fan club member who I had met with in 2005 in the ticket sale line. She works very near to the Jacques-Cartier Bridge and she offered me to come and park my car at her workplace to save on parking fees! I then arrived at her workplace around 4h50 pm, I called her and we left for the Bell Centre. There was quite a lot of traffic, but we got to the Bell Centre a little after 5h30 pm. The fan club tickets were starting to be distributed at 5h30 pm, so we had planned to meet with Sandra for 5h30 pm. She called us, we were one block away from the Bell Centre. We parked in an underground parking lot in front of the Bell Centre for 15$.

We went to the ticket office and we noticed that there was already a big line of fan club members and it was not moving along. Several people were wearing their laminate around their neck to identify themselves as fan club members, it was fun to see that people had responded to the fan club call. We didn't need our laminates to get our tickets, but we were welcomed to wear them however.

We saw Sandra a little further down in the line, so we went to join her. The fan club tickets were assigned randomly even before we arrived, so we didn't need to worry about stealing people's place, our fate was already decided. We waited a big 15 minutes before we saw fan club representatives arrive at the table which was assigned to us. I was very surprised to see Matt Bongiovi himself appear with a box containing the tour programs autographed by the band. There were 4 different ticket packages offered by the fan club:

I was all excited to see Matt there, in front of us! Despite what my friends think, I think that Matt and Jon have similar traits and I find Matt being a quite handsome man nonetheless... :) Let's say that it's the "next best thing"... We were a few who wanted to have our picture taken with Matt, but we were a little shy, so we settled for taking a mental picture of him! Anyway, he left a few minutes after with 2 people... probably the only 2 people who had purchased package "C". He simply gave indications to both fan club representatives (Craig and a girl) who were there to help him. The girl at the table didn't seem to know what to do, it stressed us out a little bit...

It took us a good half an hour to get our tickets. It allowed us to get acquainted with Pauline, a fan club member who comes to chat on the fan club message board from time to time and who lives in Gatineau. She is very nice. We learned that she had already gone to other cities to see Bon Jovi and she told us that the Montreal crowd is by far the best that she has seen! There is nothing like a Bon Jovi show in Montreal according to her! Also, this delay allowed me to learn more about a fan club trip that Maryse and Sandra went to in New Jersey at the beginning of the 2000's. They really enjoyed themselves according to what they told me; it seems like Mrs B (Jon's mother) is really an extraordinary woman and quite party-oriented for her age by the way she wore a shirt inside out one night. Matt was there as well from what I heard... My god I missed incredible chances in life when I think back on it.

There was also a girl from the fan club who was in line near us who had her laminate around her neck held by a lanyard which was identical to the one that Jon had picked up from a girl in the left pit at Parc Jean-Drapeau. I wondered if he had taken it from her and he had given it back to her! Probably not, because it seems to me that Jon took it off when he changed his clothes at Parc Jean-Drapeau and he didn't throw it back in the crowd...

We saw a guy coming down the stairs to go to the ticket office who, according to Sandra, looked like Ashton Kutcher. Indeed there was some resemblance, but after a subtle observation, a few of us were under the impression that it was more a hockey player. He was wearing a suit, maybe we were under that impression because of that. I thought he looked more like Antoine Vermette from the Ottawa Senators...

The fan club member line was composed of several people, but we didn't know most of them... It was probably filled with people who had come from outside Montreal...

We were looking at the fan club members who were receiving their tickets and nobody seemed happy. All of them were doing weird faces while opening their envelope. We were starting to be worried. Just before Sandra stepped forward to go get her pair of tickets, the Bell Centre security was starting to worry, because the fan club line was in the stairs used to go down towards the ticket office. It was 6h15 pm and people were starting to arrive to go in the Bell Centre, so they were all in the same staircase but they were going up, so it was not too safe. They all made us move so the fan club line would be down the stairs towards the ticket office to avoid blocking the Bell Centre entrance.

When Sandra went to get her pair of tickets, the excitement was at its maximum. I saw that there were at least 105 envelopes, because they were numbered, and I saw number 104 and there was at least another envelope underneath! She opened the envelope that Craig gave her and we saw that we would be in row K, seats 9 and 10. Well, ok, there is no row I on the floor, so we were in the tenth row on the left of the center of the stage. Being used to having tickets in the first rows in the center, it's a little bad to have paid so much extra money (the tickets sold to the general public were 135$CAN) to be in the tenth row. Sandra was very disappointed, I even feared that she would tear up the pair of tickets in the rage that got into her. She even removed her fan club laminate from around her neck! Maryse was also in row K, seat 34, so on the right of the center of the stage. Pauline was behind us in the waiting line, so we waited for her to get her ticket before going to eat. She seemed as excited as us, mostly that she had bought a package "A", so with the autographed tour program and the bracelet to go on stage. She was in row F (or G or H depending on the seat where she was and the missing rows at this level??) if I remember correctly, but it seems to me like she told us that she was in the sixth row, so probably F. Since she had a more expensive package than ours, we found it was normal for her to be where she was. Pauline had already eaten, so Maryse, Sandra and I left to go grab a bite. We avoided the St-Hubert restaurant and the Cage aux Sports of the Bell Centre. It was raining pretty much, so we decided to go to the Gare Centrale by the underpasses. There is a food court there, so we decided to go and avoid the crowd. Sandra and I ate a poutine and Maryse ate a super roasted (or grilled??) burger...

After dinner, I went to brush my teeth in the food court public restrooms, it was so pleasant! We then came back to the Bell Centre. Maryse and Sandra succeeded in bringing in their bottles of water obtained during the dinner in their purse and coat. As far as I was concerned, I took a glass of water costing 4.50$ in the Bell Centre. When we arrived, there were still a few fan club members who were waiting to get their tickets. Matt was back beside the table, he was on the cellular phone with someone. Right as we passed by in front of the table, he hung up. I should have followed my instinct and go talk to him a little. I would have liked to meet him so much and thank him for having kept the fan club alive. I will probably have another opportunity in the future, I hope at least! He seems very nice but still a little shy!

Sandra went smoking to get rid of her rage, while Maryse and I went in the Bell Centre. There were quite a lot of people and the first act (Hedley) was starting. We went around a little in the hallway. We saw a huge mosaic of famous people who came to do shows in Montreal in the past: Bono (U2), Madonna, String (The Police) and Jon obviously! Several people were getting their picture taken in front of the picture that was taken when the band came in February 2003. We also went to see what the tickets behind the stage sold by Admission looked like. Finally, people who had bought them had enough for their money, because the stage didn't have any specific background, apart from a giant screen that was as wide as the stage, but it was higher than the people, so these people didn't have their view blocked by the stage or the giant screen.

Opération Enfant-Soleil was distributing gift bows with optic fiber which turned on by flipping a switch. Maryse and I took 1 each from a man who told us that we had to turn it on only when Jon would talk to the crowd. Most people had turned it on right away anyway! When Sandra came back, she had taken 1 each as well, so Maryse and I found ourselves with 2 bows! Hahaha We took a little adventure towards the restrooms which were crowded. We had all gone half an hour beforehand, but we must believe that stress was starting to overwhelm Sandra! Hahaha We also went around the few merchandise stands. Things were quite expensive (e.g. t-shirts costing 45$, football jerseys costing 100$, a denim coat costing 120$). They were selling a little of everything: Bon Jovi underwear, mugs, dog tags, etc. Maryse was tempted by the tour program, but it was 30$ and she had not brought enough money.

When the first act left, we went down to our seats on the floor; we then left Maryse. When we arrived, a guy was talking on the cellular phone at our seats. He had taken his ease and we quickly noticed that he was already quite a lot drunk. Before the show started, he had the time to drink 3 other beers after we arrived! I sat down on seat 9 beside the drunk's real seat while Sandra sat down on seat 10. We were a little too much on the left to my liking, but I was telling myself for that matter that it was better than when I was in the bleachers and Jon seemed smaller than a cartoon on TV! The guy beside me was calling all the people he knew who were at the show and he absolutely wanted to know where each and everyone of them were! To do this, he was taking his glass of beer and he was waving it in the air. The girl in front of me even received some in her hair... There should be a law against drunk people in big gatherings!! This same girl had a magnificent Bon Jovi tattoo on her lower back. The guy beside me talked to me in English at some point to tell me that he found her tattoo beautiful. He even asked her if he could take a picture with his cellular phone, because he thought it was beautiful! The girl was a little relunctant and she told him that she'd better not find this picture everywhere on the internet! It was still her lower back and her upper butt!

I looked around us, and the other fan club members who I know were also in row K, but several were in rows L and M, like a girl named Chantal who I had met with when the tickets for the Parc Jean-Drapeau were put on sale. I was disappointed for these members who were behind us and I couldn't believe that Matt, who is still Jon's brother (Jon's brother!) couldn't do better than that!

Sandra saw again a friend from Toronto who is also a fan club member. She is called Catherine and she seemed very nice to me. She was 2 rows behind us, and after talking to her a little, Sandra told me that she had never been further than the second row in the past at Bon Jovi shows in Toronto! It must have been such a fall for her, mostly that she was in Montreal for the first time! I hope that she was at least able to enjoy herself a little!

At some point, the background music that started playing was the same piece as the one that had preceded the band's entrance at Parc Jean-Drapeau in 2006, so I told Sandra that it was surely the last song before the band would come on stage. We got our cameras ready, I changed my batteries for the high-performance ones I bought with Martin so they would not die during the show! I was right, the lights quickly went off; it was about 8h40 pm or 8h45 pm maximum. This lack of lights quickly triggered craziness in the Bell Centre. The crowd was fully pumped for Bon Jovi, it was crazy, everyone was screaming.

The band members arrived at the same time from the back of the stage. A bigger unifying scream was heard when we could see the members' shadows! When the lights turned on, people went even crazier! Richie and Jon were looking at each other and didn't seem to get over the level of decibel reached! The band members had to wait for a good 20 seconds before doing anything, because if they had started playing, we would have not heard them anyway.

The band played the following songs, the set list was very short for a show in Montreal:


A big surprise for me, the band started by You Give Love A Bad Name! Usually, they warm up the crowd a little before playing the big hits! The crowd went totally crazy in the Bell Centre, I rarely saw that! I started taking a few pictures, but they were not turning out like I would have liked. I started panicking, I was trying all modes on the camera (automatic, action, portrait, with flash, with flash by blocking it to reduce the exposure time of the device, without flash, etc.), but it seemed like I could not obtain a clear picture. Oops. Moreover, all the decent pictures seemed to have a red shade... I then thought that I would be better off filming instead of taking pictures, hoping that I would be closer the next day! I still took almost 200 pictures and I made 17 videos during the show! I filled up my 512-Mbs memory card, I don't know if we were more than half an hour into the show! Fortunately, I had a 1-Gb memory card. When the lights turned on in the Bell Centre at the end of the show, I had space left to store 10 pictures on my 1-Gb card!!! However, about 85% of the pictures that I took are blurry. :( It's not so bad, at least I have the videos to comfort me! The most surprising in this is that my super high-performance batteries lasted the whole show, even if I used the flash for all the pictures! Like I said, I hid the flash with one of my fingers to get an exposure time as short as possible and get the chance of having decent pictures.

When Raise Your Hands began, the crowd reacted vividly. During the choruses, I was looking at the crowd and the people at the other end of the Bell Centre in the blue seats had their hands in the air, it was really fascinating! Speaking of crowd, the effect of the illuminated bows was very nice; a lot of little lights that blinked everywhere! Rumor has it that Opération Enfant-Soleil had given 10 000 of these and we were 17 750, so almost the whole Bell Centre had one! Let's say that some people like me had more than one also!

Right before Runaway, Jon did his usual countdown from 2007 to 1982, time when he had gone to beg a DJ to play his first song on the radio. Jon then said: "I just wanted to be a rock and roll star!" Screams followed! When David started playing the typical part of Runaway, the crowd reacted vividly.

When Story Of My Life began, I had to take a few moments to notice that I was not crazy! I couldn't believe that this song had survived the Have A Nice Day tour. It's Maryse's lucky song, Jon always looks at her during a part of the song, it's now a classic for her!

I noticed a guy who had a ticket behind the stage, he was really into it, he often had his arms in the air and he was jumping from time to time! We could have almost said that he had a feminine fiber in his heart to be so happy to be there! hahaha

Right before starting Lost Highway, the title song of the new album, Jon did a little introduction to talk about the album. Let's say that Lost Highway has songs which have a country flavor and several fans didn't appreciate at all to see the band take this turn! As far as I'm concerned, I adore the new album, let's believe that I'm getting older and I'm starting to love contemporary country! At the beginning of the song, the giant screen at the back of the stage was showing fake church stained glass windows, it really looked like a church, or what Jon calls in show: "Johnny's church".

Right after Lost Highway, the band started a song that I adore on the new album, Whole Lot Of Leavin'! A beautiful song on which it is easy to do a square dance or any other line dance! Hahaha This song is really good live! People were stomping their feet and we could hear the feet movements in the Bell Centre. Moreover, Jon changed the lyrics a little: the first line is usually: "It's pretty cold for late September", but he said: "It's pretty cold for late November"! The crowd reacted vividly to this change!

For this tour, Bon Jovi called in several musicians who complete the band on stage. Two of them were already there during the last tour. The major addition to these extra musicians is a woman called Lorenza Ponce who looks exactly like Jon's wife, Dorothea, mostly when Dorothea was in her late twenties/early thirties. Lorenza plays violin on stage and she is quite a babe, so the guys who go see the Bon Jovi show get a little eyeful! Hahaha She seemed flabbergasted during certain moments by the noise we could do by screaming, sometimes we didn't even hear her play! The following picture shows this woman who is one of the luckiest women in the world while she was enjoying herself with Richie and Jon!

Bon Jovi - Bell Centre, Quebec, Canada (November 14, 2007)

Just before starting I Love This Town, Jon told us: "Montreal, Montreal, Montreal, Montreal! It's always good to be here! We are starting our Canadian tour tonight here (rapture) and we're going all across Canada (rapture). At the end, they'll think we're French!" Hahaha And after he pronounced the band's name like people from Quebec sometimes pronounce it: "Bon Jevi". He seemed to find it funny that people called them like that, it seemed like he meant: "Hey people, it's Italian! Pronounce it like an Italian!" Fortunately, he only settled for ending with "I love this town!" and he started the song that has the same name... Completely brilliant!

The people in front of us all left at some point to go on stage, it was fun, there was only the first row in front of us! When Captain Crash & The Beauty Queen From Mars began, the people were not back yet and Sandra and I started swinging our arms in the air to the beat. Jon came on our side at the beginning of the song and he looked at me, he made me a big smile and he went back to the middle of the stage afterwards! It's the first time he smiled at me like that! I had my fan club laminate around my neck and since there was nobody to hide it, I'm under the impression that he came to look at me because of it! I even had the time to smile back before he went away! It's a first for me, usually, I freeze when he looks at me, but I got better, at least I'm able to smile at him now! Hahaha

We Got It Going On is really good live, I'm happy that they chose to play it regularly! The original version includes Big & Rich and before the solo, Jon says: "And now, a public service announcement from my country cousin. Hey Kenny, talk to the people" and Kenny from Big & Rich says: "Brothers and sisters, we're here to come together as one and love everybody. Can I get a amen now?" and the other band members answer: "Amen". For sure Jon doesn't say his part live, but he says Kenny's (I noticed it just at the second show!! Hahaha). I screamed with all my heart "Amen!" when the time came to answer Jon!

Born To Be My Baby, It's My Life, Bad Medicine, Have A Nice Day and others really made the Bell Centre go crazy, but I think that nothing could compare to the noise of the crowd during Shout (in intermission to Bad Medicine). Like the Journal de Montréal wrote the next day, we could have sworn that the Bell Centre roof was about to blow off like a champagne corkscrew. The effect was really a success, we could have said that everyone was waiting for this moment to let off steam by jumping as highly as possible. At the end of Shout precisely, Jon said: "Ok, so I see that you are getting warmed up now!" hahaha

A word on the stage: it was like being in a local bar; there were 2 bar tables with bottles of alcohol, fake windows, 2 doors on each side of the stage. There was also a jukebox in the middle of the stage. Jon said, I think just before It's My Life: "Ok, let's see if we can get this jukebox working" and he pretended putting a quarter in the jukebox. He then said: "Ah good, it's still working!" The giant screen above the people behind the stage was showing very pale images from time to time, it was sometimes very hard to see what was shown on it.

I found it was easy to dance on the country songs, I enjoyed myself anyway on these, but also on the old classics. I don't remember dancing as much at a Bon Jovi show in the past!

After the collective craziness triggered by Shout and the rest of Bad Medicine, Jon introduced Richie and invited him to the main microphone to sing a song from his first solo album: Stranger In This Town. I told Sandra: "Well, I'm not sure I remember the lyrics of that!" Most of the lyrics were buried in my head and they resurfaced quite quickly when Richie started singing.

I have never thought that Jon would take the opportunity to go in the red seats in the middle of the Bell Centre! When (You Want To) Make A Memory began, confusion that this move triggered was unbelievable! Hahaha Nobody except the people near Jon had realized that Jon was then there. I had a feeling that Jon would stay there to sing Bed Of Roses... (You Want To) Make A Memory is a beautiful song, but live, it doesn't blast enough. The crowd still reacted, but I was hearing myself sing too much to appreciate Jon's voice in all that and it seemed like everyone was singing off-key... It is not an easy song to sing in the first place, so live, it's even less easy when everyone shouts their head off!

At the first notes of Bed Of Roses, an inside scream of deception came by itself to my lips. I tapped Sandra on the shoulder while holding my banner and I told her: "Look, you know, what I brought!" She answered me: "It's true, you had told yourself that you would try catching Jon's attention!" When she saw one of my banners, she seemed to understand what I meant. My banner said: "Is it my turn to be a B.O.R. girl yet?" A BOR girl is a girl who dances with Jon during the solo of Bed Of Roses... I had told myself that if I were close enough, I would show it to Jon at the beginning of the song... Anyway, I told myself that I was not well positioned at all to catch Jon's attention towards myself even if he had stayed at his microphone in the middle of the stage... I then put my banner back in my pockets and I let the other one hooked in my pants. I didn't take out the other one at all, it was pointless! What greatly comforted me is that Jon didn't dance with a girl while going back to the stage during the solo of Bed Of Roses (he however gave a kiss on the hand of a lucky one in the crowd) and Maryse made a video of it all, since she was on the right side of the floor!

I had told Sandra and Maryse at dinner that I would like to hear Last Man Standing and that I would record it if it were the case. I was still in shock about Bed Of Roses when the first notes of Last Man Standing were heard. Sandra looked at me and she screamed: "Last Man Standing! Last Man Standing!" and I didn't understand anything, I thought that she was telling me: "Have A Nice Day! Have A Nice Day!" and I was wondering why she panicked so much! hahaha (Note for the non-fans: Have A Nice Day is a song that the band always plays since the last tour.) Until my brain processed the information provided by Sandra and I understood that it was Last Man Standing. I got my camera ready so quickly to record, I cannot believe that I didn't miss any lyrics of the song! Hahaha I was so happy to hear that one again!

Then, the first notes/lyrics of Lay Your Hands On Me were heard! I couldn't simply believe it! I don't know how many years it's been since I had heard this song live! Jon came to see the people behind the stage during the song, by moving like a dancer in a bar. Behind the stage, there was some kind of empty windows where Jon could very easily see the people behind the stage. We can see a little of what the back of the stage looked like with the following picture:

Bon Jovi - Bell Centre, Quebec, Canada (November 14, 2007)

Even behind the stage, people seemed to still enjoy themselves. The worst in all that is that some of my pictures are blurry, we cannot see Jon correctly, but the people behind the stage are very clear! Grrrr This is what happens when the camera doesn't know which subject I want to take a picture of! I sincerely believe that it's a factor that has made most of my pictures not very good; having no screen prevented the camera from focusing on Jon!

Who Says You Can't Go Home triggered a beautiful reaction from the crowd, Richie and Lorenza joined Jon at the main microphone to do the "It's all right" of the end of the chorus; they seemed to really enjoy themselves on stage!

Then, the lights went off to make way for a single spotlight on Jon who began Livin' On A Prayer a cappella like he almost always does now. People were stomping their feet to the beat once again; it's crazy how the tiles that the Bell Centre staff puts on the ice make noise when people stomp their feet! Anyway, the drunk guy beside me seemed to take great pleasure in stomping his feet! At least I told myself that the guy seemed like a fan, because he was singing, taking pictures, etc. He even dropped his cellular phone at some point. He was searching everywhere, I was wondering what he was doing, I thought he wanted water from my glass or to rob me! Hahaha I subtly bent over to drink a little and he told me: "I have lost my cellphone." What did he want me to do? The guy was drunk, he was calling everyone before the show, all I could think of is: "Wow, will his cellular phone still work afterwards?!" with the beer pool there was on the floor after the show. It's for that reason that I always put my small purse with the strap inserted in the part where we sit down on the seat, the purse is above the ground level and underneath the seat; it is anchored there securely.

At some point, we smelled cigarette in the area. I turned to my left, it was the drunk guy who was smoking in a quite dangerous way; he was inhaling and then, he was hiding his cigarette by putting his arm along his body. Everything could have caught on fire with the beer on the floor and the cigarette ash!! At some point, I looked at him at the same time he was inhaling and I waved my finger to tell him it was forbidden. He ignored me. Sandra looked at me after she smelled the cigarette too, I gesticulated to tell her that it was the guy beside me. She passed on the message to the people who were on our right up to the aisle to a security guard. It's a woman guard who came in our row to warn him. She asked to see his ticket and she scribbled the barcode of his ticket. She warned him that if he started again, he was out. I thanked Sandra for the gesture. The guy smoked again at some point, but security did nothing.

There was a couple in front of us who were as still as sticks. They couldn't stop touching each other the whole evening, they didn't seem to know the songs... It was clear that they didn't belong in the nineth row of the floor in my opinion! It was too bad to be around people who are not from the fan club in front of us; at least, we are happy to be there and we show it!

At some point, Jon went on the right side of the stage, and I noticed a guy who was wearing a New Jersey Devils jersey in the red seats. Since I know that Sandra's favorite hockey team is the Devils, I pointed at the guy and she was freaking out, because he had the same jersey as her (the same player), except that the guy's jersey was white and she has the red one. She took pictures of the guy with her 12x-zoom camera! hahaha

The drunk guy beside me, as well as at least 2 girls in the row, decided at some point to leave the row by walking on the seats. They put everything on the ground, because the seats were folding easily and they were walking on them exactly where they were folding! Congrats on not wanting to disturb us! Fortunately, they did this little game only once!

Sandra turned around towards me at some point and she told me that she was so hot! It was very hot indeed, we looked as if we had stayed outside in the rain! We had to find a way to burn the energy that the big poutine had given us! Hahaha At another given moment, I don't remember during which song, she screamed: "They want to kill us all, they want to kill us all!" I think that she was happy with the list of songs played! Hahaha

Jon said between 2 songs: "You're too good to me!" meaning that he didn't deserve as much affection from the crowd. Come on Jon, people from Quebec, when they love, it's forever!! And you know very well that we would follow you everywhere! Moreover, how could he not make the girls hysterical with these wild almost provocative hip movements and wicked hip sways during some songs?! He seems to take quite a pleasure from it anyway! The only negative aspect about Jon: I didn't find him very handsome with his hair too short for my liking! And he seemed so tired, even at the beginning of the show. It seems like he has lost some weight lately and he seems less in shape. His short hair seems to have aged him! Moreover, either he had pants problems or a problem in his pants, because he subtly repositioned elements of his masculine anatomy several times!

There were several banners in the crowd in the red seats on my right. Some of them had messages similar to: "The radio's playing and Jon, you make me feel like Summertime", "Thank you for coming to Montreal (...)", etc. When Jon saw the one that made reference to Summertime at the end of the show, he simply shrugged; the band has a song called Summertime on the new album, but Jon didn't seem in the mood to play it. There was also a banner that said: "Stay just a little longer to make a memory". I was frustrated (and Maryse as well) to see this plagiarism! Maryse had her famous "Stay just a little longer" banner that she brings with her since the show in Quebec City in 2001. Jon seems to remember it at each show as well, it is shown on the giant screen at every show I went to in the last years. Speaking of giant screen, there was one right above us, it was very hard to see what was happening on it. I tried to take a picture of it, but I didn't have the right angle to do it! I however had the time to see Maryse's banner on the giant screen during the encores. For a girl who didn't seem to think it was a good idea to show it after all these years, it was a success once again!

Between the main part of the show and the encores, people started singing the famous "olé olé olé". I never start singing this, because I think that it is more fun for the band to hear people shout their head off by screaming and clapping their hands than to hear this singing. Sandra seemed to have the same opinion as me about it!

During Wanted Dead Or Alive, Jon let us sing the first verse again, it was fantastic; Richie seemed impressed once again! After this song, Jon took off his ear plugs, the band members took a collective bow without Jon introducing them even once; I found it strange... They were all leaving, the crowd was ecstatic, Jon started making his faces like he wasn't sure he wanted to leave, the crowd reacted even more! They finally decided to stay for another song, Twist And Shout. It's the first time I was seeing Jon put his ear plugs back on after taking them off! Usually, when he takes them off, he just decided that it is over. The party continued even stronger in the Bell Centre!

I don't remember during which encore, but at some point, David seemed to look on my side, so I started waving my hand at him, but he didn't react. He must have been in the middle of focusing in playing piano! hahaha

The lights turned on in the Bell Centre for good around 11h05 pm. Maryse came to join us instinctively, because she was bringing me back to her workplace so I could go back home. We had forgotten the detail of planning where we would meet at the end of the show! The girl beside Sandra seemed a fan club member as well, but we didn't introduce ourselves. When she left, she said bye! Another proof that the fan club is more than a fan club, it's a community!

I found that they didn't play many songs from the new album, unlike previous tours! I found it quite weird, because during their shows in New Jersey just before the Montreal ones, they were playing a lot more than that!

Like one of the newpapers articles that I read the following day said, it really seemed like the people who were at the Bell Centre had come for a liberating group therapy. Unlike Jerry MacGuire who was singing at the top of his lungs in his car, alone behind the wheel, we all sang together at the top of our lungs in the Bell Centre! hahaha

When we left the Bell Centre, we walked a little while all together. In front of the Bell Centre, there was a white limousine which was waiting for people. We all said that it was probably rich people who had paid for that. I'm more under the impression that it was a couple from Occupation Double who had this limousine, because on the TV show the following Sunday, I saw a limousine which looked an awful lot like it! Lucky them, they received free passes to go in the pits at the beginning of the show! It made me green with envy and red with anger!! I just hope that Jon didn't go to touch them! Anyway, the TV show didn't show such moment and the girl was not hysterical when she left and made an interview, so it's a good sign!

It took us an awful lot of time to leave the underground parking lot, the lady at the entrance was telling everyone to turn right at the exit to avoid the traffic, but when we arrived at the exit, the traffic was on the right and there was no one on the left!! In the car, Maryse and I talked about the band and what they mean to us. She found the answer to a question which was asked to me by several people already and it's exactly what I was looking for to answer to these people. How would you describe the feelings you have for the band, and for Jon more particularly? Like a sister/brother relationship, romantic, etc.? Maryse summarized it very well: it's like your best friend; when we are depressed, tired, discouraged, etc., their music is like a best friend who helps you in these tough times. We can almost relate everything to a Bon Jovi song; it's a part of us. It's what's left to remember good times by.

I got home around 12h20 am, I had a very hard time falling asleep and I woke up often! I was tired, but very satisfied!! And I was ready for round 2 the following day! My voice was hoarse when I left the Bell Centre, but apart from a few broken words from time to time, I was not so bad!

To be continued on the next page...


Copyright © 2007 Marie-Hélène Cyr

Day 2

Venue: Bell Centre
Ticket: Floor, Row G, Seat 14
Pictures: Available
Videos: Available

Morning came very quickly, but I was not as sore as I would have thought... Let's say that my intensive workout sessions made a difference! I went to work (well, try to pretend to work at least!) in the morning. A coworker, when she arrived, heard me type at the computer and she started singing: "It's my life, it's now or never..." hahaha She asked me if I had fun... If I were not having fun at a Bon Jovi show, there would be a problem! Hahaha I convinced a coworker to buy a pair of tickets for the second show when I sent her pictures! And I learned that there was a girl working for NASA who works with me sometimes who is a big fan also! It's when we talk about something that others' passion comes out!

I came back home in the afternoon to get ready for the second show. I was really tired during the afternoon, I was wondering how I could be in shape in the evening... Thanks to a hormone called adrenaline, I quickly regained strength! I brought the same things as the previous day, without forgetting my fan club laminate around my neck and my camera with my recharged batteries and my empty memory cards.

Like the day before, I went to meet with Maryse at her workplace. I was afraid of being late because of an accident on highway 30, but I succeeded in arriving at 4h55 pm! Maryse and I left for the Bell Centre by car once again. Sonia, one of my coworkers who had bought a ticket as well in the Bell Centre upper sections of the bleachers, called me to tell me that she was coming; we were almost at the Bell Centre. Since she was coming alone, I had told her that she was welcomed to come eat with us. Maryse's twin sister was coming as well, she had a single ticket too. We all arrived almost at the same time at the Bell Centre, and we parked in the outdoors parking lot in front of the Bell Centre for a total of 20$. After a few minutes, we had arrived once again near the ticket office, it must have been 5h45 pm at that moment.

The fan club table was now in front of the fake locker room of the Montreal Canadiens and all fan club members were towards the hallway that leads to the underground passageways. We saw Sandra who was quite in front. Since we cannot change anything for our seats, the order which the people arrive in is not very important and we stayed beside her. Anyway, there were several people who cut in front of us when they arrived and saw their friends. Pauline was just behind Sandra. She seemed to have enjoyed her experience on stage very much, she was able to touch Jon and she was joking about the fact that she would never wash her hand again! Hahaha In her opinion, it is really worth paying for this ticket package! I also learned that Matt himself escorts the people who go in the pits now! What a brother, he really takes care of people! Moreover, I had forgotten that Matt is Jon's youngest brother, he would only be 32 years old from the computation of the age difference between the 2!

We waited at least until 6h pm before Matt showed up with our tickets. It's not very nice to keep us waiting like that, but it was worth it this time! For the second show, we had all succeeded in getting a single ticket. I was hoping with all my heart to be closer than yesterday! Sandra and I got our cameras ready to take a picture with Matt if he stayed there! However, he left not long after his colleagues, Craig and the same girl as the previous night, settled themselves. He left alone, what makes me believe that nobody had bought a package "C" at 3000$. I was very disappointed to see him leave like that, because I had already thought about what I would tell him... "Hi Matt, thank you so much for keeping the fan club alive after your mother decided to retire. And do you know that I promoted the band at work today for free? I even convinced some people to buy tickets for tonight's show. Do you think I deserve something special?" I know that it's a little cheesy, but he would have probably liked to hear beautiful words like these. Buttering people up has always been my strength anyway!

After a few minutes, a guy couldn't get his ticket, because he was saying that he was coming to pick up his wife's ticket, but the rule was strict; each member must come pick up the ticket(s) they purchased on the website. In short, it was Sandra's turn to pick up her ticket and it was my turn afterwards (or vice versa??). When I got to the table, I said hi to Craig who was at the table, in English of course. I handed him my driver's license so he could confirm my identity. He looked at my name, and he said: "You're Helena?" I answered: "No, it's Marie-Hélène. It's French..." He told me: "Oh ok, that makes sense." He had started going through the sheets of paper on which our names were written, but he was further than the "C". I then told him: "Well, Marie-Hélène is my first name. My last name is Cyr. C. Y. R." He then answered me a little shy: "Oh right, I'm sorry. Hold on..." He made me sign a sheet beside my name and he handed me an envelope with my name on it. I told him: "I hope that my ticket is better than yesterday!" He then told me: "Let's see what I can do. I will rub your envelope on my lucky belly and we'll see, ok?" hahaha He was really serious, he rubbed my envelope a few seconds on his belly! It seems like he was doing that to all of those who were saying this! Sandra had just opened her envelope (or is it me that went first and received my envelope before her?? I don't remember anymore!) and I opened mine also. When I saw that I was in row G, I was relieved! Yeah, seventh row, what an improvement from the day before! Moreover, I had seat 14, in the aisle between the left and central sections of the floor. The seat is the last one before the aisle in the left section. I then knew that I had a very good seat! Sandra had seat 11 and Maryse was in the same row, but she had seat 29, the last seat of the right section before the aisle on the other side of the floor. We were delighted by our seats and Sandra kept her laminate around her neck this time! Hahaha There was a girl named Nathalie from St-Jean-sur-Richelieu who spoke with Pauline (Pauline had bought a package "A" to go on stage the previous day) to know what was in store for her. She was very happy when she received her bracelet, because the woman representing the fan club told her that she would be in the left pit, on Richie's side. Jon seems to prefer this side, we don't quite know why. Pauline had seat 14 of row J, 2 rows behind me and Nathalie was in row E seat 11. They were very happy as well, even if Pauline were further than the day before. Not very long after, we went to eat, me, Sandra, Maryse, her sister, Nathalie and Sonia. Pauline had already eaten once again. I love the helping spirit that fan club members have among them; we don't hesitate in inviting members who are alone to join us!

Sandra told us when we got out of there that she had asked Craig if Matt were going to come back later. He asked her if she were asking this because she wanted to have her picture taken with him. She responded positively, so he said: "Well, I'm his agent, so you'll have to go through me for that..." Sandra then answered: "No, Matt is his own agent!" hahaha Craig told her afterwards that Matt would be back a little later, like yesterday.

We went to the Gare Centrale again to eat a good and well-greasy poutine to give us energy! Hahaha I had a hard time eating though, because I was nauseous from my tiredness and I was so happy to be closer that I couldn't eat...

After dinner, I went to brush my teeth at the same restroom as the day before, after being teased a little by my friends... We all stopped by there, so we would not have to go in the Bell Centre with everlasting waiting lines. We were also able to look at the tour program autographed by the band members that Nathalie received with her package "A"; it was a little weird seeing this, I don't think I saw things autographed by the band often!

We went back to the Bell Centre, it was a little later than 7h30 pm when we arrived. The Place Bonaventure entrance was closed at the subway, so we had to go through outside to get to the Bell Centre! With the rain, it was not really fun! At least, Sandra could tell us that there was an article on yesterday's show in the Metro newspaper on our way back, so we all took a copy!

We went in using the Bell Centre entrance near the ticket office. I didn't think about it, we should have gotten down the stairs instead of getting in right away, maybe we could have talked to Matt before the show. The previous day, he was still at the table around 7h15 pm... We all tried to sneak our bottle of water from dinner in the Bell Centre. I had mine in my coat pocket and Maryse, Sandra and I successfully got it in without any problems! A 4.50$ saved on something free at home! We just had to be careful not to show it before the concert and during the concert while security guards were near.

Maryse and her sister went to Maryse's sister's seat after buying the tour program with "recent pictures of Jon" like the girl at the stand had told us yesterday. Jon cut his hair a month ago and all the pictures in the program show him with his hair a little longer! In short, the rest of us stayed to hang around while waiting for the first act to end. Sandra faced the restroom line once again which got awfully longer after the first act was over!

When we got to our seats, it was awesome! We were surrounded by fan club members (finally!), we were closer! Pauline was very happy with her seat, me too! In the aisle, finally! This means more room to move at least! Let's say that the 2 people between Sandra and I were not the same size as us and I was relieved to know that I would have more room to move! They seemed very nice, they talked to me right away by saying that there was a girl earlier on who tried to steal my seat with one of her friends. I said: "Well too bad, my ticket is here, I stay here!" In front of me, I immediately recognized a girl who I had met with in the line for the ticket sale for the Parc Jean-Drapeau. She told me: "We know each other I believe?" I responded positively. She and her friend were in the middle of taking out a lot of signs from a bag. Sandra looked at me like she meant: "Well, what are they doing with so many signs??" I already saw them in show, they show each sign to the band once and then, they don't show them anymore. This kind of things doesn't bother me as much, because it's more interesting than anything else to see the band's reaction when they see the signs. I just asked the girl if they were planning to block my view all evening, just to get reassurance. She immediately told me: "Oh, no no, don't worry, we show our signs only once, that's it!" Not to sound too nasty, I answered: "Oh, it doesn't bother me at all if you show them once, I just wanted to confirm what you just told me, thanks so much." She discreetly showed us one of her new signs (because most of them were made a few years ago), because they didn't want everyone to see it. It said something along the lines: "Richie your voice does to me the same thing as when men do something they can with their hands"! hahaha Wow, I would never have dared writing this with the intention of showing this to the band!

A girl in the row in front of me came to talk to me by saying: "You're Marie-Hélène, right?" I was so surprised to see that a girl who I don't know at all (even if her face rang a bell) could recognize me by my first name... Maybe my laminate was on the side where my name was also, I don't quite know. She introduced herself, she was Sheryl (her name on the fan club message board is Peony) from Toronto. She told me: "Nice to meet you. I really enjoy reading about your job on the board!" I couldn't believe it at all! Hahaha I gave details lately on the fan club message board about my public servant work. She had the new laminate around her neck, because we had to renew our fan club membership before November 1 and she had already received her new laminate, lucky girl!

When I sat down, I counted the number of rows from the front up to my seat. I noticed that rows A and B didn't exist at seat 14, so I was actually in the fifth row! It was incredible! Sandra asked me if I wanted to switch seats to be next to her, but I loved my seat too much not to be in the aisle! Nobody was blocking my view, I was in the aisle in front of Richie, so Jon was on my right and higher than me; it was the perfect spot after the first row!

When I put my coat on my seat, the girl behind me asked me if the laminates we all wore around our neck were a sign that allowed us to go on stage during the show. (In fact, she was sure that it was a stage pass!) I simply answered to her that it was an official fan club membership card and to go on stage, we had to wear a bracelet on the wrist!

The girl from NASA, Diane, had told me where she was: section 104, row DD. When I saw the stage, I confirmed what I had told her: she was just simply beside the stage on the left! She must have freaked out when she saw where her seat was! She envied me when she learned that Jon had smiled at me the day before, but she probably had the chance to touch him! I saw her at her seat, she didn't seem disappointed!

There were several security guards who were keeping an eye on the first rows on the floor. The security girl who came to warn the guy beside me yesterday about not being allowed to smoke told one of her colleagues: "Hey I'm freaking out, they are all the same people as yesterday!" Of course, we were several from the fan club! :)

The song that played just before the lights went off yesterday began. I positioned everything on and underneath my seat (purse, coat, bottle of water, tour program) and I got my camera ready; I tied the camera case to my belt for more support. I also put, like yesterday, the Bed Of Roses banner in my pants on my left to prevent it from falling. I also looked like I had a headband tied up to my pants with this banner!

However, the lights didn't go off before the following song! The three additional band musicians arrived on stage, welcomed like they were real stars. They sat down on the right side of the stage and they started playing a very country song, old country! David and Tico arrived on stage using one of the doors on the sides of the stage (I don't remember which one) and they went to position themselves at their instrument. Then, Richie came out of one of the doors on the sides of the stage (I don't remember which one either). The crowd welcomed him as a hero. Then, a few seconds later, a big white spotlight appeared at the door on the left of the stage and Jon's shadow appeared! People went crazy in the Bell Centre! Jon came out with his guitar in his hand; the craziness continued! I was thinking about Diane who was just beside Jon! The band immediately started playing without waiting for the crowd to calm down. I must say that I found the crowd a little less loud tonight compared to last night.

Here is the set list of this show which went by so quickly!:


During the first songs, I put myself a little in the aisle to give room to the girls on my left. The girl right beside me told me not long after: "Wouldn't they let you up front??" I told her that no, because security was very strict towards the people who came closer to the stage; if you don't have a ticket in this row, you don't go there! She seemed disappointed for me! Security guards didn't stop on bothering us also by signaling to us to go back in the rows when we were a little too much in the aisle. At some point, a guard told me to get in my row, but the girl beside me was at my seat at that moment, what did he want me to do?? I know quite well that there were a lot of people who were trying to get closer to the stage by telling the security guards that they were there since the beginning of the show. They couldn't fool the security guards, they knew very well who was where in each row end! hahaha

I started making a video of the chorus of Raise Your Hands to capture the crowd's atmosphere a little. Immediately, I felt a finger tapping on my right shoulder; it was a security guard who told me: "Hey, you have the right to take pictures, but not to make videos!" I surely wasn't subtle with my camera showing a "REC" with a blinking red light on the LCD screen! Oops! Anyway, I succeeded in filming little parts afterwards by hiding the "REC" and by pretending to hide the flash from time to time with my finger. During These Days, I even made a video with my camera close to my chest. Nobody was blocking my view, so even at this height, there is nobody or almost nobody in the video apart from Richie! In short, I took close to 400 pictures during that night! I was almost always taking pictures of someone on stage, but I still had the time to jump and enjoy myself a lot, in addition to shouting my head off by singing! Doing that is really liberating, it allows me to vent as we say! My super high-performance batteries are really extraordinary, because they didn't let me down throughout the whole show. I took 400 pictures with the flash hidden once again to get the shortest exposure time possible. I don't know if the camera were off 10 minutes during the whole show! I had to find a way to raise my arms in the air a little during Raise Your Hands and Lay Your Hands On Me, like everyone in the Bell Centre, even those in the blue seats in the nosebleed sections!!!

Jon asked us after a few songs (if it's not after the first one!): "How many of you were here last night?" The crowd, at least on the floor around me, reacted strongly. He then said: "That's what I thought!"

Just before Runaway, Jon simply said: "Now, we're going to bring 1982 into 2007" and they started playing the song. I don't know if someone from the band read the newspapers critics, but a news reporter from La Presse criticized Jon by saying that he always does the same countdown game from 2007 to1982 to introduce Runaway.

After Runaway, I heard notes which I had not heard often live. They were playing the first notes of The Radio Saved My Life Tonight! It's one of my favorite unknown songs, the lyrics are so beautiful and can apply partially to me when I discovered the band. I was so happy!

Tonight, the band was really trying to bring me to a very happy place in my heart, because after The Radio Saved My Life Tonight, they played Summertime! Summertime!! The summer song by excellence! And moreover, with Jon's help by being in front of me like that, I was finally able to sing it entirely without stumbling on the words! He says a few lyrics so fast that I am never able to say them when I sing with the album! Hahaha It took Jon to be there for me to be able to do it! :)

We witnessed a pathetic act from a tall woman in the second row up front. She was so drunk that she barely had her eyes open! She kept on leaving to get beer, it was terrible! She was dancing in the aisle and was moving from row to row to see her other friends (I hope that they were her friends anyway, because she was very friendly with them!) in the rows in the middle. Security was overwhelmed, just because of her. At some point, she had a glass of beer in her hand which didn't have any cover. The beer was spilling everywhere around her, because she was dancing and raising her arms! At 9.50$ each beer (yes yes, I heard a clerk tell that to a girl before the beginning of the show!), it seems to me that I would be careful not to spill it if I bought myself a beer! She kept on stepping up on her seat as well to be "closer" to the band. She must have been more than 6 feet tall, she was blocking almost everyone's view by doing that! Security was very strict with her, let's say that she wasn't staying long standing up on her seat. Personally, I would have let her do her stupidities, she would have ended up breaking a bone during a song! But however, I think that the guards were extremely patient with her, because if it were only me, she would have been out of there pretty quickly after the beginning of the show! I know that towards the end, during the encores, the guards finally grabbed her by the arms and brought her away through the first row. By seeing how she was putting up a struggle, I was under the impression that she didn't want them to bring her away! Good riddance for her anyway. She must not even remember what happened!

There are fans who still have no control over themselves! Another girl, who was already in the pit on the left of the stage, jumped on stage at some point. She got grabbed by 2 security guards, she had just passed by Richie and was directly running towards Jon who was on the right on stage. You know, the girl was already in the pit, why didn't she wait for Jon to come see her in the pit??

Whole Lot Of Leavin' triggered another intensive feet stomping on the floor. It's so easy to dance until we drop on the country songs! However, unlike yesterday, Jon didn't modify the first line of the song; he said: "It's pretty cold for late September." I liked something, and it also happened yesterday. After the solo, Jon sings: "You used to live to say you love me. Now you got one foot out the door. It's then you turn around and ask me: Do we got it anymore?" In the song, there is a pause before the chorus resumes. Live, everyone screams and Jon does a gesture with his arm to do both "bang bang" of the drum before resuming the chorus!

During We Got It Going On, Jon did like yesterday, he told us the part that Kenny from Big & Rich says before the solo and I didn't hear a lot of people say the "AMEN", but I shouted it, so it made up for it! Hahaha

I saw that there was someone in the first rows in the red seats on the right of the stage who had a fake Italy flag. I know that Jon went to see this a little closer at some point.

I also noticed that Jon spat a lot when he was singing a few songs and Richie too during These Days. This is what happens when you give your best to sing! Hahaha I know that Jon also spat on the ground on stage at some point. I imagine that too much saliva is like not having enough! It's the proof that I was close enough to notice details like these! Speaking of being close enough, I discovered the ultimate threshold to determine if someone is "close enough" or not; if the person is able to see the blue of Jon's eyes when he is at the main microphone, that means that the person is close enough! And I saw the blue of his eyes which is extraordinary by the way!

It was very hard hearing Jon when he was talking to us and even sometimes when he was singing. It seems like the sound was always cutting off. And it seems like it was the same in the higher sections... Let's say that I fortunately know the songs, because it wouldn't be the place to learn the lyrics, that's for sure!

I think that it's right before It's My Life as well that Jon wanted to put a quarter in the jukebox on stage like the day before. However, instead of pretending taking out change from his pockets, he asked Richie: "Hey Richie, got a quarter for the jukebox? A quarter??" It seemed plausible also that it was a real jukebox! hahaha

During It's My Life, Jon came on our side and he looked at me in the eyes while singing: "It's my life, it's now or never. I ain't gonna live forever, I just wanna live while I'm alive..." Woohoo! 2 consecutive nights! He leaned over to look at me, and I instinctively leaned forward while continuing singing at the top of my lungs! Hahaha I still had my fan club laminate around my neck, I will start believing that Jon tries to interact with these people before anyone else!

Before starting Bad Medicine, Jon asked: "Is there a doctor in the house?" as usual. (He also did it yesterday!) At the beginning of Bad Medicine, the tall drunk witch stood up on her seat up front. (Being more than 6 feet tall, she surely had to stand up on her seat for Jon to notice her, it's a known fact!) A security guard was trying to make her step down, but she couldn't even feel the guard's hand pulling her down. I lifted my head when I saw that, because I found her quite tenacious towards the guard. I then understood what was happening; Jon had spotted her, and he was singing while looking at her in the eyes. He even pointed the microphone towards her so she could say the "Bad Medicine!" at the beginning of the song. Fortunately, there was a reasonable distance between her and the microphone, so we didn't hear anything apart from the crowd who said it at the same time. I don't know why Jon bothered with interacting with this girl, she was so drunk!

Shout triggered a reaction similar to the previous day, everyone seemed to let off steam and Jon's voice was in shape to hold the note! Moreover, Jon had the same comment as yesterday about us starting to be warmed up after Shout! He really wanted to tease us!

Jon introduced Richie right before he started These Days at the main microphone. When Richie came closer to the microphone, the girl in front of me got closer to the stage with her banner with the sexual content. Richie saw it, quickly read it; he had a small smile. Jon then saw it, read it out loud (oh my god!) and Richie and him started laughing. When the girl came back to her seat, I gave her a thumb up! hahaha Then, while Jon was getting ready to go in the crowd in the middle of the floor on the right once again, Richie told us: "I would like to thank you all for the support you gave me this past year with everything that happened. It really means a lot to me." At that moment, I felt a lot of sympathy for Richie, we sent so many messages of condolences on the fan club message board when his father passed away earlier this year. I relived the sorrow that we had felt for Richie at that moment... Moreover, the moment was full of emotions, because These Days is still a quite touching song and the fact that Richie was singing it, it was as if everyone had felt his sorrow suddenly! Just thinking back about it, I'm emotional! A little tear appeared at the corner of my eyes at that moment when Richie started singing, it's crazy how their music can make me feel strong emotions! I even had the chance to capture one of my most beautiful pictures of Richie during this song!

Bon Jovi - Bell Centre, Quebec, Canada (November 15, 2007)

Like I had anticipated, after These Days, a spotlight turned on towards Jon on my right. At least, I was expecting it more than the day before! There were several people around me, mostly girls behind me, who were really wondering where Jon was! Hahaha I sang at the top of my lungs again during (You Want To) Make A Memory while singing off-key as much as the day before! There is so little music in this song, that we were able to hear ourselves quite easily. At the end of the song, Richie sang a few "ooh ooh ooh" and then, he disappeared from up front. I was really wondering what was happening to him. A few minutes later, I understood everything; Richie joined Jon on the platform in the crowd! I was freaking out! They sang the acoustic version of I'll Be There For You from This Left Feels Right on the platform together! I am not a fan of this version, the original is way better! At some point, I started swinging my arms in the air to the beat, naturally! We sang the "oh oh oh, oh oh oh ooohhh" at the end, but they didn't last very long.

Richie returned on stage immediately after and Jon got rid of his guitar. I had the intuition that they would continue with Bed Of Roses, but I found it strange that they would play it 2 nights in a row. When I heard the first notes of Bed Of Roses, the This Left Feels Right version that I adore, my dream of dancing with Jon died once again. I had both my banners ready, one hooked in my pants and the other one in my right back pocket... I then took the opportunity to take a few pictures. I saw that there was a girl a few rows behind me in the middle who was also singing like me, with as much passion. I then closed my eyes and I let myself being rocked by my favorite song. I even had another tear coming up to my eyes, I don't know if it's because of the fact that I was hearing the song for a second time in 2 days or if it's because I would have had a good seat to take the chance in going on stage if Jon sang it on stage... What still makes me feel better is that Jon didn't dance with any girl when he came back on stage by the boards, but several people were able to touch him, as usual. I took my banner hooked in my pants (the one I had 2 years ago that reads: "Bed Of Roses 3876 X in 1 year"), I positioned it correctly and when Jon jumped on stage to finish the song, I spontaneously raised my banner as high as my arms. Jon never looked in my direction, so I brought it down after a few seconds... Grrr

When Jon was jumping at the same time as the beat, I was also jumping at the same time as him. At some point, I jumped with my camera in its case which was tied to my belt. The camera was moving a little everywhere, so I was holding the case not to break the camera! Hahaha During a song, I was jumping so much that my fan club laminate came to hit me in the face! Oops! Sometimes as well, when Jon was raising his hands in the air, I was doing the same as usual. Sometimes, I had my camera in my hands and I noticed at some point that it was probably not very good for the camera if I shook it vertically! I still consider that I have calmed down throughout the years, because despite the jumps and the scattered screams, I sing at the top of my lungs and I appreciate the band on stage a lot more than at my first shows in the white seats at the Forum! Manon, I think that you would be good to come back with me, I'm no longer the wild hysterical and uncontrollable thing I was before! Hahaha However, if I believe my coworker Sonia, I can easily be spotted in the crowd. The day after, she told me: "Hey, you were wearing a red tank top, right? I could see you up front. You were jumping, jumping, jumping, then you were taking a few pictures, and you were jumping again... You were a real picture machine, it was incredible!" I even succeeded in taking a picture of myself in front of the band. It was not easy to take a picture of myself and not look stupid! There were plenty of people who were getting their picture taken by other people in the first rows on my right, so I did the same!

There was a very drunk guy several rows behind me, in the middle of the floor, near the aisle. He seemed to enjoy himself very much by imitating Richie at the guitar, it was a little pathetic to see him! Security guards had to keep a close eye on him, because he was always trying to get even closer to the stage! During the encores, the guy stepped forward up to my row and one of the guards shrugged like he meant: "What are you doing, I told you a million times tonight that you don't have the right to do that! Look at yourself, you look stupid!" Hahaha And he went to move him over to bring him back to his seat!

I discovered a surprise by looking at my pictures from the show (see picture below). The original picture is a little blurry, but it seems like I succeeded in taking a picture of Jon while he was looking in my camera! hahaha

Bon Jovi - Bell Centre, Quebec, Canada (November 15, 2007)

Jon threw a guitar pick in the crowd towards the end of the show, I don't know why, but it was the first time that I noticed this gesture in 11 shows!

I was very surprised to see the band not play the song called Just Older at all, the song which seemed to have become their anthem at some point. It's too bad, but I liked the set list nonetheless, I have nothing to complain about!

I find it funny when Jon asks: "Are you still with me?" As if we would leave anyway! The crowd reacts well however to this kind of questions, it's a good sign! hahaha

We had the privilege of hearing a song that they don't play often these days: Keep The Faith! It was like in the old times of the 1990's, we were raising our hands very high in the air when Jon was singing "Faith!" at the beginning of each chorus!

I think that it's towards the end of Who Says You Can't Go Home that the girl beside me took my hand, raised my arm in the air and started swinging my arm and her friend's arm to the beat! Hahaha You only see this kind of thing happening in the first rows up front, I'm sure of it! She had stamina in her arms, because we continued throughout the song. I had no problem with this, because I can hold my arms in the air during a whole song!

When Livin' On A Prayer began, the same girl tried to take my arm again, but then, it wasn't really a song to raise our arms, so I took my hand away, because I still had pictures to take! Hahaha She then came towards me and she got out of the row. She spent the song dancing in the aisle, just in front of me. Security guards let her do it and it seemed to be her favorite song, so I let her do it as well. She immediately went back in the row as soon as the song ended anyway. We must be a little tolerant in life, must we not?

Before the lights went off for the encores, Jon thanked us for being there and he told us: "Take care and be careful on the road back home tonight." It's fun to know that Jon worries about us like that! Hahaha Then, the band disappeared in the dark and people started singing the "olé olé olé olé" once again. Even if people sing loudly, I don't understand what this has to do with a rock show!

When the band came back, Jon started singing almost a cappella Hallelujah, a song originally written by Leonard Cohen. I heard this song when the band started playing it in concert a while ago on television. I had found it good at that moment, but it's nothing compared to what I felt in concert when I heard it live. The only problem with this song is that when I was singing, I could hear myself very well (like during (You Want To) Make A Memory), and I was really singing off-key. This song is not easy to sing at the top of our lungs! Hallelujah was so touching, I closed my eyes during part of the song and I felt a connection so strong with Jon at that moment, there are no words to describe what I felt. I was living an incredible experience, as if I were falling in love with the band on another level. I got very emotional while singing and another tear came to my eyes. The day after the concert, I had a hard time eating breakfast, because I had the song in my head and I was not able to get rid of this feeling. Maryse adored the song as much as me, it is reassuring to know that another fan closed her eyes while the band was right in front of us!

It really surprised me, several people left at the beginning of the encores in the bleachers and on the floor around me, mostly in the middle of the floor. You know, surprises come during the encores! Too bad for them! However, it didn't help security to see so many people leave! Several people were trying to improve their situation by stepping forward in the empty seats. The guards were making them turn around quite quickly!

After Hallelujah, the band started Wanted Dead Or Alive, but to my great surprise, Jon sang the first verse this time! I was a little frustrated, because it must be since 2001 that we sing the first verse alone without Jon's or Richie's help! It was almost insulting to know that Jon wanted to sing this part! Hahaha

Before starting playing I Love This Town, Jon said: "I love Montreal, I love this town!" It was a brilliant introduction to the song, it was brilliant on their part to write this song in the first place! During I Love This Town, a girl made her way through just behind me by pretending that she wanted to take pictures up front. The guard didn't believe her and started insisting for her to go back to her seat, because she had not spent the evening behind me at all! The girl didn't want to leave and I heard her argue with the guard. I then started dancing like crazy by raising my arm in the air and hitting her quite hard on purpose with my elbow when I put down my arms. Strangely, the girl went back to her seat after a few hits! Hahaha

I don't remember when exactly anymore in the show, but the band took an official bow (it must have been after Wanted Dead Or Alive...). Afterwards, the band got together again after an encore, and I saw Tico say to Jon that they had to play other songs, that the crowd was too crazy to leave us like that! Jon then still had his ear plugs in his ears. I saw Maryse's banner on the giant screen which was just above our heads, and it's probably what convinced Tico! Hahaha The band then started playing Treat Her Right, another cover that the band sometimes does at the end of the show. It's the song to dance and continue partying! I put away my camera not long after the beginning of the song, because I wanted to fully enjoy the last moments spent with the band. Towards the end of the song, Jon headed towards the left of the stage, very close to Diane, and he jumped off the stage and started running across the whole floor on the left side while singing the "hey hey hey hey"!!!! I was freaking out! Several people were able to touch Jon. When he got to our level, I was under the impression that he was the closest I had been to him, despite 14 seats which separated us! I think that I was under this impression, because usually, I see Jon higher compared to me, and then, he was there before my eyes on the same level! I thought at this moment that he was a really handsome man and I would have liked to be able to touch him! I thought for one moment that he would come back in the left aisle on the floor where I was. I really saw myself being able to touch him easily, and I freaked out! But he left the floor by one of the doors at the back and he didn't come back on stage! At that moment, everyone was looking at the back and we were wondering where Jon had gone to. I then turned around to see that the band was also leaving; David was practically waving for nothing, because nobody was looking forward. I felt bad for the band members, they disappeared from the stage without everyone applauding them! I looked at Pauline at that moment and she told me: "But, Jon is crazy to come across the floor like that without any warning!" hahaha

It was an excellent show; probably the second best that I have seen so far! I was close to the stage, they played extraordinary songs and Jon was very much in shape, anyway, he seemed less old than yesterday with the same haircut and he was in a very good mood!

It didn't take us as long to leave the Bell Centre parking lot, the return to Longueuil to Maryse's workplace went smoothly! I went to sleep at about the same time as the previous day. The day after, I couldn't feel my body anymore, it was as if my body were a separate entity from my mind, it was special... I was cold even if my hands were very hot; it must have been the love for Jon I imagine! My coworker who had bought tickets at the last minute for Thursday's show came to see me the next morning and she told me in French, she who is an anglophone: "C'était malade!" hahaha


We are now 3 days after the second show, and I don't feel very well; I don't have a lot of appetite, I cannot stop thinking about Jon and his band and I bitterly regret not having bought tickets for the Ottawa show the next Saturday! The lack of appetite can also be explained by the fact that I have a hard time eating, because I didn't think I would scrape the inside of my cheeks with my braces by singing at the top of my lungs and by screaming. The day after the second show, I could not eat without having a sharp pain in my mouth at each jaw movement!

Everything that comes to my mind right now is a part of the lyrics of the song called Seat Next To You on the new Bon Jovi album: "Baby, say that you'll take me wherever you're going to." I would follow them so much everywhere after these 2 beautiful evenings spent with them! I sincerely believe that it's harder each time I see the band to get over it emotionally afterwards, because it seems to me like the depression feeling is always growing following a show!

In conclusion, I thank Matt Bongiovi in this review for having kept the fan club alive, since I wasn't able to talk to him!

Copyright © 2007 Marie-Hélène Cyr

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