Friday, May 6, 2022

"I'll Be There for You" by Bon Jovi

#1 Alert!
Song#:  3824
Date:  03/04/1989
Debut:  82
Peak:  1 (1 week)
Weeks:  22
Genre:  Hard Rock, Glam Rock

Pop Bits:  Bon Jovi's fourth album, New Jersey, got started on the right foot with its first two singles making the Pop Top 3 including the #3 "Born to Be My Baby." After pushing out a pair of rockers, the band changed tactics for their next single and issued out this big power ballad. It surprisingly debuted a bit low on the Pop chart, but within two weeks it flew up into the Top 40. Eventually, the tune would wind its way up to the top of the chart becoming the band's fourth #1. It would end up being their last song to reach that position. The tune would also get to #5 Rock. By this point in time the album had been certified for selling over four million copies. This hit would help increase that to five million by the end of May '89.

ReduxReview:  This sentimental power ballad hit the airways at just the right time. Glam rock was pretty much at its peak and it seemed the bigger the power ballad, the better. Bon Jovi and producer Bruce Fairbairn cranked this ditty up to 11 and it paid off. The tune was a lighter-waving, swoon-worthy track that was destined to top the Pop chart. I thought it was one of the better tracks from New Jersey and it probably should have been the second single. It wasn't in the same category as classics like "Wanted Dead or Alive," but it was a solid tune that gave them a final #1 Pop hit.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  Bon Jovi's hard rock sound was not something that was going to be heard on country radio. A few of their songs, if rearranged, could pass for country tunes, but at the height of late 80s glam rock era, the band didn't need to shill their wares to a whole other audience. Plus it probably would have been difficult to get country stations at the time to accept the band especially since at the time the format was going through changes and returning to a more traditional sound following the country-pop explosion of the early 80s. However, by the 2000s, country music was again going through changes and some artists that would become stars were influenced by rock. Bon Jovi picked up on this and so for their 2005 album Have a Nice Day, the band recorded the song "Who Says You Can't Go Home" as both a rocker in their standard sound and then as a country-influenced duet with Jennifer Nettles, lead singer of the popular country duo Sugarland. It would be the third single released from the LP. The rock version would get to #23 Pop. The country version would end up reaching #1 on the Country chart. After that success, Bon Jovi then worked with on a more country-styled album with Nashville producer Dann Huff. Lost Highway would be released in 2007 and feature guest appearances by country stars Big & Rich and LeAnn Rimes. The band's duet with Rimes, "Till We Ain't Strangers Anymore," would be released as a single and get to #47 Country.


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