CRUSH : Track By Track Interview Interviewed by Jeff Newman

Jon: When I came up with the title it was an accident.We were looking for something that would perhaps mean different things to different people. It can either be looked at as I've got a crush on you or I got crushed last
night, you know, I mean it can mean different things to the listener.
Richie: So we started just to kind of throw around things like Slippery When Wet. It really doesn't mean anything but it's kind of sexy and cool, you know what I mean, it's like you can imagine your mind starts to go. Actually, you ever seen some girls in a shower together that's what I start to think immediately! Jon just started saying some stuff and came up with Crush and I like that a lot. I just thought that was cool. It's got sex. It' s got power and it's fun.

Jon: We started playing around and I came up with the title It's My Life and it was really just The Animals and we wrote that big old anthemic chorus.
Richie: Lyrically it nods towards Tommy and Gina and we kind of bring those characters in the second verse of this song. We also bring back the talk box because it seemed to be more of our signature sound. We also use on the track particularly to make it updated was a drum loop and lots of different drum machines and stuff like that to combine it with a real drum set to kind of give it classic Bon Jovi sound but an updated 2000 version.

Jon: When people hear it now they are very surprised that I have written a song like this, you know, both in lyrical content and musical value. But it' s different and again has a rather positive chorus in that what it says
lyrically is Say it isn't so, tell me it's not true because you still have to be able to dream, you have to be able to believe in role models, heroes or Santa Claus. You know once you forget those dreams it becomes a boring

Jon: If I were to write record credits on this album sleeve it would have said Thank you for loving me,Thank you to Brad Pitt so that would have started a hundred rumors! But the truth is a lot of times I got stories from movies. In this case, I went to see the movie Meet Joe Black. Brad Pitt is holding Clare Forlani in his arms at the end of the movie and he says thank you for loving me and I went gotta go! I ran home and wrote that chorus and much like Always or Bed of Roses or a lot of the hit ballads we've had over the years, I've always written them by myself. They are rather easy for me to do. I saw the outline in that movie, this was gonna be something I could knock out in ten minutes.

Richie: Just the way Jon sang the song particularly was very very appealing to me because it was fresh, something uncharted. He's almost speaking through the verses with a small melody on it. I don't think we could have done it on the past records but as Jon's maturing as a vocalist I think that he's able to do different things and I wanted to show the side of the band from production standpoint. So that was a song that I particularly guided onto this record and made sure it was gonna get on be cause I had a passion on it.

Jon: The Japanese market called and asked do we have a song would fit this Kobay Relief Fund, This thing called Jay Friends which is the boy bands in Japan, that they could record and had a lyrical message that would support future generations even and we said as a matter of fact we do. So we sent them the original demo, these guys recorded it and it has sold somewhere close to 800/900,000 singles already. It was our first Japanese No.1 song on the domestic charts. In all the hits we've had in Japan, it was the first domestic number one single.
Richie: I came up with a crazy idea, this double time jam which lets me go crazy as a guitar player. They basically let me go nuts for 3 minutes which I think people dig live, and it also gives me a chance to expand myself as a guitar player. I think what that does is tells people this band is still a rock band with a lot of testosterone and we can actually really play our instruments. There's a lot of bands out there that get deals nowadays and I ask how long have you been playing and they say oh I've been playing for 6 months and that's what they sound like. We wanted to prove to people that number 1- we can really play and number 2- it excites people to come and see us live which is a big part of our whole allure.

Jon: The lyrics say one simple thing in the chorus I like the bed I'm sleeping in, just like me it's broken in, it's not old, just older. Like a favorite pairs of torn blue jeans, the skin I'm in's alright with me, not old, just older. That's sum it's up. When I sang this, my chest was out, my backbone was straight and I was excited singing it, and I saw that the audience felt that. Regardless of if you're 16, you think you were older than you were 12, or if you're 38 you think you're older than you were 25 and when you're 50 you're gonna think you were older than you were 35. So it's a question of feeling experience because of this song.

Jon: I think that my lyrical hero Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits could be proud of the pictures that I've created in this song. I think it's wonderful story in that it is a boy/girl song, I created a lot of pictures and always use my wife as the image of what I'm creating with it but there's more to the story than the cover. I think that will be one of the songs that I'll love to play at night.

Jon: Jerry Bruckheimer sent me the script of Armageddon and asked me to write a song for the soundtrack and perhaps for the movie and when I read the script I immediately knew that the character that Ben Affleck was playing leaving Liv Tyler to go and save the world, finding out that he's in love with Liv Tyler 's character and Bruce Willis being her dad in the film, was going to whip his ass for it, being the wild boy in the film, here was the story to me, this is what I was gonna write about. It was really obvious to me and I wrote the song and I like the song very much. I put it away because I found out that they had their ballad with Aerosmith doing the song. So it honed the lyric to make it a little more personal but the basis of it comes from the script Armageddon.

Jon: Richie came over to Rome while I was shooting U-571 to write. So we got together there and I said you know I've got a strange one here and it's called Captain Crash And The Beauty Queen From Mars. I said let's think of this guy. He said yeah let's make him more Ziggy Stardust and have this fictional story of these 2 screw ups who think that they on the cover of Time Newsweek and the cover of Rolling Stones all in the same week and really they can't get out of Their own way. But they're endearing characters so they've been completely fictionalized mind you, but also somebody that you would like to be.

Jon: She's A Mystery I wrote, believe it or not, at a songwriter's retreat. I was invited to the South of France at what was truly a castle in the middle of nowhere and it became one of the truly great writing. You would sit in a room with 2 other people and develop a song - not for you, not for them, for the wind, just to see what would happen, and you were forced to demo that song that day. So it was almost like a test, could you or could you not. I got up really early at dawn, picked up my guitar started playing and came up with this progression and that title and started writing it so that when we walked in there that day we knocked it out in ten minutes. The
song turned out so well that it actually made the band record which is not like us to do anything like this.

Jon: You initially hear this song and good or bad, or in different, you're like oh well, Jon Bon Jovi got the girl, isn't that great. But what you find out in the last lyric of the song is that she'll always be a five year old princess and it's about my daughter. I've never written a song about my kids before nor have I ever wanted to. I don't know what influenced it other than I just spit it out one day and I was really fond of the lyric and it's a
rock song and it's very up tempo with the surprise of being the last line. Every dad that has a daughter especially as his first child you know you think what have I done, this is my penance for the rest of my life! My joke about my daughter is I've always said she'll be the prettiest girl in the convent.

Jon: The old team of Richie and myself and Desmond Childs, we wrote this song together at least the first verse and part of the chorus but I thought of it as Going To A Go Go and was so excited about it that I kept pushing. When I came up home I wrote the rest of the lyric by myself and having already written music, roughed it up. We came and demo it, changed a couple more of the lyrics around. Certainly in the vein of You Give Love A Bad Name you'll wanna play it at night, it'll be a big audience thing.
Richie: It's fun, classic Bon Jovi track aka Bad Medicine, great guitar line, a fun lyric and it's about a party that lasts this one wild evening. We tried to lyrically take a guy from his doorstep, out through the evening and follow him around with a camera in our mind's eye as lyricists. He meets people, he meets a girl parties his ass off and does all that kind of stuff, so it was one of those that came together like that.

Jon: This is something that when I played for Richie. He said boy great verse, great b section. I said no that's the chorus and he said no great b section - thanks a lot brother! So we sat down and wrote a chorus for it and
he became a collaborator on the track. I'm glad that he pushed me further. It's in the vein of AC/DC stadium rock, you know, but a fun song, a real black T-shirt crowd thing.