The best song on the 2009 album The Circle is Brokenpromisedland. This song was written by Bon Jovi, Sambora, John Shanks and Desmond Child. Actually John Shanks also had a co-write with Bon Jovi and Sambora for This Is Love, This is Life.
Angels falling from the sky
Imagine that imagine that
Nobody getting out of here alive
No turning back no turning back
Who’s going to bail out all our shattered dreams
And scrape some truth off of these city streets
No time for praying get up off your knees
The GFC left a lot of people shattered and broken. As an artist, there was plenty of subject matter there for songs. What was done by the corrupt powers that be, has been done. We the people need to scrape ourselves back off the floor and start again.
Most of the songs on The Circle album sounded forced to me, except for this song. It was the only one that felt natural. The other songs could have been hits if they were sung by a band that lived through the GFC from the other side of the tracks. Songs like Work for The Working Man and We Weren’t Born To Follow are good songs but it didn’t sound right coming from Jon Bon Jovi, who charges a really high premium to be a JBJBackstage member, who charges really high prices on meet and greets and section A concert tickets and does anyone remember that whole debacle with Skid Row back in the late eighties. This is the one where Skid Row signed with Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora back when the Skid’s were just starting out. Essentially, Bon Jovi and Sambora ended up owning Skid Row’s publishing rights. This was no biggie at the time of the contract being signed, but then when the Skid Row album went five times platinum, it was. Sambora eventually gave his share of the deal back to Skid Row but Bon Jovi, didn’t.
Basically if mp3’s and Napster didn’t change the way music is consumed, Bon Jovi wouldn’t have done these large scale world tours ever again. During a 10 year period between 1994 and 2004, Bon Jovi didn’t even do a proper tour of Australia at all. Australian Bon Jovi fans are one of the largest and most loyal fan bases the band has and they ignored Australia during this period, playing special one off shows for certain festivals and just in one state. It’s like playing one show in New York and expecting LA people to attend it.
They were content on the income coming in from record / CD sales, publishing and radio royalties. Well that income has dried up and they need to earn their money the old fashion way, which means they have to hit the road. Anyway I digress. Back to Brokenpromisedland.
No one bailed us out during this period. The working man got nothing except pain. A whole lotta pain.
There’s hope I know
Out on that lonely road
Cause home is where you are and where I am
Breathe in breathe out
There’s only now
And all I got I’m holding in my hands
We’re breaking out of brokenpromisedland
We live, we work, we get paid, we have large houses on a poor man’s wage. When all that goes to hell, all that we have left is what we hold in our hands. It could be our kids, a suitcase, a loved one or some memories of what we could salvage. It becomes our most cherished possession.
Let’s close our eyes and just disappear
Slip through the cracks no looking back
We’ll get a million miles away from here
And let the past just fade to black
So what you learn to live with your regrets
No need to fear what hasn’t happened yet
Life will get you but you can’t forget
Australia wasn’t that bad during the GFC. Our banks remained stable and our jobs remained. But what it did do was make us realise that we need to change. We needed to re-evaluate what is important to us. If we couldn’t afford the large house, down size it. It’s okay to do so. It made us realise that we are not beholden to people’s judgements. We needed to do what we needed to do and what benefited us so that we don’t end up on our arse.
How many nights between 2008 and 2009 I just wished I was at any other place except the place I was at. I always wanted to live my life with no ‘what if’s’ however a lot of what if’s came into my life during this period. It is not something I regret, I have learned to live with the choices I made based on the information I had at that time.
Every time I hear Brokenpromisedland, all those emotions from 2008 to 2009 come back to me and I smile. I made it through to the other side and I can still smile. During that time I had a wife, a 4 year old, a 3 year old and a shell of a home. I still have my wife, my 4 year old is now turning 8, my 3 year old is now turning 7, my 1 year old will be turning 2 and the shell of a home is my family home. I broke out of the broken promised land and made my own promised land, so far removed from what the establishments want.