Thursday, November 6, 2014

Keep the Faith Stays True to Bon Jovi Essence

Hi Everyone: As I'm sitting here in my room listening to "Livin' on a Prayer," I thought that now would be the perfect time to tell you about an amazing Bon Jovi tribute band that I saw recently with a friend. I've been a die-hard Bon Jovi fan for 20 years and have seen them six times on five different tours in Ottawa, Toronto, and Montreal. You never forget your first time! WOW! Keep the Faith (KTF) hails from Toronto and is fronted by the good looking and dynamic Chris Newman, a.k.a. Jon Bon Jovi. With his hair cut, attire, Superman tattoo, stage mannerisms, energy, and voice, Chris is quite Jon Bon Jovi-esque. Chris and I spoke quite a bit before the show at D'Arcy McGee's Irish Pub in Kanata (Ottawa) on Sat., Nov. 1st, and I found out that he's been a BJ fan since "Born to Be My Baby" came out and has seen BJ 35 times! He's been in the pit during the last 10 shows, so that JBJ himself recognizes him! Ah, it was nice to talk to another hardcore fan who appreciates the incredible power and beauty of Bon Jovi music. I was also pleased to receive a copy of the setlist! Chris and the boys started off the night with "Lay Your Hands on Me," a great song from BJ's fourth album, New Jersey, which came out in 1988. They then launched into fan favourite "You Give Love a Bad Name" and "Roulette," a song that true BJ fans would appreciate from the first Bon Jovi album in 1984. KTF played for three and a half hours (complete with three encores!) and did a great mix of songs from Bon Jovi's 13 studio albums. They even threw in some extras, which included "Pretty Woman," "Start Me Up," and "Twist and Shout." My personal favourite was Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah." Such an awesome song. My highlight of the night was "Always," which Chris performed beautifully during the second encore. That song made me fall in love with BJ when I was 13 and in Grade 7 and will forever be my favourite song. Of course, I also really appreciated classics like "Livin' on a Prayer" (second encore) and "Bed of Roses" to name a few. KTF has played D'Arcy McGee's six times in three years. It was, however, my first time seeing them. Together for eight years, KTF truly strives to give its audiences an authentic Bon Jovi experience. They stay true to the essence of Bon Jovi with their music and energy. Chris even has his maracas taped exactly how JBJ does and uses a similar acoustic guitar to him! I also tip my hat to guitarist JT Harris who was only playing his second show as the one and only Richie Sambora and Steph Snitman (a.k.a. Tico Torres) who not only plays drums well but has a pretty good voice too. Doug Adams (a.k.a. Hugh McDonald) is 62 and plays his bass enthusiastically. And how John Jablonski (a.k.a. David Bryan) maintains that crazy mullet while playing keyboard is beyond me! All I can say is that Keep the Faith provided a high energy show that essentially left me on a high and helped me remember why I love Bon Jovi so much! Thanks, Chris and Keep the Faith (! Have a Nice Day!!! Dahlia

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Long Overdue!

Hi Everyone! Thanks to the ongoing encouragement (and "nagging"!) of a couple of writer friends (you know who you are!), I am writing my first blog post in three years!!!!! It was definitely a long time coming and long overdue! I confess that I haven't been writing nearly as much I was years ago. My passion hasn't died; it just hasn't been nourished in a very long time. In a sense, it has been neglected like someone crying out for love with no one hearing its cries. I saw one of my writer friends today actually and over a lovely cup of tea, I told her that there's a Bible verse that says something along the lines of how without vision the people perish. I'm not a religious person, but there's a lot of wisdom in that verse. Writing has been my passion since I was 11, and I've kind of let it die over the years because of life experiences and what not. You know the expression "Shit happens"? Well, life happens too! I wonder if perhaps I'd be a bit happier if I was writing more. I am a writer after all, and it's what I was meant to do. Some things you just know. While I have been freelancing articles for a community resource centre newsletter for a year now, I have not been cultivating my poetic side nor have I attempted to start writing a crime fiction novel. I'm addicted to the genre (and Criminal Minds)! Maybe it's time to check out the Capital Crime Writers or at least freelance more and perhaps write a poem every now and then. Then again, baby steps. 'One day at a time' as my Uncle Johnny always says. I'll slowly start by blogging again. Have a great day! Dahlia