In May 2020 Jon Bon Jovi participated in Rise Up New York: The Robin Hood Relief Benefit (2020). This was a telethon to raise awareness and funds for Covid19 relief in NYC. Musicians, actors, film directors, and chefs contributed to the hourlong virtual event, which was hosted by Tina Fey. Over $115 million was raised.
Jon Bon Jovi submitted a pre-recorded, socially-distanced It’s My Life, the lead single from the band Bon Jovi’s 7th album Crush, 2000. It was an appropriate choice as “It’s My Life is Bon Jovi’s most well-known post-1980s hit single and helped introduce the band to a new, younger fanbase” (Wikipedia). The song has become a rallying cry for fans.
Many YouTube commenters note how good the then 58-year-old Bon Jovi looks. Others remark on his voice: “I like how this is a calm, mellow version of the original. I don’t get why people are saying Jon’s lost his voice, he still sounds amazing”. Another comment says: “He hasn’t lost his voice, it’s just matured with him. Like a fine wine, it’s better with age”. A final comment on Bon Jovi’s singing: “He never lost his voice, he just aged. Still sounds phenomenal”.
Since being posted on YouTube, the video has 6m views, which demonstrates Jon Bon Jovi’s continued appeal. So case closed: Jon still rocks! Many fans comment on growing up with the song “It is amazing how you can understand this song 2 different ways… the original when you were young, ‘I don’t care nothing, it is my life’ and now growing up ‘it is my life, enjoy it because I ain’t gonna live forever’ Masterpiece”. Without further ado, here is the original Bon Jovi version of It’s My Life:
Clearly, the original version rocks harder and faster, which raises a final recurring theme in the comments on the 2020 Rise Up New York recording. Fan comments note how the recasting of the music adds poignancy to the song: “It’s great how lyrics hit deeper when things are slowed down”.
Speaking of the meaning of It’s my Life, Jon Bon Jovi has said “I thought I was writing very self-indulgently about my own life and where I was in it. I didn’t realize that the phrase ‘It’s My Life’ would be taken as being about everyone – by teenagers, by older guys, mechanics, whatever.
‘It’s my life, and I’m taking control.’ Everyone kind of feels that way from time to time” (Wikipedia). Given how adrift and concerned people were in the early days of Covid19, Jon Bon Jovi couldn’t have chosen a better song from his repertoire to sing on the New York benefit show. If you would like to see more from Jon Bon Jovi, you can subscribe to their Instagram.