Bon Jovi Bring Hit Parade to New Meadowlands Stadium

New Jersey heroes deliver fan favorites, plus Leonard Cohen and the Doors covers, for 55,000 fans

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Back in October of last year, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band committed the old Giants Stadium to the mercy of the wrecking ball with an epic farewell party. Eight months later, it’s only fitting that Bon Jovi, the Garden State’s second most-famous sons, were on hand to christen the New Meadowlands Stadium, delivering a two-hour-plus hit parade for 55,000 fans.

Check out photos from Bon Jovi's opening night show at the New Meadowlands Stadium.

"New Meadowlands Stadium: I like, I like, I like," frontman Jon Bon Jovi said as he greeted fans in his new back yard. He was right: the new arena is far superior to the old one. The seats are comfier, the lines are shorter and, as the band began their set, the PA system sounded infinitely crisper than the previous one, which frequently reduced most performers to a blaring, messy noise. However, Bon Jovi did run into one snafu when the sound gave out completely about 45 minutes in to the set. And while the band seemed oblivious to the deafening silence heard through the rest of the stadium, fans rallied quickly to show their support, turning the group's 1984 breakthrough hit "Runaway" into a jubilant sing-along.

Once the PA recovered, Bon Jovi unleashed a string of their most well-known songs, including an electric medley of "Bad Medicine" and a cover of the Doors' "Roadhouse Blues." The band then toned things down a bit with a semi-acoustic set. After Jovi and keyboardist David Bryan walked to the front-lip of the walkway, the group ran through a reverential take on Leonard Cohen’s gorgeous ballad "Hallelujah." Stripped down versions of "Something For The Pain" and "Someday I’ll Be Saturday Night" also added to the campfire spirit. But then Bon Jovi unleashed one final dose of anthemic, stadium rock: a firework-studded "Keep The Faith" and raucous, show-closing versions of "Wanted Dead Or Alive" and "Livin’ On A Prayer." Fans greeted these classics with euphoria — and you could tell from Jovi's beaming smile that he never gets tired of witnessing it.

Setlist:
"Blood on Blood"
"We Weren't Born to Follow"
"You Give Love a Bad Name"
"Whole Lotta Leavin'"
"Born to Be My Baby"
"Lost Highway"
"Raise Your Hands"
"Runaway"
"When We Were Beautiful"
"Superman Tonight"
"We Got It Going On"
"Bad Medicine/Roadhouse Blues"
"It's My Life"
"Love's the Only Rule"
"Lay Your Hands on Me"
"Hallelujah"
"I'll Be There For You"
"Something for the Pain"
"Someday I'll Be Saturday Night"
"Have a Nice Day"
"Work for the Working Man"
"Who Says You Can't Go Home"
"Keep the Faith"

Encore:
"Dry County"
"Wanted Dead or Alive"
"Living on a Prayer"