Bon Jovi reflects on the death of George Floyd, the protests that followed and this moment in U.S. history on the band’s new song “American Reckoning.”
“I was moved to write ‘American Reckoning’ as a witness to history,” Jon Bon Jovi said in a statement. “I believe the greatest gift of an artist is the ability to use their voice to speak to issues that move us.”
“America’s on fire/There’s protests in the streets/Her conscience has been looted/And her soul is under siege/Another mother’s crying as history repeats/I can’t breathe,” Jon Bon Jovi sings before delivering a stark description of Floyd’s death: “God damn those eight long minutes/Laying face down in cuff on the ground/Bystanders pleaded for mercy/As one cop shoved a kid in the crowd/When did a judge and jury/Become a badge and a knee on these streets?”
The band and Island Records’ net proceeds from the download of “American Reckoning” will support the Bryan Stevenson’s Equal Justice Initiative through December 31, 2020.
Although recorded after the rest of the album, “American Reckoning” will also feature on the group’s postponed new LP Bon Jovi 2020, which was pushed from May 15th to the fall due to the coronavirus pandemic.