Jon Bon Jovi talked about Wednesday’s Jersey 4 Jersey benefit concert for COVID-19 relief as well as canceling his band’s summer tour due to the coronavirus outbreak during an interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe.
Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Halsey, Tony Bennett, SZA and a reunited Fountains of Wayne (with Sharon Van Etten taking part in the tribute to the late Adam Schlesinger) will all perform from self-isolation for the special, which will air tonight at 7:00 p.m. EST via Apple Music and AppleTV, E Street Radio on SiriusXM, as well as local radio and TV stations.
“I was tasked with curating a show. The obvious and easiest first phone call was to the King of New Jersey, and he said, ‘Yes.’ So, once Bruce was on…” Bon Jovi told Lowe. “My hero, my friend, Bruce, signed on quick and then we got Tony Bennett, which blows my mind. Then, we’ve got a bunch of stuff. Charlie Puth is a local. He grew up right across the river here. We got SZA, who’s a Jersey girl, and Halsey, who’s a Jersey girl. And then, of course, a lot of great actors from [Danny] DeVito to Chris Rock to Whoopi [Goldberg] and on and on and on. So it’s just a one-hour telethon to benefit our neighbors.”
Proceeds from the Jersey 4 Jersey special will benefit the newly launched New Jersey Pandemic Relief Fund (NJPRF).
“We all got to do our part. And whether it’s just staying at home or social distancing, that is just as important a part to play,” Bon Jovi continued. “The governor is a local. He lives near me here in Jersey. And his wife had come to me and said, ‘We have to do something specific for New Jersey because it’s the second hardest-hit state in the nation.’ A lot of small businesses and working people are wondering where that next paycheck is coming from, because they’ve either been furloughed or laid off and they’re not sure when they’ll get back to work.”
On Tuesday, Bon Jovi canceled their summer tour in support of their upcoming album Bon Jovi 2020 — which has been postponed from its planned May 15th release date until the fall — due to the coronavirus pandemic; the band’s keyboardist David Bryan previously revealed that he had tested positive to COVID-19, and has since recovered.
“We’ve canceled it, it’s not postponed, and so people are going to be able to get refunds. The reason that we canceled instead of postponing it for a year is because I was very aware that folks are going to need that money and that money’s going to help with rent or groceries and credit card bills,” Bon Jovi said of the tour.
“In this time of uncertainty, we just wanted folks to know that they were there for us for these three-plus decades. We’re there for them,” he added. “We will be back when it’s OK to be back. That’s right. It’s not postponement. I don’t want you holding onto a piece of paper when you got a credit card bill sitting on your kitchen table.”
During the interview, Bon Jovi also shared his thoughts on Jersey-born artists Whitney Houston and Lauryn Hill and elaborated on his friendship with Springsteen.