Bon Jovi

No More Mr. 'Nice' Guys

BonTo Jon Bon Jovi, each new Bon Jovi album is a musical diary chronicling moments in time. But for the Island Def Jam set "Have a Nice Day" (out this week), the veteran rocker says he looked further within himself and at the world than he has in the band's 20-year history.

"There are songs that are socially conscious, especially in light of what happened both [in the] pre- and post-election period in our country, when I witnessed polarization that I have never seen before," Bon Jovi says. On a personal level, he says, "songs like 'I Wanna Be Loved' are more introspective than I've ever been."

Of course, Bon Jovi hopes the new CD will find a wide audience, but says he does not create music with that goal in mind. "The magic is, we don't gun for anybody," he says. "What happens, happens naturally ... We were as surprised as anyone when [the 2000 single] 'It's My Life' found a whole other generation of people, really young kids. Who knew?"

He sees such new songs as "Welcome to Wherever You Are" and "Last Man Standing" (a tribute to Bob Dylan) appealing to adult listeners while Bon Jovi's 10-year-old son "and his friends on their surfboards are cranking 'Have a Nice Day' and will play that next to a Green Day record." The group will kick off a fall tour Nov. 2 in Des Moines, Iowa.