More than four years after his surprising and somewhat acrimonious departure from Bon Jovi, guitarist Richie Sambora is looking forward to a warm reunion with his former bandmates at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony during April in Cleveland.
"It's the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame -- it'll be a joyous occasion," Sambora tells Billboard after Bon Jovi was announced as part of the Rock Hall's class of 2018, joining the Cars, Dire Straits, the Moody Blues, Nina Simone and "Early Influence" Sister Rosetta Tharpe. "I was there for 31 years and we sold 150 million records or something and we put a lot of asses in seats in stadiums around the world and made a lot of people happy. I did so many different jobs in that band, so, yeah, I'm showing up for that. Everybody should have a smile on their face and a smile in their hearts and it should be a celebration of what we did."
Earlier on Wednesday Jon Bon Jovi -- who was inducted with Sambora into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2009 -- confirmed that Sambora would be joining the band at the ceremony, telling Billboard that, "He was my right hand for a long time, so there was never ill will, just like I told everybody. (He) just didn’t show up anymore. We went on, but he was there for three decades and he should be there to celebrate the moment. So he'll be invited to join the rest of the band in all of the festivities."