By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
Over time, pretension gets tiresome—and to devastating effects.
So, from time to time, we just plain need some good-natured, light-hearted stupid fun. How else could you explain music-based pop culture phenomena of the recent past such as The Vengaboys and that guy (?) named Sanjaya?
It must be with this understanding that, at press time, the only available tickets to the upcoming double-billed Bon Jovi/Daughtry concert at the American Airlines Center are located behind the stage.
I mean, that's why I've attended my fair share of Bon Jovi concerts over the years: There's a mindless fun to be had at these performances. A sense of fulfillment too, actually. You can't really understand the sheer audacity of a song such as "Lay Your Hands on Me" until you hear it performed to a sold-out arena crowd of 40-something cougars and never-weres.
Better yet, you don't really have to think at a Bon Jovi show. You just soak it all in, appreciating the onstage ass-shaking and fist-pumping for what it is: fodder.
And that's why you've gotta imagine Chris Daughtry and his band of merry wankers are absofreakinlutely stoked about the gig they've lined up on their current tour, opening for Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora and the gang. Really, has there ever been a more appropriate pairing in the history of rock 'n' roll? A year and a half after its release, Daughtry, the band's self-titled debut, is still going insanely strong, having sold 4 million copies in the States alone, and boasts four bona fide hit radio singles with "It's Not Over," "Home," "Over You" and "Feels Like Tonight." Hey! That sounds like the story of another band named after its lead singer's surname—although, to Daughtry's credit, while Bon Jovi also released a self-titled debut, that band didn't really strike it big until its third release, the chart-busting Slippery When Wet.
Surely that's the only area in which Chris beats out our boy Jon Bon, right? Well, let's check the tale of the tape to see who's more "rockin'" for sure...
Bon Jovi: Sold something like a bazillion records worldwide, including somewhere around 28 million for Slippery When Wet.
Daughtry: Off to a good start with that 4 mil we mentioned earlier—but he's got to prove he's got himself some staying power before he can truly sniff at Bon Jovi's numbers.
Advantage: Bon Jovi.
Bon Jovi: Guest-starred on TV's Ally McBeal, The West Wing and Sex & the City. Starred in big-screen features such as U-571 and the memorable Vampire: Los Muertos. Scored the soundtrack to Young Guns II and had a few notable solo hits along his career. But the biggest crossover of all? Going country with his band on 2007's Lost Highway, which broke a whole new market open for the band.
Daughtry: Um...not much. But the guy deserves huge props for the face he dropped when he was voted off of American Idol. Oh, and for turning down the opportunity to become Fuel's lead singer. Actually, he deserves really huge props for that.
Bon Jovi: The hair, the hair, the smile, the hair. (Sigh.)
Daughtry: The shaved head so no one talks about your receding hairline.
Advantage: Bon Jovi.
Bon Jovi: My dad knows who Jon Bon Jovi is.
Daughtry: My next-door neighbor's kid lurves Daughtry.
...and the winner is:
Well, the tape shows Bon Jovi as the winner. Tough to argue there—guy's got a VH1 Behind the Music under his belt. But, c'mon, when rock clichés abound onstage for all to see, don't we all win?
Actually, I'm too pretentious to answer that.