Blaze Of Glory is the debut solo studio album by Jon Bon Jovi. The album was released on 7 August 1990.
When it comes to bias, there’s no denying it. in my opinions, Blaze of Glory possesses a more flawless sound than Bon Jovi’s New Jersey.
In 100,000,000 Bon Jovi Fans Can’t Be Wrong, Jon Bon Jovi himself confesses that his album wasn’t simply about articulating the emotions of the characters in “Young Guns II.” Rather, this album represents the distillation of the immense pressure weighing heavily on his heart at the time.
It was between 1987 to 1990 when Bon Jovi reached the zenith of their fame with Slippery When Wet (1986) and followed it up with New Jersey (1988). The latter album placed a substantial burden on their shoulders, serving as a transitional foray into glam metal territory that they had never previously explored. Reluctantly succumbing to the influence of the music of that era, they couldn’t, however, shift gears too abruptly, fearing failure and a loss of their hard-won popularity.
New Jersey, while not as triumphant as their preceding masterpiece Slippery When Wet, remains an unparalleled commercial and cultural force in the world of rock music. The band’s ascent to the upper echelons of rock stardom garnered an enormous global fan base, cementing their status as the epitome of musical deities.
Their year-long odyssey on tour was a testament to their unparalleled musicianship and unfaltering commitment to their legions of devoted fans. But, as the unyielding grip of familiarity took hold, tensions brewed amongst the band members.
The tour eventually came to an end in the early 1990, and the members parted ways, each returning home via separate planes. A clear indication of the lingering boredom and dissatisfaction that had crept into their relationship with one another.
The group’s collective disposition could only be described as precarious, which explains the prolonged absence of their next album. However, amidst this tumultuous period Jon Bon Jovi unfurled his first solo album to an audience yearning for a fresh sonic experience. Not to be outdone, his bandmate Richie Sambora followed suit the following year, (accompanied by their cohorts David Bryan and Tico Torres.)
Blaze of Glory
The filmmakers behind Young Guns II extended an offer to Bon Jovi, entreating him to allow them to use his famed composition “Wanted Dead or Alive” (from Slippery When Wet) in their film. in the sequel to Billy the Kid, played by Emilio Estevez.
But Jon, ever the master of his craft, deemed the song unfitting for the movie’s mood, Jon Bon Jovi promptly composed a new song, “Blaze of Glory,” that would instead match the sequel’s essence. In doing so, he once again demonstrated his indomitable creative prowess.
on Bon Jovi’s creative energy was stoked by the challenge of crafting a song that captured the essence of Young Guns II. From that single tune, his mind began to race, birthing a plethora of new songs, enough to compile a complete album.
And thus, the world was graced with Blaze of Glory, an album whose very inspiration was derived from the film that served as its muse. The album could be described as a concept piece, as each track was intricately intertwined with the story of Billy the Kid and Pat Garrett, one an outlaw, the other a bounty hunter turned sheriff, responsible for the capture and death of the Kid.
While some of the album’s tunes were written for the film’s inclusion but ultimately left on the cutting room floor, the album’s thematic cohesion remained unbroken. In every sense, Blaze of Glory was a testament to the singular vision of Jon Bon Jovi, and a testament to the enduring power of music to convey complex emotions and stories.
The music in this set may not “glam” as in New Jersey. But with Blaze of Glory, Jon Bon Jovi’s song writing talent shines as bright as ever. He took risks as a solo artist, and it paid off. “Blaze of Glory” is a testament to that, evoking the feeling of a wanderer’s loneliness on the dry, desolate plains. The sharp, piercing guitar work of Jeff Beck combined with Jon Bon Jovi’s raw power propelled the song to the heart of Bon Jovi fan.
The album paints a vivid picture of life on the run, trying to survive in a world where the law is always on your tail. The emotions on display are palpable, and Jon Bon Jovi’s raspy vocals add a layer of loneliness and despair to tracks like “Miracle” and “Santa Fe”. The latter takes its name from the place where Billy the Kid was held before his trial, a sombre reminder of the harsh realities of life in the Wild West. And in “Bloody Money,” Bon Jovi seems to mock Pat Garett, a former friend turned sheriff who relentlessly hunts down his bounty.
With Blaze of Glory, Jon Bon Jovi proved that he was much more than just a frontman for a popular rock band. He was a talented songwriter with a unique perspective on life, and this album is a testament to that. Though he may never again write something as impactful as this, his place in the pantheon of rock legends is secure.
As I listen to Jon Bon Jovi’s Blaze of Glory album, one thing comes to mind: Bob Dylan. The rock star dedicated the song “Bloody Money” to Dylan, and it’s no wonder why. In 1973, Dylan released Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid, a soundtrack album for Sam Packinpah’s western movie of the same name. The album shares a similar melancholic tone with Blaze of Glory, but Bon Jovi’s musical style adds a rock edge that reaches listeners with greater intensity.
While Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid evokes a sense of sadness and gloom, Blaze of Glory also features songs that hark back to old rock ‘n’ roll, such as “You Really Got Me Now.” There’s even a faint hint of Little Richard influence in the background.
What’s remarkable is how Jon Bon Jovi broke free from the glam metal sound of his previous work to create this album. It’s been his last work that me, FR!DAY ! AM !N ROCK still holds up admirably today.
In 1990, all hair bands were on the verge of collapse. Blaze of Glory come with impeccable timing. Yet, despite the challenges, their unmistakable impact on the world of rock endures. The album became a crossroads for Bon Jovi, blending elements of both glam metal and adult rock, propelling them forward with unwavering momentum. Their journey stands as a testament to the lasting allure of rock music and the transformative nature of human bonds.
Blaze of Glory Track Listing:-
- “Billy Get Your Guns” – 4:49
- “Miracle” – 5:20
- “Blaze of Glory” – 5:35
- “Blood Money” – 2:34
- “Santa Fe” – 5:42
- “Justice in the Barrel” – 6:48
- “Never Say Die” – 4:54
- “You Really Got Me Now” – 2:24
- “Bang a Drum” – 4:44
- “Dyin’ Ain’t Much of a Livin'” – 4:40
- “Guano City” – 1:16
– All Songs by Jon Bon Jovi, Except “Guano City” by Alan Silvestri
- Jon Bon Jovi – vocals, backing vocals, guitars (tracks 2-3, 5-10), piano (track 3), harmonica (track 4), producer
- Kenny Aronoff – drums, percussion
- Jeff Beck – electric guitar (tracks 6, 10), slide guitar, guitar solo (tracks 1-3, 6-7, 9)
- Robbin Crosby – guitar (track 7)
- Bob Glaub – bass (tracks 5, 10)
- Randy Jackson – bass (tracks 1-3, 6-9)
- Ron Jacobs – engineer
- Elton John – piano (tracks 1, 10), backing vocals (track 10)
- Danny Kortchmar – guitar (tracks 1-2, 4-9), producer
- Dale Lavi – hand claps
- Myrna Matthews, Julia Waters, Maxine Waters – backing vocals (tracks 2, 6, 9, 10)
- Carmella Lento – backing vocals
- Aldo Nova – guitars, keyboards, piano, tambourine
- Phil Parlapiano – accordion (tracks 2, 4)
- Lou Diamond Phillips – vocals (track 6)
- The Runners – hand claps (track 1)
- Little Richard – piano, vocals (track 8)
- Brian Scheuble – engineer
- Alan Silvestri – arranger
- Benmont Tench – Hammond organ (tracks 1-3, 5-7, 9-10), piano (tracks 5, 8)
- Waddy Wachtel – guitar (track 9), slide guitar (track 8), dobro (track 3)
- JD Dworkow – Co-Operation
- Ron Jacobs – Sound Engineer
- Brian Scheuble – Sound Engineers