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May 04, 2004

Dr Sambora

Honorary Degree Recipient:
Richie Sambora
Lead Guitar/Songwriter, rock group Bon Jovi
Doctor of Humane Letters

Richie is getting an honorary degree from his old college, Kean University, this Thurday May 6th.
Kean University Undergraduate Commencement

Undergraduate Commencement

Honorary Degree Recipient:
Richie Samboraients

Lead Guitar/Songwriter, rock group Bon Jovi

Doctor of Humane Letters

Richie Sambora began his love affair with the guitar in his parents’ Woodbridge, N.J., home as a young boy, playing along to the recordings of such rock icons as Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Jimi Hendrix. Before long, he managed to parlay his passion into a chart-topping career and today is the lead guitarist and songwriter for the internationally beloved hard-rock band Bon Jovi. Sambora will be honored at Kean University’s 149th Undergraduate Commencement exercises on Thursday, May 6, when he is awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters (L.H.D.) in recognition of his contributions to the arts.

Encouraged from a young age by his entertainer parents to take up music, the multitalented Sambora learned to play a variety of instruments, but turned his attention toward the guitar soon after hearing blues-rock legend Eric Clapton for the first time.

Following his graduation from Woodbridge High School, Sambora briefly attended Kean University before leaving to pursue his musical career. He played in a number of local bands, touring the regional circuit, and briefly served as the lead guitarist for Joe Cocker’s band. One of Sambora’s early groups, Message, was signed to Swan Song, a label begun by Led Zeppelin and distributed through Atlantic Records.

In 1983, Sambora met Jon Bon Jovi, lead singer of a fledgling group that bore his last name, and within weeks, became a member of Bon Jovi. The band was signed to Mercury Records shortly thereafter.

Since then, more than 100 million Bon Jovi albums have been sold throughout the world. Sambora has co-written four No. 1 hit singles, 20 top-10 singles and nearly 40 top-40 songs, including Wanted Dead or Alive, Livin’ on a Prayer, I’ll Be There for You, Bed of Roses, and It’s My Life.

A band proud of its New Jersey roots, Bon Jovi was at the forefront of the entertainment community’s efforts to aid the families affected by the September 11 terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center. Shortly after the tragedies, Bon Jovi participated at two concerts for the Monmouth County Alliance of Neighbors in Red Bank, N.J., to raise funds for the families close to the band members’ hometowns. Bon Jovi also performed at the monumental Concert for New York at Madison Square Garden, raising relief funds and honoring those who worked to save lives immediately following the disaster.

Sambora has recorded a pair of solo albums as well. In 1991, he released Stranger in This Town on Jambco Records, while his most recent, Undiscovered Soul, was released by Mercury in 1998. Sambora and his wife, actress Heather Locklear, were married in 1994 and are the proud parents of a daughter, Ava Elizabeth.

Posted by riesambo at May 4, 2004 04:21 PM