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January 19, 2008

Rehab brats 'giving rock a bad name'

RICHIE Sambora reckons the current crop of performers are giving rock a bad name. The Australian.jpg

Bon Jovi's lead guitarist, who co-wrote 1980s anthems Livin' on a Prayer, Bad Medicine and Wanted: Dead or Alive, says it took him 30 years to succumb to the "pitfalls" of stardom.

"I had a long time to have fun before it got to me," Sambora told The Weekend Australian in Melbourne yesterday ahead of tonight's concert at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl, which will kick off the band's national tour. "It took me 30 years to get into rehab."

The guitarist, who along with lead singer Jon Bon Jovi also wrote You Give Love a Bad Name, said it was tougher for young performers, such as the troubled Britney Spears, as they did not have the support of bandmates.

"When you're a singer like Britney Spears or you're an actor or an actress, you're basically out there for yourself," he said. "Bon Jovi's a gang of five, so we're able to look after each other."

Sambora, who checked into rehabilitation for drinking problems last year following his divorce from actor Heather Locklear, said he had wanted to draw on his former experiences and setbacks to colour Bon Jovi's latest album, Lost Highway, a worldwide hit and the band's first to debut at No1 in the US.

"If you're writing, it's impossible not to have your life experience actually come through a little bit in what you're writing about," Sambora said.

Unlike some of Bon Jovi's previous nine albums, the latest "experimentation", which has sold more than three million copies, has been embraced by old fans and chipped into the lucrative country music genre with its Nashville flavour.

Sambora said Bon Jovi's success -- the band has sold more than 120 million records in 25 years and performed at more than 2500 concerts worldwide -- is a tribute to its ability to touch fans. "The reason why Bon Jovi is still around today is because we write songs that people can relate to," he said.

Sambora, who has a three-year-old daughter with Locklear, said he very much enjoyed being a father and was on the lookout for a partner interested in having children.

"I'm actually looking for a new recipient to have more children," he said. "I'd love to find another woman to have more children with.

"Hey, I'm waiting, c'mon, put in your resume. I'm on the hunt, man, you know."

Bon Jovi will play at Sydney's Acer Arena on Monday and Tuesday nights and at Perth's Subiaco Oval on Friday.

Posted by riesambo at January 19, 2008 10:58 AM