Bon Jovi fans planning to catch an upcoming show on their Because We Can Tour won’t be seeing guitarist Richie Sambora, at least for the foreseeable future. In an announcement made late Tuesday (April 2nd), the guitarist will be sitting out the current leg of the tour citing “personal issues.”
The band stated “all shows will go on,” and have brought in backup guitarist Phil X to play the remainder of Sambora’s absence. They are offering refunds for ticket holders who refuse to see the group without the famed axeman.
Hours before Tuesday’s announcement and the band’s performance in Calgary, Sambora tweeted he was watching cover videos fans sent for his single “Every Road Leads To Home” from his latest solo effort, Aftermath Of The Lowdown.
Rumors began circulating immediately following the announcement. While we’re not one to feed on gossip, we feel that we need to try to clear up what is being said. TMZ claims it’s been a long-brewing feud with frontman Jon Bon Jovi calling it a classic “Jagger/Richards blowup” over money. However, fans fear for Sambora’s health who has been absent before due to rehab for substance abuse.
Jon’s brother Matthew Bongiovi took to Twitter on Wednesday to clear up the rumors via a slew of tweets (@MatthewBongiovi):
“Unless it comes direct from us don’t listen. People saying according to someone close to the band is SHIT.
All I can say is he is OK. There are personal reasons. I’m sure some can look up the meaning of ‘personal’ reasons.
Ill say one thing the TMZ story is TOTAL SHIT. They are completely off with this one.
Btw Richie NOT leaving the band. They are NOT fighting.
The internal vibe has never been better. All is FINE. just simple personal things Richie has to take care of. Really simple actually.”
“Richie Sambora won’t be performing for a while.”
Sambora himself even tweeted about the rumors on Wednesday (April 3rd).
Calgary Herald reports that an announcement was made over the Saddledome’s public address system on Tuesday night that Sambora would not be performing. They also state that Jon asked the crowd for support.
“I had two choices – pack up and go home or give you everything I got. Richie Sambora won’t be performing for a while. If there’s ever a night I need you, it’s tonight, Calgary,” Jon said.
The band wraps up this leg of the tour in San Jose, CA on April 25th before heading to Africa in early May. No word on when Sambora is expected to return, but he will be absent from his hometown gig of Los Angeles on April 19th. Whatever the issue is, we wish both Sambora and the band the best of luck and hope to see Sambora back on stage with his longtime group real soon.
Stay tuned to The Music Universe for further information as it becomes available.
Author: Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.