Tour Statistic & Summary


Tourname: These Days Tour

Legs: 2

Shows: 31

Canceled: -


After a break of 5 months, the band were set to prolong their tour for the These Days album in May of 1996. That scenario had undergone some changes along the way.

Originally, since the band still had to tour many legs on the back of Cross Road due to the album’s delayed release, the plan had been to continue in the important markets right away in early ’96. But then a few things changed: Jon got offered a main role in the Leading Man, with the director assuring him to postpone the filming until the tour was done. So, a gap was put in after 1995 to allow Jon to go to London for the shooting. Then, the band going through their roughest period in their home country in ’95 in terms of them hardly even selling out amphitheaters across the country lead to Jon not wanting to return to the States with their tour in 1996. Furthermore, probably also due to the disappointments in the US, early reports stated that the ’96 tour was to be held in arenas across Europe since the band just wanted to play and the album’s tone was more set for intimate surroundings in their mind.


However, contrary to the US, the band was at their peak of fame in Europe, especially in Germany and the UK and the plan was scrapped as the ticket requests shot through the roof. They returned to stadiums and big open air fields and, in fact, could’ve even added and sold out probably 15 more shows across Europe, but the band insisted on just doing what had been planned since they were just keen on playing and having fun without too much stress.


So, after all these changes, the tour kicked off in Fukuoka in mid-May and it became obvious that the band was there to experiment and just have a good time. A big amount of album cuts was added right away and Something To Believe In, My Guitar Lies Bleeding In My Arms and All I Want Is Everything premiered the first night. The latter actually marked the only time the band played a bonus track regularly on tour. Furthermore, the band even added an acoustic set to their shows where they all went down to a smaller platform upfront and would perform three songs for the crowd there.

Usually, this triplet was to be Wanted Dead Or Alive, a completely reworked rendition of I’d Die For You and In These Arms. As the tour progressed through Europe, especially I’d Die For You was often to be swapped for either I’ll Be There For You or spontaneous requests like Never Say Goodbye or Lie To Me. For the opening of their shows, they would hire a local marching band that was set to “play” Lay Your Hands On Me before slowly walking off the stage and having the band kick into the song simultaneously. While it surely was a great show, the sound of the big band had been pre-recorded and was simply played over the PA since it would’ve proven impossible to mix them properly for two minutes of lead-in action anyway.


During this leg, the 2nd of the band’s three nights in Yokohama was broadcasted live on television. Many fans regard this as the absolute best of Bon Jovi and, while it certainly was great in comparison to what was to come after that tour, the band actually had caught an off-night there. The real pinnacle of the Asian leg was to follow on the final night in Yokohama where they pulled out all plugs and played a setlist that would make any diehard fall on their knees these days, including Dry County, The Boys Are Back In Town, Wild Is The Wind and a final encore consisting of Never Say Goodbye, Something To Believe In and Hey God.


After a break of two weeks, the band entered Europe with three shows in Spain. Whereas the start had gone pretty much wrong with Jon being sick and them having to shorten the Madrid concert to 18 songs because of that, the band returned to their all-time greatest form from the second show onwards. Even though the main set structure was mostly the same with changes only done on two neuralgic spots throughout, the encores were a box of surprises most of the time and, at times, would culminate up to three or four rounds. With the exception of two or three occasions, shows rarely fell under the 150/160 minute mark and some even edged close to three hours. From Frankfurt onwards, a “B structure” of the set was applied on selected nights that had them open with a cover song, change the running order of the first half of the main set significantly and then bringing the marching band on after the acoustic set.


Although the level was generally very high that year, some shows even stood out from the rest back then: In Frankfurt, the band fired in 30 songs while Germany won the European football Cup that night, including the tour’s only electric rendition of Wanted and the only appearance of Blood Money. In Dublin, the band was in full-gear These Days form, playing no less than 11 tracks off the album and hence performing all songs that have ever been played live off that record. Whereas Gijon, Landgraaf, Zurich and Cologne are also all worth mentioning simply for the unbelievable energy of crowd and band, it was the ending of the tour that pretty much topped it all. In Nuernberg, the band did their 32nd and final German show within three years in that country and not only added rarities like Wild Is The Wind or Never Say Goodbye to the main set, but ended with a special encore where Jon thanked the fans for everything, the band then playing a spine-chilling rendition of (It’s Hard) Letting You Go before disappearing for a break of unknown length. Had this been close to being the icing on the cake, they even topped that one at the tour’s finale in Helsinki: There, Richie, Dave and Tico all were given the chance to sing lead vocals on a song, the band played an intense show with an emotional speech before / rendition of These Days and then Letting You Go, only to top the night off with the acoustic rendition of I’d Die For You as the last song.


Looking back at it, fans regard the 1995/96 tours as the pinnacle of Bon Jovi and it pretty much was. Even though Jon had picked up the bad habit of constantly smoking during the filming of Leading Man earlier that year and his voice having gotten noticeably thinner because of that, he was still able to hit the high notes and the shows were just a driving force. Yes, in between 2008 and 2013, some concerts added up to the same length/amount of songs, but the sheer quality of material back in the mid-90’s edged it all out by a landslide. The band’s playing was as refined as it could get and it pretty much got obvious on a nightly basis that the banded had an absolute desire and joy to play material they absolutely believed in. What a summer it must’ve been for anyone who was around to see a show back then!


Song statistic


The setlist from 29 of 31 shows are known. So all the following statements refer to those 29 shows. If a song got played 100 % it means it got played during every of those known 29 shows.


The  shows had songs from 8 different albums (incuding Jon's solo album Blaze Of Glory and Richie Sambora's solo album Stranger In This Town).


Only 7800° Fahrenheit has been completely ignored.


Livin' On A Prayer, You Give Love A Bad Name, Wanted Dead Or Alive, Lay Your Hands On Me, Bad Medicine, Blood On Blood, In These Arms (acoustic), I'll Sleep When I'm Dead, Keep The Faith and Something For The Pain were played at every show.

Runaway, Someday I'll Be Saturday Night (28 appearances), Always, Hey God, All I Want Is Everything, These Days (all 27), Something To Believe In (25) and Rockin' All Over The World (20) were setlist staples as well.


The rare (Bon Jovi) songs of the tour were Blood Money (1), Wild Is The Wind, Dry County, Never Say Goodbye (all 3) and I Believe (4).

While Wanted Dead Or Alive (100 %) and I'd Die For You (68 %) were regulars in their acoustic renditions, the electric version of both songs only got played once.


Remarkable was that with This Ain't A Lovesong the album's lead single only got played  at 30 % of the shows, making it the first lead single to be dropped regularly. In fact, after this tour it took 12 years until the band would play the song again.

The same fate happened to a lot of These Days tracks:

- Lie To Me (2008)

- Hey God (2001, after that reappeared in 2008)

- (It's Hard) Letting You Go (2000, after that in 2010)

- Something For The Pain (once in 2001, after that in 2010)

- All I Want Is Everything and My Guitar Lies Bleeding In My Arms were never again played live.


If That's What It Takes, Hearts Breaken Even and Bitter Wine are the only songs off the album that were never done live at all.


(Click on the images to enlarge them)