Bon Jovi on Sambora: ‘He didn’t show up... we never saw him again’

Bon Jovi with Richie Sambora
Sambora, 2nd right, with Bon Jovi before the split (Image credit: Getty)

Jon Bon Jovi says the only contact he’s had in three years with Richie Sambora has been via social media.

The guitarist left the band at short notice in 2013, although the frontman has since said there’s no bad feeling between them.

But the episode kicked off a period of Bon Jovi’s life that he says has been so dark that he can’t begin to describe it.

He tells the Mirror: “Everything was great and we were just coming off a break – but he never came back to work. It was a shock.

“There was never a fight. There was never an argument. It certainly wasn’t about money.

“He has since reached out on social media, which was very kind. But we never saw him again. Nobody.”

The band continued with Phil X in Sambora’s place, but Bon Jovi began to encounter business and personal problems, including severe disagreements with his record label.

The singer says: “I’m not ready to share it in full – but it was not pretty. A lot of things added up and a snowflake became an avalanche. Those three years were tumultuous. This is the first day of the light at the end of the tunnel.”

And he credits his wife Dorothea with keeping him going during the hard times. “She is very wise,” he says. “She have me four great kids and I didn’t fuck up. I did it right the first time.”

The band will release latest album This House Is Not For Sale on November 4. Sambora recently congratulated his former colleagues on the release of the title track.

Bon Jovi listening parties

Oct 17: Toronto Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Canada
Oct 20: New York Barrymore Theatre

Bon Jovi US tour 2017

Feb 08: Greenville Bon Secours Wellness Arena SC
Feb 10: Atlanta Philips Arena, GA
Feb 12: Sunrise BB&T Center, FL
Feb 14: Tampa Amalie Arena, FL
Feb 16: Birmingham BJCC, AL
Feb 18: Nashville Bridgestone Arena, TN
Feb 19: St. Louis Scottrade Center, MO
Feb 21: Oklahoma City Chesapeake Energy Center, OK
Feb 23: Dallas American Airlines Center, TX
Feb 25-:Las Vegas T-Mobile Arena, NV
Feb 28: Sacramento Golden 1 Center, CA
Mar 01: San Jose SAP Center, CA
Mar 04: Phoenix Talking Stick Resort Arena, AZ
Mar 05: San Diego Viejas Arena, CA
Mar 08: Los Angeles The Forum, CA
Mar 14: Denver Pepsi Center, CA
Mar 16: Memphis FedExForum, TN
Mar 18: Columbus Nationwide Arena, OH
Mar 19: Cleveland Quicken Loans Arena, OH
Mar 22: Indianapolis Bankers Life Fieldhouse, IN

Bon Jovi: This House Is Not For Sale tracklist

  1. This House Is Not For Sale
  2. Living With The Ghost
  3. Knockout
  4. Labor Of Love
  5. Born Again Tomorrow
  6. Roller Coaster
  7. New Year’s Day
  8. The Devil’s In The Temple
  9. Scars On This Guitar
  10. God Bless This Mess
  11. Reunion
  12. Come On Up To Our House
  13. Real Love
  14. All Hail The King
  15. We Don’t Run
  16. I Will Drive You Hime
  17. Goodnight New York

Richie Sambora: I’m not just Bon Jovi’s sideman

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Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band, a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.