Spain was one of the worst-hit nations in Europe in the aftermath of the 2008 financial meltdown. It’s still suffering high inflation, high unemployment and low growth, with latest estimates suggesting the country hasn’t yet emerged from recession.
The idea of the band working for nothing came from frontman Jon Bon Jovi himself.
He tells El Mundo: “When we were planning the tour we did a study and found that, due to the economic situation, Spain was not on the road map.
“But we didn’t want to stop playing to the fans of a country that’s treated me so well for 30 years.”
As a result of the gesture, tickets for the show in Madrid on June 27 were sold for as little as £15, with the income covering the costs of staging, crew and venue staff. That compares to £65 for a standard ticket to the band’s show in Manchester next week. Madrid tickets have sold out.
Bon Jovi are on the road without guitarist Richie Sambora, who failed to appear for the current leg of their world tour. Neither Bon Jovi nor Sambora have explained the reason behind his absence, although the singer recently admitted he was finding it difficult not to discuss the situation. That led to retaliation from his bandmate.
The guitarist dropped off the latest leg of Bon Jovi’s world tour just hours before it was supposed to kick off in Calgary. He was replaced by Phil X, who also stood in during Sambora’s visit to rehab in 2011.
Yesterday singer Jon suggested substance issues were behind his bandmate’s latest absence, and added that he was struggling to keep his mouth shut.
But now Sambora claims he’s said too much already. He tells the Daily Mail: “My opinion is Jon wants to see if he can pull off stadiums by himself. He’s making it very difficult for me to come back.
“Enough with the trash-talking – Jon needs to stop talking about me publicly. I am fine, working very hard on my fashion company, and this is a private matter. I don’t have any major problems in my life right now.”
He adds that his thoughts are with followers of the band, saying: “I love my fans and I feel bad from them at the moment. They’ve paid money to see Bon Jovi, and, right now, they’re not getting the whole deal.”
Sambora recently tweeted: “Hey there’s too much to say right now so I won’t say anything. Love you all. Thank u for the support. Just don’t worry… everything’s good.”