Jon Bon Jovi after vocal cord surgery: “It was like God was taking my talent”

The singer joked, "The only thing that has entered my nose until today is my finger, so there is no reason for any of this."

3 mins read

Jon Bon Jovi reflects on his return to live performance after “state-of-the-art” vocal cord surgery.

The 61-year-old singer-songwriter, who underwent surgery in 2022, said she fears she may lose the ability to sing live.

“I’m proud of myself for being a real vocalist,” Bon Jovi said.

I sang with Pavarotti. I know how to sing, I’ve studied this craft for 40 years. I’m not just a stylist who barks and howls. I know how to sing. That’s why when God took away my talent I couldn’t understand why. The only thing that has ever gone up my nose is my finger, so I joke that there is no reason for any of this.

Bon Jovi spoke at a panel discussion in Pasadena, California for Thank You, Goodnight, a new Hulu documentary series about him and his band’s rise to fame.

Describing the condition of his vocal cords before the surgery, Bon Jovi said, “One of my vocal cords was literally weakened. Your vocal cords should look parallel. Let’s say they are thumb thick, one of mine was thumb thick and the other was pinky thick. The stronger one was pushing the weaker one aside. My craft was being taken away from me.”

Fortunately, I found a surgeon who was able to do a really state-of-the-art implant to reconstruct the wire. The process is still ongoing, but as I said later in the series, if I could just get my tools back… I can handle the rest of it. I can write you songs. I can perform as well as anybody else, but I need to get my tools back.

I’m 19 and a half months into recovery and on Friday night I sang in public for the first time. Saturday morning I woke up for the first time without multiple voices in my head. It was just me.

Bon Jovi, who performed live with Bruce Springsteen last Friday, was honored as the MusiCares Person of the Year for his musical achievements and philanthropic work.

Thank You, Goodnight, a 4-part documentary series directed by Gotham Chopra (Kobe Bryant’s Muse, Man In The Arena), features personal videos and interviews spanning 40 years, tracing Bon Jovi and his band’s rise to fame.

Talking about how he started songwriting, Bon Jovi joked that he didn’t have the same life experiences as Taylor Swift when he was a young man.

“When I got a record deal at 20, I didn’t have much to write about outside of high school,” said the 61-year-old singer-songwriter.

And I wasn’t breaking up with someone all the time like Taylor [Swift].

Thank You, Goodnight is set to premiere on April 26th in the US on Hulu and internationally on Disney+.


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