Maybe I haven’t been paying enough attention or maybe this is a bold step for Jersey artist Jon Bon Jovi. He released a new single a few days ago called "American Reckoning." It doesn’t take a deep analysis of the lyrics to figure out he’s not only singing about what happened to George Floyd in Minneapolis but also where he stands on the issue.

America's on fire
There's protests in the street
Her conscience has been looted
And her soul is under siege
Another mother's crying
As history repeats
I can't breathe

God damn those eight long minutes
Lying face-down in cuffs on the ground
Bystanders pleaded for mercy
As one cop shoved a kid in the crowd
When did a judge and a jury
Become a badge and a knee
On these streets?

Would it be too obvious or too out of line to make the comparison to Bruce Springsteen? I’m not saying Bon Jovi isn’t his own man or his own talent. I mean the comparison in a complimentary way. These words while maybe not lyrically perfect are raw and important.

He even admits to some white privilege with the lines...

I'll never know what it's like
To walk a mile in his shoes
And I'll never have to have the talk
So it don't happen to you

In a statement on Jon said, “I was moved to write American Reckoning as a witness to history. I believe the greatest gift of an artist is the ability to use their voice to speak to issues that move us.”

I certainly shouldn’t be that surprised at such a serious song coming from Bon Jovi on this subject. After all BLACK LIVES MATTER is painted on the sidewalk in front of his charitable Soul Kitchen restaurant in Red Bank.

An album titled Bon Jovi 2020 was due out on May 15 but the project got pushed back because of the coronavirus pandemic. In fact a world tour was planned around it, but when Jon heard people who bought tickets would only get their much needed money back if the shows were officially canceled and not just postponed, being the gracious guy he is he canceled them.

Now the new single American Reckoning is being added to that upcoming album. If you haven’t heard it, check out the music video.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski. Any opinions expressed are Jeff Deminski's own.

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