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Jon Bon Jovi Is Still Pretty Embarrassed by Bon Jovi’s ‘Runaway’ Video

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Tight pants, big hair, and dry ice were all over MTV in the ’80s, and Bon Jovi‘s video for the band’s first big single, 1984’s ‘Runaway,’ is no exception.

Knowing he was in some pretty good company when it came to the clip’s silly visuals doesn’t really soothe the lingering embarrassment for frontman Jon Bon Jovi, however. Looking back at the video during a recent conversation with Billboard, he couldn’t help but laugh, referring to it as “absolutely awful” and adding, “We had no input as to what it would be about or who would be in it. They had people give us clothes to wear; we were just dumbfounded. Fortunately, the song had some roots, so we were saved.”

Those roots reached all the way to No. 39 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart, giving Bon Jovi their first Top 40 hit — and an experience that remains one of his personal milestones. “I used to dream about the day when Casey Kasem would talk about [us] on ‘American Top 40,'” he recalled. “And there it was, on Sunday morning, hearing that voice, ‘No. 39, a brand-new band from New Jersey.’ I was just so happy.”

Three decades later, Bon Jovi remain one of rock’s most dependable sellers, both on the charts and on the road, with an international audience that allows them to continue touring the world. According to Jon, the band’s global success is the result of heeding early advice from manager Doc McGhee. “Right from record one, he said, ‘You have to go anywhere where there is electricity, and if they don’t have electricity, we’ll bring our own,'” said Bon Jovi. “That was one of his adages. We went 

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