Jon Bon Jovi Now Justifies Richie Sambora’s Departure: ‘He Had Issues’

In a recent chat with ET’s Nischelle Turner at the iHeart Studios in Los Angeles, Jon Bon Jovi discussed Richie Sambora’s departure from Bon Jovi.

The singer detailed the background of the guitarist’s 2013 exit from the band:

“There was never a fight. It was never about money; it was never about a girlfriend. He had issues… and he literally didn’t show up. We were playing for 20,000 people, and there’s a black hole on the stage.”

Bon Jovi Knew Sambora Had Issues To Deal With

Jon understood what Sambora had been going through, as he added:

“Substance abuse or anxieties or single parenting, all those things weighed on him, losing his dad. These were all very hard things. But in fairness, why would I take away the livelihoods of not only the band, but the 120 guys in the crew? Or the millions of people that bought a ticket? What am I going to do? Shut it down because you don’t want to go to rehab?”

The frontman also revealed that he and Sambora watched the start of the new limited series, ‘Thank You, Goodnight: The Bon Jovi Story’ together. Bon Jovi heard Sambora apologize on screen for leaving, and it helped their relationship heal over time. Jon knows that Richie’s choices weren’t made out of animosity.

Sambora Is Not Happy With How He Departed

In the trailer of the documentary, the guitarist talks about his departure, saying:

“I don’t regret leaving, but I regret how I did it… I went out of here, and what I meant was out of Bon Jovi.”

Sambora also told the following in the trailer:

“I’m excited. Are we telling the truth, or are we going to lie? What are we going to do?”

Later, speaking to New York’s Q104.3 radio station, Bon Jovi responded to Richie’s words, explaining:

“He told the truth. He told his truth, which, you know, if you really want to get on the psychiatrist couch with all of us, everybody’s truths are going to be shades of what they remember best, and I have no issues with anything that anybody said in the film. There’s nothing but love in the movie. But it’s honest, and it’s a reflection of who and what we are as boys who turned into men and are still here.”

Jon also previously noted that he and Richie didn’t talk a word during the filming of the documentary. They were in different places while giving the interviews. ‘Thank You, Goodnight: The Bon Jovi Story’ will premiere on April 26 on Hulu and internationally on Disney+.