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Need Help Reaching George Lucas? Just Ask Jon Bon Jovi!

Maximum Performance

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Multiplatinum rockers Bon Jovi are gearing up to play the iHeartRadio music festival in Las Vegas this month, but that's not all the guys in the band have been up to lately. In addition to working on music for their next album (release date to be announced), they've also been helping some of their buddies hammer out new tunes as well. In fact, they assisted one particular duo in a way that even the most hardcore of fans would not be able to expect!

How's that? Well, Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora are friends with Nashville upstarts Big & Rich (yup, Rich as in John Rich, who won Celebrity Apprentice last year). Having worked with the pair a few years ago on a songwriting project, B&R's Big Kenny called up JBJ and Sambora to see if they'd like to help out on Big & Rich's upcoming album, which will be released September 18.

Kenny told Detroit's 99.5 WYCD that the Bon Jovi guys were "incredibly excited" to collaborate, and that they all met up in New York to get to work. While hard at work recording, Jon Bon Jovi made a comment that would prove to be integral to the project.

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Bon Jovi and Sambora (Photo: Robert Marquardt)

"One of the songs has the line 'Hillbilly Jedis with attitude,'" John Rich told 99.5. "Jon Bon looked at us and said, 'If there were ever Hillbilly Jedis, it's the two of y'all.'"

Sounds like a joke--but it ended up being the title of Big & Rich's album. However, the title almost never came to be. Big & Rich's record label vetoed the idea, since famed Star Wars director George Lucas owns the rights to the term "jedi" and it was doubtful he'd grant permission for its use.

When Big Kenny broke this disappointing news to Jon Bon Jovi--the star didn't even skip a beat. He whipped out his phone and called Lucas, himself, right then and there. Unbelievable? Well, Lucas apparently couldn't resist JBJ's charms--Big & Rich's new album is now formally titled Hillbilly Jedi.

The director's one stipulation was the use of "jedi" rather than "jedis"--because, as he admonished, the term "jedi" is both singular and plural. "If they are going to use the word, use it correctly."

Bon Jovi, Mary J. Blige, Aerosmith, Taylor Swift and seven other superstar artists will perform at the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas on Saturday, September 22. Green Day, Lil Wayne, Rihanna and Miranda Lambert are among the acts playing Friday, September 21, the event's opening night. The shows begin at 7 p.m. PST and will be streamed exclusively on Yahoo! Music. https://music.yahoo.com/programs/iheart/

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