After the band earned their first nomination for the honor since 2011, the 58-year-old guitarist told Billboard that he would “of course” play with former songwriting partner Jon Bon Jovi and the rest of the band at the induction ceremony in April.
“There’s not a lot of malice there, you know,” Sambora said. “I mean, there’s just — it was just time for me to leave at that point. So yeah, of course.”
Last year, Bon Jovi’s frontman told PEOPLE that Sambora abruptly left the group during 2013’s Because We Can tour.
“There was no fight or money issues, like the reports say,” Bon Jovi, 55, said. “Nobody expected Richie to quit in the middle of the night for no reason. He wasn’t fired; he just didn’t come to work.”
Despite the split, the musicians don’t have bad blood. Last year, they exchanged kind words on Twitter, with Sambora congratulating the band on their new single while Bon Jovi tweeted that he was couldn’t wait to hear Sambora’s new music.
The guitarist also hasn’t ruled out reuniting with the band one day, telling Billboard, “You never know.”
Even if Bon Jovi falls short this year, Sambora thinks they’ll inevitably be inducted as one of the great rock and roll bands.
“It’s just a matter of time, I imagine,” he said, according to Billboard. “That’s why I wasn’t really focused on it, because I just thought, ‘F—! You know, we sold about 150 million records, so we put a lot of asses in seats and made a lot of people happy through music we made together.’ And I think maybe it’s time for that recognition.”
And he already knows what songs he would want to play at the induction ceremony.
“‘Livin’ on a Prayer’ would have to be one. ‘Prayer’ is a song that has lived through the ages. It’s one of those songs that means more today than when we wrote it. When you’re a songwriter and you hit that note when everybody relates to it, and it becomes a part of humanity, for God’s sake,” he said. “And you know, ‘Wanted Dead or Alive,’ obviously.”