More than Survivors – Journey moves forward with latest singer and CD – Music – Music – Urban Tulsa Weekly

While many classic rock bands have slowed down or focused on the past, that’s not the case for Journey, perhaps one of the biggest melodic/AOR (album-oriented rock) acts to emerge from the ’80s. Three and a half decades after originally forming the group in the latter part of 1973, founding guitarist Neal Schon breaks ground with the now iconic act.

Probably the biggest news within the Journey camp since the band last played Tulsa was the departure of Steve Augeri, who had replace Steve Perry in 1998, due to a throat infection. When replacement singer Jeff Scott Soto did not work out on a permanent basis, the group was left without a singer until Schon found Filipino singer Arnel Pineda via YouTube. After flying the young frontman to the U.S. for an audition, it took only a few songs before it was clear that they had found the right man for the job.

The group released its 14th studio album in 2008 and returned to platinum sales status with a new singer, record label and distribution deal with an innovative package that allowed the group to introduce singer Arnel Pineda to the fold without alienating its older fanbase as well.

According to Schon, “The label and management came to us and said Wal-Mart wants you to redo your hits, which struck me as a little weird. It just didn’t sit well. I’m not afraid to do it, because we’ve been playing those songs for years, but I was skeptical and more into the new stuff, so I pushed for a full length record.”

In the end, Journey emerged with Revelation, which turned into a three disc package: one CD with 11 new tracks, a second CD with re-recordings of 11 classic songs and a live DVD recorded in Las Vegas at the Theater for the Performing Arts.

It ultimately proved to be a savvy move, as the group was able to release its new material and show that Pineda is a more than competent replacement for Augeri, sounding perhaps even more like Perry than his predecessor. It’s a template which will be followed by Foreigner with a similar package to be released in Wal-Mart stores before the end of the year.

When discussing the record’s success and how it was released, Schon said, “Anymore, the music industry is in a slump, so when you have any kind of success everyone really takes notice. At first, when management brought us the Wal-Mart deal, I thought it was odd, but then I looked around. Those types of stores… the Wal-Marts and Targets and Best Buys… those are the stores people buy CDs and DVDs in now.”

via More than Survivors – Journey moves forward with latest singer and CD – Music – Music – Urban Tulsa Weekly.


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