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August 28, 2013
Story and Photo by Scott A. Smith
When bathed in concert spotlights, Journey is a better, more aggressive-sounding band than many people will admit.
It’s true that for years, the band excelled at making ballads an art form, but what much of the public forgets is how Journey can rock as hard as almost anyone else.
A fine example of Journey’s technical prowess and ability to dish up an almost note-perfect set took place at The Joint inside the Tulsa Hard Rock on Aug. 23 in Catoosa, Okla. The group – guitarist Neal Schon, keyboardist Jonathan Cain, bassist Ross Valory, singer Arnel Pineda and drummer Deen Castronovo – thrilled a capacity audience. A white-hot “Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)” boomed throughout the darkened room first, with Pineda and Schon on the visual front line. Pineda’s voice hit the song’s stratospheric notes while Cain’s moody synthesizer and Valory’s punchy bass locked in with Castronovo’s assertive drumming.… Continue reading
February 14, 2012
It’s hard to escape the sound of classic rock these days. Not that I want to. It’s not just us classic rock fans that still have respect for the sound of classic rock, however. We’ve heard various classic rock hits used through the years as soundtracks for television shows (think Sopranos) and for commercial advertising. Although one might expect these classic hits to fade into obscurity in favor of more contemporary sounds, the opposite appears to be true.
A new commercial for State Farm Insurance features Journey’s hit song “Any Way You Want It,” in order to promote the availability of the company when customers need to get in touch with them. Judging from the number of commercials I see on television, the insurance industry appears to be one of the most competitive industries out there. Therefore, one could presume that the big insurance companies are laying out the cash to hire the best ad agencies that money can buy.… Continue reading
November 7, 2011
Spinning up Journey’s Greatest Hits Volume 2 CD for the first time provided for me an experience that was true to the band’s name. Listening to those hits took me on a musical journey back to the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. Although the compilation includes tracks that were recorded between 1978 and 1996, it was those early songs like Stone In Love, Feeling That Way and Just the Same Way that really took me back to those Saturday nights sitting in my 1973 Chevrolet Laguna listening to the radio and hanging out with friends into the wee hours.
Of all the bands we listened to and loved during that time, I don’t feel as if I’m going too far out on a limb when I say that Journey’s share of airtime on rock radio probably outshined just about every other group. It’s not all that often I can put on a greatest hits album packed with seventeen songs and find each and every one of them instantly recognizable.… Continue reading
November 29, 2010
Some might say that the title of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’” track has proved prophetic. 29 years after the track was released, the song has topped the 3 million mark in paid downloads – the first song released prior to 2000 to do so!
Originally released in 1981 from the band’s Escape album, the song was popular but never dominated the top 40 charts.
Proving that music, like fashion, can be cyclical the song has developed a cult following in the 21st Century around the world. It re-entered the top 10 in the UK and achieved record downloads on iTunes (proving that music cds online are not just the domain of young artists!).
What has sparked this revival?
The commercial use of a song, or its inclusion on a soundtrack can be either its kiss of death or a fast track path to fame and success. Luckily for Journey, they fall into the latter category.… Continue reading
July 23, 2008
Currently on the road as part of a triple header classic rock tour, Journey’s new lead singer, Arnel Pineda, is reported to be easing into his new role quite nicely and becoming more comfortable onstage.
Journey keyboard player Jonathan Cain says Pineada has “found a good balance between movement and singing, working the crowd, interaction with the band, that sort of thing. And then also adjusting to up in the air, off the bus, on the bus, in the hotel room, getting sleep, eating healthy, the meet-and-greets–there’s a lot to get used to.”
Cain goes on to say that Pineda has a good set of habits developed already for life on the road and he sees Pineda as “the kind of guy you want.”
By this time it is well known to Journey fans that their new lead vocalist was discovered by Neal Schon while searching for singers on the popular video-sharing website, YouTube.… Continue reading