Saturday, June 24, 2017

Journey Album Retrospective: "NEXT", Released in February 1977

JOURNEY: Next

Album Cover - Front

Gregg Rolie..........Keyboards, Lead Vocals
Neal Schon...........Electric and Acoustic Guitars, Lead Vocals
Ross Valory...........Bass, Background Vocals
Aynsley Dunbar......Drums, Percussion

Album Cover - Back

Main Release Format..........Vinyl Album (LP)
Label............................Columbia Records

Management and Direction.....Walter “Herbie” Herbert
Produced by Journey for Nightmare Productions, Inc.
Recorded and Mixed at His Master’s Wheels, San Francisco, CA
Recording and Mixing Engineer..........Smiggy
Mastered at Capitol Recording Studios, Hollywood
Mastering Engineer.....Bruce Botnick  (Thank You, Mike Dilbeck)

Art Direction and Photography for Journey.......Bruce Steinberg
Album Design......Bruce Steinberg and Ellie Oberzil
Sleeve Art..........Mansfield



Album Liner - Side One

Release Date............February, 1977
Chart Rating............#100
Number Sold...........-500,000
Certification............None
Catalogue Number.....PC34311
Genre....................Progressive Rock, Jazz Fusion


Album Liner - Side Two

TRACKS:
Number of Tracks........8;

Side 1;
1. Spaceman..............4:00
2. People..................5:20
3. I Would Find You......5:53
4. Here We Are...........4:16

Side 2;
1. Hustler.................3:14
2. Next....................5:26
3. Nickel & Dime.........4:13
4. Karma..................5:08


LINER NOTES;
Special Thanks to everyone at CBS Records and to these special friends:
Gary Jackson (financial direction)
Brian Rohan (attorney-at-peace)
Bruce “One-Stop” Steinberg (overtime)
Ray Arbuckle
Ron Bennett
Carol Bork
Jonathan Coffino
Charley Coplen
Mike Dilbeck
Don Ellis
Sam Hood
Mark Hyman
Bruce Lundvall
Rob Oberman
Frank Shargo
Peter Starr
And to Bill Graham and the FM Productions staff

Extra special thanks to our loyal and dedicated staff:
Gloria “Glo” Calbreath, secretary
Juan “Zopilote” Vallanueva, office manager
Patrick “Bubba” Morrow, road manager
Ken “The Duke” Mednick, lighting designer
Greg “Michelin Man” Schafer, axes & lamps
Chris “Biff” Uryevick, drum roadie
Ed “The Hit Man “Simeone, house engineer

Thank you, Herbie for your oneness, dedication and concern

Journey Fan Club;
Send self-addressed envelope to
P.O. Box 404, San Francisco, California  94101

(John Vallanueva, road manager)

Album Label - Side One

Album Label - Side Two


SINGLES:
Number of Singles 1;
Spaceman / To Play Some Music


Spaceman Promo Single Mono Side

Spaceman Promo Single Stereo Side


Spaceman Single - Side One

Spaceman Single - Side Two

WHEEL IN THE SKY REVIEW:

Album Review
Journey's third album, Next, makes it perfectly clear that these guys would become hugely popular the moment they would streamline their sound. They really were excellent songwriters as well as players. There isn't a weak song on the album. Neal Schon really knew how to infuse everything with exciting guitar solos back when he was still learning how to be a great showman.


As Journey was shifting to a more of a pop sound while keeping the roots of Rock and Roll intact over the period of these first three albums, it presents itself pretty clearly here that they have what it takes to make it big. The sound on this album is still dense and earthy while making the shift to a more pop sound, although Rolie’s vocals tend to be a bit more rough and soulful than what Journey would become on their next album.

I do love “Spaceman.” It is the first of many Journey power ballads, even if it's obvious they took a lot of hints from “Rocket Man.” Also, the melody is gorgeous as the album opener. The follow-up songs start to actually seem like a classic Journey songs, as they sport a tighter, more streamlined sound. The only thing missing here are the flamboyant vocals. The album does create a quite compelling atmosphere.

There isn’t a song over 6 minutes on this album while they average about 4-5 minutes. This album is four minutes shorter than Look Into The Future. That was precious time that could have been used to extend the album's terrific closer, the dark and powerful “Karma.” ...Come on! Doesn't a song like that need an extended jam session? I'm not even a jam guy, but considering how entertaining it has been hearing Schon and Rolie go at it in the previous Journey albums, why not bring it here?

Gregg Rolie’s vocals, as great as they are, do call for something more. If only Journey was able to bring that perfect voice to offset Gregg’s powerful voice, the possibilities seem endless. Although this album might not thrill me like Journey's previous ones did, it's still nonetheless among the group's finer releases. 

The cover art front and back are full color pictures of the band, the inner sleeve does contain the first incarnation of some feathered wings artwork, but it’s bitmapped black and white.


Spaceman (A Song For Hang Gliders)
Lyrics by Aynsley Dunbar and Gregg Rolie
Music by Gregg Rolie
It's hard for me not to want to compare this directly with the song that opened Look Into the Future, which was a bouncy and fun Supertramp-ish pop tune. This is also a pop tune but a ballad and kind of a good first power ballad that Journey would become famous for.

Actually this song seems to take a lot of obvious hints from Elton John's “Rocket Man.” Somehow that's not at all because of the similar song titles. It's Rolie's vocal performance, which adopts Elton John's mannerisms. (Hear how Rolie songs “Ooh, I'm not a spaceman, no, no.” I mean, the instrumental textures are engaging and the melody is gorgeous. What more do you need?

People
Lyrics by Neal Schon and Gregg Rolie
Music by Aynsley Dunbar and Gregg Rolie
This is the closest thing we get to the classic Journey sound in this pre-Steve Perry trilogy. All that's missing is flamboyant lead vocals, as Rolie's vocals here are more or less flat and less involved. It's that smooth and tight atmosphere they create here, really providing a nice texture for the ears to sink into. Midway through the drama picks up where we get that zippy synthesizer solo and probably the most crowd-pleasingly flashy electric guitar solo Schon has ever done so far! I believe this song shows Journey gearing up for their commercially successful days yet to come!

I Would Find You
Lyrics by Neal Schon and Tena Austin
Music by Neal Schon
Lead Vocals by Neal Schon
Here’s a good six minute song. Whereas lengthy songs like that had me positively excited in the previous album, this song isn’t the one to extend that extra 50 seconds. Though I do like that mystical, Middle Eastern-like bendy synthesizer solo that starts this off. After that, all we get is a heavy and very slowly developing filler. Some buzzy and bendy electric guitar chords do lend it a foreboding flavor, and there's a little bit of soloing toward the end that's nice, but it's ultimately a bit boring. Overall a good effort but this would need that perfect voice to supplement what Gregg is trying to do here.

Here We Are
Music and Lyrics by Gregg Rolie
This song starts out with heavy, dreamy, and dreary, pure synthesizer chords. What happened to Gregg’s Hammond organ? The song develops very slowly and really needs a soaring voice to take this song to it’s fullest potential, apart from its very last minute when some momentum finally starts to pick up. Schon is also far too absent throughout this, his electric guitar is kept merely in the background.

Hustler
Lyrics by Aynsley Dunbar
Music by Gregg Rolie
Well this is definitely more like classic early! It starts out right away with some lightning-fast electric guitar licks, before delivering a heavy riff. There are lots of things to listen to here. Though it doesn't quite have that gradual, flawlessly developing momentum that some songs in their previous album had. The riff isn't really that catchy, but this thing is littered with Neal's show-offey electric guitar licks, which is pretty cool.

Next
Lyrics by Aynsley Dunbar, Gregg Rolie, and Heidi Cogdell
Music by Neal Schon and Gregg Rolie
There are power-chords. Is this album leading into Infinity or what? ...I mean, this song is muddy, gritty, and ugly--making it totally unlike the glistening studio magic of Infinity--but still…I have to say that Gregg spends so much time singing in this and Neal is more reduced to licking away faintly in the background, regrettably, until the final minute when the groove gets quicker and heavier, and Neal starts going to town. The vocal melody is pretty good, Gregg does a great job with the vocals. Quite good as a whole, but was elevated tremendously in the live shows when Steve Perry added his voice to the song. If the album had a second single, this might have been it!

Nickel and Dime
Music by George Tickner, Ross Valory, Neal Schon and Gregg Rolie
An excellent instrumental! It's a backdrop to so many Journey documentaries. The song gives Neal and Gregg the excuse to noodle around exclusively throughout this. Gregg is using a synthesizer here instead of the Hammond organ he would have used in the previous two albums. Unlike the previous albums they're playing a bit flashy here, as opposed to a bluesy sound. They had proven to be excellent blues soloists in the past. This is an excellent instrumental which would be the last for a few years coming.

Karma
Lyrics by Aynsley Dunbar
Music by Neal Schon and Gregg Rolie
Lead Vocals by Neal Schon
This is an appropriate send-off to pre-Perry Journey if there ever was one, and these kind of jams will be missed. Neal Schon takes lead vocals on this one and kills it! This is the roughest, muddiest, grittiest, and heaviest Journey song of all time. Just listen to this song and try to refrain from bobbing your head righteously to it. This riff is very catchy. Well, this is Journey, after all. This song really called for 9 minutes of blistering jamming! But all they give us is 5!


Thursday, June 22, 2017

Journey Classic Rock Band Poster printed on not ordinary paper, Looks Extraordinary!

I found this Ad for an extraordinary Journey Poster on Amazon.com.

You don't want to miss out on this one, as you can see it's the entire band on a vivid color 24X36 inch, or millimeter, or feet, or whatever Journey poster! This poster of Journey is not counterfeit or made from cheap material, in fact the quality is so good that it's not even printed on real paper.

Journey's line-up has changed over the years, so it's anyone's guess as to who is who in this poster. Hurry and get yours now, before they take this down off Amazon.



Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Journey Force Fan Club Newsletter from January 1988 part IV; Force News

This week we end the Journey Force Newsletter from January 1988. This includes the Pen Pals and Merchandise pages. The tuxedo still looks great to me!

The Big Force news this edition is that they are changing the way they are numbering the Journey Force editions. Due to space limitations (or not wanting to add another page) they are holding off on announcing the winners of the Questionnaire from last edition...



Tuesday, June 13, 2017

The Journey Force Fan Club Newsletter from January 1988 part III; A Concert For Randy

On January 28, 1988 at The Warfield Theater in San Francisco Jonathan Cain, Neal Schon, Randy Jackson, Eddie Money, Eric Martin, Sammy Haggar, Night Ranger, Greg Kihn, Y&T, Denny Carmassi, and Jimmy Lyon gather in the Bay Area for a benefit concert for the late Randy Bachman.

Jonathan Cain dedicated his song "Working Class Man" at the event.

There was also another all star jam session in the Bay Area in the "Football & Rock" section...




Continued Next Week...

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

The Journey Force Fan Club Newsletter from January 1988 part II: Dock Of The Bay

This week, the Newsletter from January 1988, starts off with an Archives Giveaway! The prizes included a cassette of Journey's "Oh Holy Night", from Neal and Jonathan. Also there was the album "A Candid Conversation", and A HASA T-Shirt.

Some members questions are also answered including an interesting piece on a TV Special that used Journey Audiences for other bands and never really showed Journey at all. I wouldn't even think that would be legal.

One cold day in December in 1987 near dusk, as the fog rolls in, Members of Journey can be seen on the beach in San Francisco. Pictures of Neal Schon, Jonathan Cain, and Randy Jackson while working on Michael Bolton's "Dock Of The Bay" Music Video fill in the last page this week.




Continued Next Week...

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The Journey Force Fan Club Newsletter from January 1988 has Honest Passion from Steve Perry

Steve Perry talks openly about Journey, the fans, solo porojects and his honest passion;

Volume 3 Number 1 begins with a great interview of Steve Perry. Steve talks about many things that's going on in his life. Steve even flies Helicopters. 

The second and last page included this week finishes off the interview. In the "New Frontiers" section, we hear about Neal's latest solo album along with some other "Bits & Pieces".




Continued next week...

Monday, May 8, 2017

Wheel In The Sky will be back Mid-May with updates about Journey

I had just moved to a new school in a new city, Woodland Hills. This shy and socially awkward kid was walking home from school when this really cool long-haired kid on a bike rode over to me. I can't remember what happened next. I don't know if he came over to my house, or if I went to his or what. What did happen was a lifetime of friendship and memories.

He got me through Jr. High and High School which I couldn't do alone. I would have been swallowed up without him defending me and giving me credibility. He has always been there for me, always, every time, no matter what.

When everyone else was idolizing comic book characters and things, Scott was my hero. I wanted to be him. He had all the friends, all the girls, he had it all. I named him "Maguire" which was my superhero. He always landed on his feet no matter what. He was the luckiest coolest guy I knew. He outran the Police. He did 360's through red lights. Man, there was nobody cooler than Scott!

Scott is on the right with the big smile. This was taken around 1979.

I can't imagine what lies ahead without you Scott, You are truly missed. My heart is broken and I am once again lost.

.

Although Scott wasn't a Journey fan, his favorite Journey song was "Just The Same Way"


 "Just The Same Way"

Yesterday was a good day
It's after midnight
And I've got you on my mind
Come with me,  never go away
Everyday we will find,  yea

That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
Just the same way you love me
Just the same way she loves

Take a chance now,  the timing's right
You bring to me the key to my life
Stay with me,  won't you stay the night
In the mornin' feelin' fine,  yea

That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
Just the same way you love me
Just the same way she loves

Oh no,  you should be holdin' on to him girl
Oh yea,  just like,  just like you want to do
Oh no,  just love him,  squeeze him,  girl
Oh yea,  just love him,  squeeze him,  yea

That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
Just the same way you love me
Just the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves

-- G.  Rolie,  N. Schon,  R. Valory --

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Wheel In The Sky is taking a break until April

Due to a huge personal loss and crisis, WHEEL IN THE SKY blog is taking a break and will return sometime in April.


 "Just The Same Way"


Yesterday was a good day
It's after midnight
And I've got you on my mind
Come with me,  never go away
Everyday we will find,  yea

That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
Just the same way you love me
Just the same way she loves

Take a chance now,  the timing's right
You bring to me the key to my life
Stay with me,  won't you stay the night
In the mornin' feelin' fine,  yea

That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
Just the same way you love me
Just the same way she loves

Oh no,  you should be holdin' on to him girl
Oh yea,  just like,  just like you want to do
Oh no,  just love him,  squeeze him,  girl
Oh yea,  just love him,  squeeze him,  yea

That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
Just the same way you love me
Just the same way she loves you
Ooh,  just the same way you do
Just the same way you do
That's the same way you love me
That's the same way she loves

-- G.  Rolie,  N. Schon,  R. Valory --


Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Journey Force Newsletter from November 1987 part IV - Conclusion

This weeks edition of The Journey Force Newsletter dated November 1987 is all about Bits and Pieces. We begin with the Pen Pals section which is was the only way Journey fans could find each other beside going to a show.

My favorite part this week is That Rolling Stone Magazine voted "Raised On Radio" number in the top pop/rock/soul category. Really, of all time albums ever, even in 1987 seems to me a bit shocking that of all the Journey albums, "Raised On Radio" is the 4th on a list of top 10 albums of all time.

Ted nugget says that Neal Schon has in fact come close to reversing the axis of the Earth in doing such brilliant Guitar solos. That I do believe! Neal has been one of the best Guitar Players of all time almost all his life.

In other news of the day, Steve Perry's song, "Happy To Give" makes it onto the soundtrack to the surf film, "North Shore".



Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Journey Force Newsletter from November 1987 part III - Softball

This week's edition of the Journey Force Newsletter from November 1987 is all about Softball.

The Bay Area Music and Sports notables take time to participate in the second annual SDwight Clark Celebrity Softball Game.

There's a great picture of Jonathan Cain and Gregg Rolie together in here!

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Journey's Eclipsed - The Popularity of a Band and their Eclipse

Just recently I was at my local Walmart in Porter ranch California and came across the CD section and found where all the "Eclipse" albums went. Here's a very sad picture the Journey section...


I always thought this album sold well, they did a great marketing job and had a special vinyl edition that sold out. I didn't really care for the album and couldn't figure out who was buying it. It looks like Walmart has all of them. Here's another picture at the Van Nuys, California store. The staff decided to dedicate the entire A-M sections to hold their collection of the "Eclipse" album.


Obviously Journey's popularity has dwindled a bit since the Steve Perry days. I'm not even sure they play any new music at their shows. "Eclipse was released in 2011 and Journey hasn't released a new song since. Maybe the thinking is why bother putting out new music if nobody will buy it and it just sits on the shelves. Maybe if we got serious and wrote some more great songs in the old style. The album "Revolution" was a huge hit because it had good music in their old style. It even had sub-standard versions of their old hits re-recorded with Arnel Pineta's voice on a separate CD, along with a DVD of one of Arnel's first shows with Journey. It didn't need any of the extra stuff, it was a solid album. Then they followed up with this. A shame really.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Journey Force Newsletter from November 1987 part II - Neal Schon's Wedding

This week in The Journey Force Newsletter from November 1987 is a whole page dedicated to Neal Schon's Wedding to Beth Buckley on September 20th, 1987.

There is also a picture of Neal and Beth with Randy Jackson with his wife, Liz.

The highlight I'm sure for these brides maids was when Steve Perry sang "Let It Be Me" for the happy couple...


Continued Next Week...

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Journey Force Newsletter from November 1987 part 1 - The Legend Of Cy Klopps

This week's edition of the Journey Force Newsletter from November 1987 begins with a great interview of Jonathan Cain from by The Journey Force titled "Jonathan Cain Captured".

The next big article of this edition of the Newsletter is "The Legend Of Cy Klopps", A Herbie Herbert Persona.

The Journey Force includes a questionnaire for all members of The Journey Force. Also The Force answers some members questions as well as listing all 5 singles released off the "Raised On Radio" album in order of release.




Continued next week...

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

The Journey Force Newsletter, July 1987, Part 4, Pen pals and Questions

The Pen Pals section starts off this weeks edition of The Journey Force Newsletter, July 1987.

These are addresses from 1987 and please do not send any letters to these people who probably don't live there anymore.

Your Questions Answered appears on this page as well.

Back Issues for sale! Back issues of The Journey Force Newsletter on sale for $1.00 each!

The Merchandise page follows which shows all the "Raised On Radio" items for sale back inn 1987.



Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Journey Force Newsletter, July 1987, Part 3, Pictures!

This week's part of the Journey Force Newsletter from July 1978 is the next two pages which are full of color pictures of the members of the band.

The Tenth Annual Bay Area Music Awards (Bammie's) where Journey tore it up! Here are the winners;

Steve Perry - Outstanding Male Vocalist  (his fourth)
Neal Schon - Outstanding Guitarist
Jonathan Cain - Outstanding Keyboardist  (his fourth)
Journey - Outstanding Group

Other photos on these pages include Gregg Rolie, Randy Jackson, John Fogerty, Michael Bolton, Bonnie Raitt, and Huey Lewis.



Concluded next week...