Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Journey Force Newsletter dated March 1986 concludes with Merchandise

The Journey Force Newsletter from March and April 1986 concludes this week. The last four pages of the Newsletter are included here. We start with merchandise you can't order, then we move onto Pen Pals who no longer live there, then we look at the merchandise they couldn't get rid of, and finally the blank outer page that the postman messes up. The merchandise would still be worth getting if only they were still made...

The Pen Pal page is always worth lining your birdcage with but this week it has an important message about NEW JOURNEY FORCE CARDS to match the new look of the "Raised On Radio" album! There's also a "Radio" pass contest that you can no longer enter full of Journey trivia....

The next page is the merchandise that wasn't worth printing in color. This is all the "Frontiers" stuff they need to unload before the release of the new "Raised On Radio" album...

Oddly, this next page might actually be someone's favorite. I mean these Newletters are all old news that no-one cares about so the blank page that sometimes has my old addresses might be a favorite...

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Journey - Big Wheel In The Sky - New Album Release with Steve Perry live

On June 10, 2016 a new Journey Album of a live performance recorded for a live radio broadcast on August 9, 1979 was released. This was recorded during the "Evolution Tour". Originally a "Studio Jam" presentation, hosted by Robin Winter, makes for a great album. It's 73 minutes of Journey with Steve Perry and Gregg Rolie. It isn't the complete concert, it's missing three songs between "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'" and "Just The Same Way".

The missing songs are "Do You Recall", "Daydream", and "When You're Alone (It Ain't Easy) which are all great songs from the "Evolution Album", but they were cut for the live "Studio Jam" special and therefore cut here as well.

Since this was recorded professionally back in 1979, it has shown up as different bootleg albums. "Evolution To Eternity" is the name of a 2 CD package released through Gypsy Eye Records. Another is called "Chi-Town Boogie" which is also a 2 CD set. Both include a Steve Perry interview which was part of the Studio Jam presentation.

The Setlist;
  1. Majestic
  2. La Do Da
  3. Next
  4. Feeling That Way
  5. Anytime
  6. Lights
  7. Lady Luck
  8. Too Late
  9. Kohoutek
  10. Winds Of March
  11. Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'
  12. Just The Same Way
  13. Lovin' You Is Easy
  14. Guitar Solo
  15. Wheel In The Sky
  16. She Makes Me Feel (Alright)
  17. Patiently
  18. Opened The Door

Liner Notes;
SUPERB LIVE BROADCAST RECORDING FROM JOURNEY AT THEIR CREATIVE PEAK Founded in 1973 by ex-members of Santana and Frumious Bandersnatch, Journey’s initial blend of progressive rock and jazz fusion was met tepidly by critics, and their early records were equally unsuccessful. Under pressure from Columbia Records to change their musical direction however, the band enlisted the talents of singer Steve Perry in 1977, which brought a new pop-oriented rock sound to the group making them appeal to fans of contemporaries like Foreigner and Boston. Hiring former Queen producer, Roy Thomas Baker, the band released Infinity in 1978, which provided their first platinum album and helped skyrocket the band to international fame. Thereafter, they created records in a more mainstream vein to capitalise on their newly-acquired success. By the end of 1978, Journey had already begun working on a new album with Baker. Evolution was released on 5th April 1979, and was met with such enthusiastic acclaim that its success even surpassed that of Infinity. Selling over three million copies and charting at No. 20 on the Billboard 200, the album also produced the band’s first Top 20 single, with Lovin , Touchin , Squeezin peaking at No. 16. The set presented here, recorded at Comiskey Park in Chicago on 9th August 79, featured as part of the tour in support of Evolution clearly demonstrates how far Journey had excelled in just a few short years. Featuring the aforementioned hit along with an array of favourites from their back catalogue, including Just The Same Way, Lights, and Wheel In The Sky, this live show is a prime snapshot of a band enjoying fame and beginning to reach the peak of their musical powers, while, incredibly, some of the group’s best work was still to come.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Steve Perry announces new Album to be released in 2016

On 12-15-2015 Steve Perry called The Mark In The Morning Show to wish Uncle Joe Benson a Happy Birthday and announces a new album coming in 2016!

Mark Thompson of Mark In The Morning hosts the radio show that D.J. and radio personality Uncle Joe Benson was visiting on his birthday on 12-10-15. Steve Perry called in as a mystery guest to also say "happy birthday" but he also let something else out. Steve Perry says that he is working on an album that should be ready in early 2016.

During the phone call Uncle Joe, Mark Thompson and Billy Gardell are there providing jokes and other fun facts about Uncle Joe.

This is the FULL LENGTH version of the entire phone call. Nothing has been edited in any way in this version. This version adds 5 minutes to the length...

This is the SHORT version of the phone call. Anything that didn't pertain to Steve Perry and Uncle Joe has been edited out. This version has 5 minutes edited out...

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Journey Force Newsletter dated March 1986 concludes the Steve Perry Interview

The Journey Force Newsletter from March and April 1986 continue this week with part two of three. The Steve Perry Interview by the Journey Force concludes on the first page shown below. The birthday celebrations continue for not only Steve Perry, but Jonathan Cain and Neal Schon had birthdays in February along with manager Herbie Herbert and Ross Valory...

The second page this week are full color pictures of birthday celebration at the Studio. Steve Perry's father, Marv joins Herbie for a birthday toast as well. All four pictures this week include Steve Perry!

The newsletter concludes next week...

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Journey's Concert Ticket Evolution Through Time part 10, Onward

Journey's latest Tour, "The San Francisco Fest 2016", has started off with a Bang! First we get Journey's main drummer back! Steve Smith rejoins Journey after his departure in 1998. He joined the band in 1979 after drummer Aynsley Dunbar left the band.

Steve Smith's drumming is so identifiable to the Journey sound that it's a huge improvement. This tour is the closest Journey has come to sounding like Journey than they have since 1997. The Tour kicked off on April 13, 2016 at Madison Square Gardens in New York City. The following is a ticket stub from April 16, 2016 at the PPL Center in Allentown, PA. The poster for these first three shows can be seen below.

April 16, 2016 at the PPL Center in Allentown, PA with Santana

Next, Journey played the Forum in Inglewood, CA (Los Angeles) with Santana. The the Tour continued on with The Doobie Brothers and special guest Dave Mason  and sometimes Neal "Vortex" Schon starting on May 5 2016 and going through at least September....

Here's a ticket stub from May 20, 2016 at GEXA Energy Pavillion in Dallas Texas. This ticket and video comes courtesy of Brian at bootradr.blogspot.com...

May 20, 2016 at Gexa Energy Pavillion in Dallas Texas

On Sunday, September 4, 2016 at 3:00PM comes the "San Francisco Fest 2016 On The Green" at AT&T Park in San Francisco where all bands including Santana, Journey, The Doobie Brothers, and The Steve Miller Band all on one Stage! There will also be a special guest, maybe even "Neal 'Vortex' Schon"...

I think it's seriously time for Journey to get back in the Studio and record a new album. It would be released in 2017 which would be 6 years since "eclipse" was released. Steve Perry has said on radio that he will be releasing an album in early 2016. Hopefully one way or another we will hear some new music soon.

Rumors still fly about Steve Perry getting back with the band. Of course that's what we need. To come back permanently would mean letting go of Arnel Pineda and releasing a new album, because Steve wouldn't want to sing anything from any album after "Trial By Fire". It seems more likely he could come back for a tour or some shows except for the fact that Steve has made it completely clear that he doesn't like touring. That only leaves a new album to record with the band. I'd go for that, a new Journey album with Steve Perry, yea I could get into that.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Journey Force Newsletter dated March 1986 includes Steve Perry Interview

The March and April 1986 edition of the Journey Force Newsletter begins with the first picture of Journey as a three-man band...

If you are able to save these files of the Newsletter you can read a great interview the Fan Club (Journey Force) had with Steve Perry at the time! It's the first interview Steve Perry gives about the firing of Ross Valory and Steve Smith. The new 1986 album name is finally announced in this issue as well!

The first two pages are included this week and the whole Newsletter will be in three parts. The Steve Perry interview will be concluded next week along with some great photos as Steve Perry celebrating his birthday with his father, Marv, on January 22, 1986 while in the Studio working on the new album, ("Raised On Radio").

to be continued next week.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Journey's Concert Ticket Evolution Through Time part 9, Freedom

By 2008 Neal Schon has a new wife and she too likes the internet. She happened across a guy named Arnel Pineda singing some of Journey's hits. Arnel soon becomes Journey's new lead singer and the band re-records 11 of Journey's top singles. This was done for financial reason to cut Steve Perry out of some royalties. The songs lack anything new and are just not as good, then you add a soundalike voice and the results are what you'd expect.

The first album with Journey's new singer is called Revelation. It's the first non-Perry Journey album to actually be really good. This one has some great songs that could have well been a follow up to Frontiers back in 1985. Finally Journey had some good songs to incorporate into the set so it wasn't only just the old greatest hits list. In 2011 Journey released the "Eclipse" album that was over-hyped and under-performed in sales and radio play. The "eclipse" tour of 2011-2012 were the first signs that Arnel's vocals too were starting to wear.

Former Member Steve Smith comes on again as Journey's drummer starting in 2016. Steve Smith was a member from 1979 though 1997 so it's been almost 20 years without him. There is only one more old member they need back in the lineup and that would be Steve Perry. One day it will happen and there will be sold out shows across america once again. The question is when.

Ticket Prices are roughly $50.00 in 2008 and they reach a whopping $129.00 in 2016 to See Journey with Steve Smith and Santana together. This is an absolute outrage. No wonder Journey can't get back in the limelight, the audience can't afford to go to the shows!

June 17, 2008 - Hammersmith Apollo. London, England

July 27, 2008 - Superpages.com Amphitheatre. Dallas, TX

March 26, 2011 - Arena Movistar. Santiago, Chile

July 21, 2012 - San Manuel Amphitheatre. San Bernardino, CA

October 30, 2012 - Barclays Center. Brooklyn, NY

March 14, 2015 - MidFlorida Credit Union at FL State Fairgrounds. Tampa, FL
Steve Miller Band, Tower Of Power

April 16, 2016 - PPL Center - Allentown, PA - Santana

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Steve Perry sings "Happy Birthday, Brian" to The Mark & Brian Program 5-05-1989

The Mark & Brian Show was an American radio talk show hosted by Mark Thompson and Brian Phelps, known on the air as "Mark & Brian."

On May 5, 1989 Steve Perry, an old friend of both Mark and Brian called in to wish Brian Phelps a happy 30th birthday. He also sang an original song Steve wrote for Brian.

I've been able to cobble together a couple pieces of this phone call together in order to create this video...

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Journey Force News 1998 - Steve Perry and Steve Smith leave Journey

This is an old text newsletter I received many years ago. I'm not sure of the origin.

May 7, 1998

Singer Steve Perry has announced that he is officially leaving Journey. The split comes in the wake of a January 1998 conversation between Perry and Journey keyboardist Jonathan Cain in which it was decided that, if Perry's health issues prohibited him from committing to a tour at that time, Cain and original Journey guitarist Neil Schon would reform the band with a new singer. Drummer Steve Smith has also left Journey. 
Perry became the lead singer of Journey in 1978 and, over the past two decades, sang on the group's ten platinum-plus albums including the 1996 Trial By Fire CD. Journey, with Steve Perry as vocalist, has sold more than 45 million records worldwide. Steve Perry has recently worked with David Foster and Carole Bayer-Sager in writing and recording "I Stand Alone," the principle track for the soundtrack to the animated feature film Quest For Camelot. 

Journey is currently comprised of new lead singer Steve Augeri (formerly of Tall Stories), original guitarist Neal Schon, bassist Ross Valory, keyboardist Jonathan Cain (a 1981 addition), and new drummer Dean Castranova (formerly of Bad English, an 80's "supergroup" which also featured Schon and Cain). The new Journey lineup has already recorded "Remember Me," a track for the soundtrack to the upcoming summer blockbuster film Armageddon; "Remember Me" was written by Neal Schon and Jack Blades and was produced by Kevin Shirley (who also produced Trial By Fire). The Armageddon soundtrack will be released by Columbia Records on June 30, 1998. 

Journey "Remember Me" single front cover

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Journey's Concert Ticket Evolution Through Time part 8, Voices

2005 was Journey's 30th anniversary since the first album was released! Journey was celebrating their 30th by having every member take a shot at lead vocals on at least one song on the new album, "Generations". This may have been a misfire as most of the songs do not sound like Journey. It is nice to hear the different voices, so maybe if the songs were better it would have a difference. The band also gave the album away at the concerts so there wasn't any reason for anyone to buy it.

Maybe the reason to use all of the bands voices was to cover up what was tragically happening to Steve Augeri. It seems Journey's grueling touring schedules have strained his voice. Unable to finish out the 2006-2007 Tour, he was replaced by Jeff Scott Soto to finish out the Tour. Apparently people didn't really like the different voice and demanded a Steve Perry soundalike. This would be the only Tour for Jeff with Journey as he never became a member of the band.

Ticket Prices continue to rise. By now the lowest ticket price listed here is nearly $40.00. My tickets at the Pechanga Inn were a ridiculous $85.00 each for a show that wasn't any different than the show I saw in 2001. This was the last time that I have seen Journey in concert. The crowd were middle aged fans and then some younger adults who probably don't even know who Steve Perry was. I didn't see many teenagers at the show.

The shows consisted again of the greatest hits from the Steve Perry era. Jonathan still enjoyed being Gregg Rolie while Deen Castronovo sang a few songs to ease the strain on Steve Augeri. Ross Valory always keeps consistent while Neal Schon wails on his guitar, so at least we had that.

September 27, 2005 - Nokia Live Theater. Grand Prairie, TX

October 5, 2005 - Pechanga Resort and Casino. Temecula, CA

July 29, 2006 - Smirnoff Music Centre Dallas, TX - Def Leppard

October 14, 2006 - Hyundai Pavilion at Glen Helen - Def Leppard

March 6, 2007 - Manchester Apollo Theatre. Manchester, UK

March 7, 2007 - Manchester Apollo Theatre. Manchester, UK

March 14, 2007 - Hammersmith Apollo. London , UK