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Journey is an American rock band formed in 1973 in San Francisco, California.
The band has gone through several phases since its inception by former members of Santana. The band's greatest commercial success came in the late 1970s through the early 1980s with a series of power ballads and soaring classics such as "Don't Stop Believing", "Any Way You Want It", "Faithfully", "Open Arms", "Separate Ways" and "Wheel in the Sky".

In the Beginning:
Journey's roots lie in San Francisco, where in 1971 Santana manager Walter "Herbie" Herbert decided to put together a band of musicians originally called The Golden Gate Rhythm Section. Dissatisfied with the musical direction that Carlos Santana wanted to follow, keyboardist/vocalist Gregg Rolie and guitarist Neal Schon left Santana in 1972. Prairie Prince of The Tubes, bassist Ross Valory of Frumious Bandersnatch, and rhythm guitarist George Tickner rounded out the group. After an unsuccessful radio contest to name the group (which produced such fascinating entries as "rumpled foreskin"), roadie Jack Villanueva suggested the name "Journey." The band's first public appearance came at Winterland on New Years Eve, 1973. The next day, they flew to Hawaii and played the Crater Festival.
In early 1973, Prairie Prince left to rejoin The Tubes, so Herbert brought in Aynsley Dunbar, a drummer who had played with John Lennon, Frank Zappa, John Mayall, Jeff Beck, Bonzo Dog Band, Mothers of Invention, Lou Reed, and David Bowie. On February 5, 1974, the new line-up made their debut at the Great American Music Hall and secured a contract with Columbia Records. Journey released its self-titled first album Journey in 1975. It showcased their considerable talent as jazz-fusion/progressive rock musicians. Rhythm guitarist Tickner left the band before they cut their second album, Look into the Future (1976), which toned down--a little--the overt progressiveness of their first release but still retained the jazz fusion base. The following year's Next tried for shorter tracks to increase accessibility, with guitarist Neal Schon singing lead on several tracks, but still didn't bring commercial success (although it did start a pattern of one-word album titles).

A New Lead Singer, and a New Direction (Almost):
With the mediocre sales of the album Next, the band was pressured by the studio to change direction and find a new lead singer/frontman. As a result, Journey enlisted Robert Fleischman. A southern California native, Fleischman had been playing with a Chicago-based touring band when his manager, Barry Fey, brought him to Denver in early 1977 for a showcase with studio executives. "It was completely snowing and we didnt know if people were gonna make it, and then all the people from the west coast and the east coast made it," Fleischman recalls. He was "discovered" by a CBS executive at the showcase, and within two weeks was flown out to San Francisco for an audition with Journey.
Told that the band was transitioning to a more popular style, akin to that of Foreigner and Boston, Fleischman knew that his Led Zeppelin-inspired vocal style would be an asset. But he was taken aback by the sheer power of the band he was hooking up with. In their first studio session, Fleishman recalls, "It was like...having rockets on the back of your pockets. And theyd been together so long and they were so tight that it was great to play with people that way." The sessions that winter ultimately produced "For You," which later appeared on the Time box set, and "Wheel in the Sky," later recorded--without Fleischman--for the Infinity album.
Fleischman went out on the road with Journey that spring, but his tenure in the band was short-lived. He kept his own manager, Barry Fey, which proved a constant affront to the authority of Journey's manager, Herbie Herbert. Additionally, Herbert seemed unwilling to let the band's new direction play out immediately, and Fleischman often found himself relegated to shaking a tambourine while the band played its classic numbers to its diehard core of jazz-fusion fans. Fleischman also apparently clashed with other band members when he failed to finish new songs promptly.

The Second Time's the Charm: A New Lead Singer, Redux:
Manager Herbie Herbert had heard of singer Steve Perry, who had recently seen the demise of his own band, Alien Project. After hearing the singer's demo tape (put in his hands by band-naming roadie Jack Villanueva), Herbie knew he needed to make a change. After an interesting interlude in which Perry was covertly introduced to the band (with Fleischman being told Perry was Villanueva's Portuguese cousin), Fleischman was fired. Perry made his public debut with Journey at the Old Waldorf in San Francisco on October 28, 1977.

In Perry's first meeting with Schon, the pair quickly penned their first song together, "Patiently", which would appear on the new album Infinity in 1978. Perry added his clean, crisp, powerful tenor to now-classic tracks such as "Lights," "Wheel in the Sky," and "Anytime." In addition, Queen producer Roy Thomas Baker (who had originally been brought in by Fleischman) helped provide a more layered sound. The changes worked, and Journey was launched into stardom. Infinity reached No. 21 on the album charts and gave Journey their first R.I.A.A.-certified Platinum album.
But not all members of the band were entirely comfortable with the new musical direction. In September 1978, drummer Aynsley Dunbar was fired (he later joined Jefferson Starship). His replacement was Berklee-trained jazz drummer Steve Smith. The band's subsequent album Evolution produced their first Billboard Hot 100 Top 20 single, "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin.'"
1980's Departure continued the band's upward climb, reaching No. 8 on the album charts. "Any Way You Want It" was a Top 25 single and received solid FM radio airplay. The band then flew to Japan to record the soundtrack Dream After Dream to the film of the same name at the invitation of the movie's director.
At this point, the live shows were overwhelmingly attended by those who favored the new musical direction, with some swooning over singer Steve Perry the way an earlier generation had over Elvis Presley (although the band reverted to its earlier songs during the singer's offstage breaks). Journey was poised for large-scale success, and in early 1981 released a live album, Captured, recorded during a series of shows on the 1980 Departure tour. The first five songs on the album were taken from an August 8th show at the Forum in Montreal, Quebec. Two others were from one of the October dates in Tokyo and the rest came from a series of shows at Detroit's Cobo Hall.
Exhausted from extensive touring, Rolie departed, leaving a successful band for the second time in his career. He recommended Jonathan Cain of The Babys as his replacement. As if predicting the musical mood of the 1980s, Cain favored the synthesizer over Rolie's Hammond B-3 organ. The band knew it was getting an incredible keyboardist, but they had no idea just how powerful Cain's songwriting skills were.

Massive Commercial Success:
In 1981, Journey's seventh studio album, Escape, went to No. 1 on the album charts and would go on to become their biggest selling and most popular studio album (nine times platinum). The hits "Who's Crying Now", "Don't Stop Believin'" and "Open Arms" all reached the Top 10 as singles. The band's polished sound, fronted by Perry's distinctive and soon-to-be widely imitated voice, became a popular radio presence.
In particular, "Don't Stop Believin'" showcased how well Perry's soaring tenor could interlace with Cain's full piano chords and Schon's dynamic guitar work, while "Open Arms" which spent six weeks at No. 2 on the charts helped establish Perry as the standard for 1980s arena rock power ballad vocals.
Such success did not help Journey with rock critics. The 1983 Rolling Stone Record Guide gave each of their albums only one star, with Dave Marsh writing that "Journey was a dead end for San Francisco area rock ... utter triviality ... banality ... reek[s] of exploitative cynicism." Marsh later would anoint Escape as one of the worst number-one albums of all time. Fairly or not, critics often lumped Journey together with other one-word-named "corporate rock" bands such as Boston, Foreigner, Asia, Survivor and so forth. Journey was also one of the first bands to be sponsored by a major advertiser (Budweiser Beer) which they acknowledged in the credits on their album covers. This contributed to their critics labeling them "corporate rock," or more precisely, "corporate-sponsored rock." Manager Herbie Herbert, however, has made light of such criticism, saying "You gotta make hay while the sun shines." The band had clearly left behind its Haight-Ashbury hippie roots.
In 1982, the band contributed the track "Only Solutions" to the Disney feature film Tron. Coincidentally, later that year the group became the first rock band to inspire a video game: both the Journey arcade game by Bally/Midway, and Journey Escape by Data Age for the Atari 2600.
Journey's next album, 1983's Frontiers, continued their commercial success. It reached No. 2 on the album charts and scored four hit singles, with "Faithfully" and "Separate Ways" reaching the highest at Nos. 12 and 8, respectively. Cain's presence continued to be felt on this album, both in his songwriting (he was the sole writer of "Faithfully") and in his increased use of synthesizers.
It was now the MTV era, and Journey's popularity was boosted by a documentary-like music video for "Faithfully", which showed various band members and their families on tour and which helped earn the song a place, along with Bob Seger's "Turn the Page" and Jackson Browne's "The Load Out," as a life-on-the-road favorite.
A short time later, the band received a request from a dying 16-year-old boy named Kenny Sykaluk, who was battling cystic fibrosis. Kenny wanted to meet the band. The band honored the request and not only visited Kenny at his bedside, but gave him a walkman with their newest single, "Only The Young". Kenny died less than a day later. In Journey's episode of Behind the Music, Jonathan Cain remembered the encounter in tears, while Neal Schon noted that it "changed my outlook on life."

Separate Ways:
Lead singer Steve Perry received much of the credit for Journey's success. In 1984, he released a solo album, Street Talk, which was successful and scored a very popular song and MTV video with "Oh Sherrie". Perry also recorded "Don't Fight It" (1982), with Kenny Loggins. Guitarist Neal Schon produced two albums with Jan Hammer in 1981 and 1983, and in 1985 was part of the HSAS (Hagar Schon Aaronson Shrieve) project.
Following the release of his solo album, singer Steve Perry took more control over the studio direction of the band. Much to the dismay of manager Herbie Herbert, bass player Ross Valory and drummer Steve Smith were fired from the band for musical and professional differences, and Journey released their 1986 album Raised on Radio as a trio--Perry, Schon, and Cain. Various studio musicians handled the two vacant slots in the studio, including future American Idol judge Randy Jackson and established studio musician Larrie Londin. Production was stop-and-go, due to the poor health of Perry's mother, Mary Perry. Overall, the album sold 2 million copies. A truncated tour followed, which featured Jackson on bass and Mike Baird on drums. Afterward, Perry, exhausted from the constant touring, grieving the death of his mother and the collapse of his six-year relationship with Sherrie "Oh Sherrie" Swafford, walked away from Journey in 1987, ending the band's ride at the top.
Despite working on a solo project in 1989 (titled Against The Wall) that was shelved, Steve Perry left the industry for several years before recording "For the Love of Strange Medicine" in 1994 and releasing a greatest hits compilation in 1998. Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain teamed up with Cain's ex-Babys bandmates John Waite and Ricky Phillips, forming Bad English with drummer Deen Castronovo in 1988. In addition, they each recorded several solo albums. Schon and Castronovo then joined Schon's brother-in-law's group, Hardline.
Steve Smith immersed himself in his jazz project, Vital Information, which over time developed a respectful following. In 1991, Ross Valory, Steve Smith, and Greg Rolie joined The Storm with singer Kevin Chalfant and guitarist Josh Ramos.
From 1987 to 1995, Journey saw their catalogue sales continue to grow. They released three compilations, all of which sold extremely well. In 1993, Kevin Chalfant (of The Storm) performed with members of Journey on a few shows, and Schon, Cain, Valory, Smith and Rolie briefly considered a reunion as Journey with Chalfant as lead singer, but that lineup did not come to fruition. That year, singer Steve Perry proposed rejoining the band on the condition that they seek new management. Herbie Herbert was fired and Irving Azoff retained, and in 1995 Perry once again became a member of Journey.

In 1995, the 1980-1985 Journey line-up was re-united. Perry, Schon, Cain, Valory, and Smith went back into the studio and produced the reunion album Trial by Fire in 1996, including the hit single, "When You Love a Woman," which was nominated for a Grammy Award.
Following the success of Trial by Fire, the members of Journey prepared for a much-anticipated tour. The media hype and the overall excitement surrounding the band was intense but it all came to a grinding halt when Perry injured his hip while hiking in Hawaii. Perry likely needed hip replacement surgery. He couldn't perform on stage without the surgery, but was unwilling to come to a decision. In 1998, the band pressed Perry to make a decision. When Perry refused, Cain and Schon decided to continue the band without him. Drummer Steve Smith decided to leave the band at that time, returning to his own band, Vital Information.
In February, 2001, the band participated in an episode of VH1's Behind the Music, but statements made during the interviews only exacerbated tensions between Perry and the group. Later that year, Herbie Herbert gave an in-depth online interview which included his perspective on the history of Journey. Then, in 2003, Robert Fleischman discussed his own involvement at a critical time in the band's history.

1998 saw Journey in need of a drummer and a lead vocalist. The drumming position was filled by Deen Castronovo, Schon's and Cain's Bad English bandmate, and the drummer for Hardline. The lead vocalist position was filled by Steve Augeri, former Tyketto and Tall Stories vocalist. Augeri had dropped out of the music business and was working at The Gap in New York City as a store manager. He received a phone call from Schon, who had heard a tape of Augeri's vocals. Schon invited him to audition for the band and, despite having not sung much in recent months, he impressed Journey members enough to land the gig.
The resemblance of Augeri to Perry, visually, vocally, and even in the like-sounding name, caused a major rift among the longtime fans, made all-the-more obvious by the new popularity of the internet with its message boards and forums. Some fans refused to accept Journey without Steve Perry. Others went so far as to become serious Steve Augeri fanatics, blaming Perry for the band's decline in popularity. But most fans reluctantly accepted the change and (after seeing him live or hearing him on subsequent recordings) accepted Steve Augeri. Aside from his talent, this also had much to do with the new singer's personality: he was incredibly gracious to every fan he met.
Journey's new incarnation promptly went to work recording a track for the soundtrack to the movie Armageddon called "Remember Me". In 2001, they released their next studio album, Arrival. The album originally was released in Japan in late 2000, but due to its being leaked on the internet and fans' negative reaction to its ballad-heavy sound, the band decided to delay the U.S. release and record two more harder tunes for the American version. "All the Way" became a minor adult contemporary hit from the album.
In 2003, the band released a four-track CD titled "Red 13," with an album cover design chosen through a fan contest. In 2005, the band embarked on their 30th anniversary tour, giving away free promotional copies of their latest studio album, Generations, to numbered ticket holders at most concerts, and eventually released the album commercially that October. The shows, which were three hours long, were divided into two sets: the first set included material from the early years (some of it being played live for the first time in decades), while the second was based on material from Escape and onward.

The 2004 edition of the Rolling Stone Album Guide presented a critical view of the band, calling Journey the perfect karaoke act and giving none of their studio albums more than two-and-a-half stars (out of five). During the 2000s, several Journey tribute bands formed around the country, to varying degrees of success, and singer Kevin Chalfant of The Storm occasionally teamed up with The Gregg Rolie Band to perform a few Journey numbers from the 1978-1980 era.
Although cynically written off by some as a corporate pop act, Journey has retained an affectionate following throughout the years; their music appears often in various TV shows and movies. American radio still spins Journey hits regularly, exposing the band to a new generation of listeners. Journey gained new attention in the 2000s due to Randy Jackson, who since his Journey involvement had become a successful recording-industry figure and then an American Idol judge. Film clips of Jackson with the band on tour were shown, and various contestants on Idol attempted to measure up vocally by singing Journey numbers. The best remembered of these attempts were Clay Aiken's take on "Open Arms" in a key semifinal round of the show (and later in a duet with fellow Idol Kelly Clarkson on their joint concert tour), and Elliott Yamin's praiseworthy performance of the same song in the 2006 semifinal round.
Judy Torres released a cover of Journey's "Faithfully" as a single CD in late 2005. And on June 10, 2006 Sirius Satellite Radio named Journey's "Faithfully" the top prom song of the '80s. The anthem "Don't Stop Believin'" became a public rallying cry for the 2004 World Series Champion Boston Red Sox after they fell behind 3 to 0 against the Yankees in the American League Championship Series and again for the 2005 World Series champion Chicago White Sox (Perry was invited to the celebration parade in Chicago, where he sang the song with members of the team). On February 6, 2005 "Don't Stop Believin'" was heard in a FedExKinko's commercial starring Burt Reynolds that aired during Super Bowl XXXIX. In December, 2005, "Don't Stop Believin'" rose to #13 on the "Hot Digital Songs" chart, and was nominated for two categories on VH1's Big in '05 awards show. In July, 2007, the song was featured in the final scene of the enormously popular series finale of the HBO show, The Sopranos. Petra Haden released a cover of the song on a compilation album called Guilt By Assocation in September, 2007.
In 2003, Journey was inducted into the San Francisco Music Hall of Fame, with Gregg Rolie, Jonathan Cain, Steve Smith, Ross Valory, Neal Schon, Aynsley Dunbar, Deen Castronovo, and Steve Augeri appearing. Two years later, on January 21, 2005, Journey received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and Steve Perry made a surprise appearance at the ceremony. Relations with the rest of the group improved, but Perry said there was no chance of rejoining his former band in the foreseeable future. In all, ten current or former Journey bandmates appeared that day: besides Perry, there were Augeri, Cain, Castronovo, Dunbar, Fleischman, Schon, Smith, George Tickner, and Valory.

The Lead Singer Issue, Revisited:
In July, 2006, Steve Augeri began experiencing problems with his voice and was forced to step down. He announced he was temporarily leaving the tour due to a throat infection which required that he rest his vocal cords. The band hired Jeff Scott Soto, of Talisman, to fill in for him. In addition, Deen Castronovo, who had long been supplying background vocals and even backing up Augeri on lead, performed the lead vocals during power ballads like "Faithfully" and "Open Arms". On December 19, 2006, the band issued a statement on their official website naming Soto their new permanent lead singer. Then, in an about-face, on June 12, 2007, Journey announced that Soto is no longer the lead singer, and said that they were looking to move in a new direction.
The brief tenure of Jeff Scott Soto as lead singer resembled the equally brief tenure of Robert Fleischman in that position in 1977, out of which came the decision to hire Steve Perry. Fan speculation hinted that the band was seeking the same formula thirty years later.
As of November, 2007, a new lead singer had yet to be named. Longtime friend of the band and former Storm frontman, Kevin Chalfant, had been considered a strong candidate for the position. The band briefly gave serious consideration to 36-year-old Jeremey Hunsicker of Roanoke, Virginia, the frontman for the Journey tribute band Frontiers, but Hunsicker soon turned down the position. Other conjectures included Hugo Valenti, the frontman for the New York-based Journey tribute band Evolution. In September, a picture surfaced of the band with little-known Filipino singer Arnel Pineda, from the former cover band Zoo (now performing original material). Accompanying articles stated that Pineda had been invited to the United States to audition for the position of lead singer, and that MelodicRock.Com's Andrew McNiece, who had been the first to accurately predict the departures of Steve Perry and Jeff Scott Soto, was now predicting Pineda's having been hired by the band. (As reality sometimes mirrors fiction, the possible hiring of tribute-band lead vocalists is the plot of the 2001 film Rock Star starring Mark Wahlberg, coincidentally a film in which Jeff Scott Soto provided vocals for the original vocalist in the fictional band Steel Dragon.)
Steve Perry himself could not be ruled out for the position. Although Perry had stated numerous times that he would not return, he had been quoted repeatedly saying "never say never" in regards to returning to the band. This possibility seemed highly unlikely after June 21, 2007, when Steve posted a message on squashing these rumors, saying that he had "no such plans whatsoever to do that."

-Jonathan Cain.
-Deen Castronovo.
-Neal Schon.
-Ross Valory.
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