Journey is an American rock band formed in San Francisco, California in 1973. 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 songs such as “Don’t Stop Believin'”, “Any Way You Want It”, “Faithfully”, “Open Arms”, “Separate Ways”, and “Wheel in the Sky”.
Journey has been eligible for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame since 2000, but Gregg Rolie is currently the only member of Journey who has been inducted — as a member of parent band Santana. In 2009, Steve Perry, the band’s best-known lead vocalist, will be eligible for induction as a solo artist.
The original members of Journey came together in San Francisco in 1973 under the auspices of former Santana manager Herbie Herbert. Originally called the Golden Gate Rhythm Section and intended to serve as a backup group for established Bay Area artists, the band included recent Santana alumni Neal Schon on lead guitar and Gregg Rolie on keyboards and lead vocals. Drummer Prairie Prince of The Tubes, bassist Ross Valory and rhythm guitarist George Tickner, both of Frumious Bandersnatch, rounded out the group. The band quickly abandoned the original “backup group” concept and developed a distinctive jazz fusion style. After an unsuccessful radio contest to name the group, roadie John Villaneuva suggested the name “Journey.” The band’s first public appearance came at the Winterland Ballroom on New Year’s Eve, 1973. Prairie Prince rejoined The Tubes shortly thereafter, and the band hired British drummer Aynsley Dunbar, who had recently worked with John Lennon and Frank Zappa. On February 5, 1974, the new line-up made their debut at the Great American Music Hall and secured a recording contract with Columbia Records.
Journey released their eponymous first album in 1975, and rhythm guitarist Tickner left the band before they cut their second album, Look into the Future (1976). Neither album achieved significant sales, so Schon, Valory, and Dunbar took singing lessons in an attempt to add vocal harmonies to Rolie’s lead. The following year’s Next contained shorter tracks with more vocals and featured Schon as lead singer on several of the songs.
New musical direction, 1977–1980
Journey’s album sales did not improve and Columbia Records requested that they change their musical style and add a frontman, with whom keyboardist Gregg Rolie could share lead vocal duties. The band hired Robert Fleischman and transitioned to a more popular style, akin to that of Foreigner and Boston. Journey went on tour with Fleischman in 1977 and together the new incarnation of the band wrote the hit “Wheel in the Sky“. But fans were lukewarm to the change, and personality differences resulted in Fleischman being fired within the year.
In the fall of 1977, Journey hired Steve Perry as their new lead singer. Perry added a clean, tenor sound and the band became a true pop act. Their fourth album, Infinity (1978) reached No. 21 on the album charts and gave the band their first RIAA-certified platinum album plus hit singles out of “Lights” and “Wheel In the Sky“.
Drummer Aynsley Dunbar did not get along with singer Steve Perry and did not approve of the new musical direction. He was fired in 1978 and replaced by Berklee-trained jazz drummer Steve Smith. Perry, Schon, Rolie, Smith, and bass player Ross Valory recorded 1979’s Evolution, which gave the band their first Billboard Hot 100 Top 20 single, “Lovin,’ Touchin,’ Squeezin“; and 1980’s Departure, which reached No. 8 on the album charts and included the top-25 hit “Any Way You Want It“.
Journey’s newfound success brought the band an almost entirely new fan base. During the 1980 Departure world tour, the band recorded a live album, Captured. They also recorded the soundtrack to the film Dream After Dream while in Japan.
Exhausted from extensive touring, keyboardist Gregg Rolie now left a successful band for the second time in his career. Keyboardist Stevie Roseman was brought in to record the lone studio track for Captured, “The Party’s Over (Hopelessly in Love)“, but Rolie recommended pianist Jonathan Cain of The Babys as the permanent replacement. With Cain’s replacement of Rolie’s Hammond B-3 organ with his own synthesizers, the band was poised to redefine rock music for a new decade in which they would achieve their greatest musical success.
Height of popularity, 1981–1983
Journey released their eighth and biggest-selling studio album, Escape, in 1981. The album, which has thus far sold nine times platinum, went to number one on the album charts that year, and included three top-ten hits: “Who’s Crying Now“, “Don’t Stop Believin’“, and “Open Arms“.
Capitalizing on their success, the band recorded radio commercials for Budweiser and sold rights to their likenesses and music for use in two video games: the Journey arcade game by Bally/Midway and Journey Escape by Data Age for the Atari 2600.
This success was met with piqued criticism. The 1983 Rolling Stone Record Guide gave each of the band’s albums only one star, with Dave Marsh writing that “Journey was a dead end for San Francisco area rock“. Marsh later would anoint Escape as one of the worst number-one albums of all time.
Journey’s next album, 1983’s Frontiers, continued their commercial success, reaching No. 2 on the album charts. Four hit singles included “Separate Ways“, which reached #8, and “Faithfully, which reached #12. During the subsequent tour, the band contracted with NFL Films to record a video documentary of their life on the road, Frontiers and Beyond.
Lead singer Steve Perry and guitarist Neal Schon both pursued solo projects between 1982 and 1985, and when they returned to Journey to record their 1986 album Raised on Radio, bass player Ross Valory and drummer Steve Smith were fired from the band for musical and professional differences. Studio musicians handled the two vacant slots, including future American Idol judge Randy Jackson and established session player Larrie Londin. The album sold two million copies. A truncated tour followed, which featured Jackson on bass and Mike Baird on drums. Steve Perry left Journey in 1987.
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. Steve Smith started a jazz band, Vital Information, and teamed up with Ross Valory and Gregg Rolie to create The Storm with singer Kevin Chalfant and guitarist Josh Ramos.
Between 1987 and 1995, Journey’s record label released three compilations. In October 1993, Kevin Chalfant (of The Storm) performed with Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain at a roast for manager Herbie Herbert for the Thunder Road benefit. After that, Schon, Cain, Valory, Smith and Rolie briefly considered reuniting the band with Chalfant as lead singer. But in 1995 Steve Perry agreed to rejoin the band on the condition that they seek new management. Herbie Herbert was fired and The Eagles Manager Irving Azoff retained.
In 1995, Perry, Schon, Cain, Valory, and Smith reunited to record Trial by Fire. Released in 1996, the album included the hit single “When You Love a Woman“, which reached #12 on the Billboard charts and was nominated in 1997 for a Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.
Plans for a subsequent tour ended when Perry injured his hip hiking in Hawaii in the summer of 1997 and could not perform without hip replacement surgery — which he refused to undergo. In 1998, Schon and Cain decided to seek a new lead singer, at which point drummer Steve Smith left the band as well.
Lead singer replaced, 1998–2006
In 1998, Journey hired drummer Deen Castronovo, Schon’s and Cain’s Bad English bandmate, and drummer for Hardline, to replace Steve Smith. The lead vocalist position was filled by Steve Augeri, formerly of Tyketto and Tall Stories.
That same year, Journey with Steve Augeri and Deen Castronovo recorded a track for the soundtrack to the movie Armageddon called “Remember Me“. The band released their next studio album, Arrival, in Japan in late 2000 and in the United States in 2001. “All the Way” became a minor adult contemporary hit from the album. In 2002, the band released a four-track CD titled “Red 13“, with an album cover design chosen through a fan contest. In 2005 the band was inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame, embarked on their 30th anniversary tour, and released their twelfth full-length studio album, Generations, in which each band member performed lead vocals on at least one song.
Lead singer replaced again, 2006–present
In July 2006, Steve Augeri was dropped from the band while they toured with Def Leppard, with the official statement citing a ‘chronic throat infection’ as the problem. Augeri had been suffering from vocal attrition problems since 2003 and Journey had been using pre-recorded lead vocals. The band hired singer Jeff Scott Soto from Talisman to fill in, and Soto officially replaced Augeri as Journey’s lead singer in December 2006. On June 12, 2007, Journey announced that Soto was no longer the lead singer, and said that they were looking to move in a new direction.
In December 2007, after briefly considering the lead singer of a Virginia-based tribute band, Journey hired Filipino singer Arnel Pineda of the cover band The Zoo after Neal Schon saw him on YouTube singing covers of Journey songs. Journey debuted their new lead singer in February 2008 in Chile, released the album Revelation, and announced a summer tour with Heart and Cheap Trick. Revelation debuted at #5 on the Billboard charts, selling more than 196,000 units in its first two weeks, making it the band’s best selling album since Trial by Fire.
Although Pineda was not the first foreign national to become a member of Journey (former drummer Aynsley Dunbar is British) nor even the first non-white (former bass player Randy Jackson is Black), the transition was difficult for a number of fans who expressed what Marin Independent Journal writer Paul Liberatore called “an undercurrent of racism.” Keyboardist Jonathan Cain responded to such sentiments: “We’ve become a world band. We’re international now. We’re not about one color.”
Look Into the Future (1976)
Raised On Radio (1986)
Trial By Fire (1996)
2. UK Based psychedelic trance producer Giampiero “Jay” Mastino studied Sound Engineering and Music Technology in 2003 and soon thereafter began solo production under the name Journey, and in collaboration with Anton Petrov as Star~Trip. In 2009 he also started a new progressive project under the name OM. Jay also DJ’s under the name Jay OM.
In 2004, he conceived the vision of a network of like-minded artists in the psy-trance and ambient genres, all working to promote themselves and each other under one banner. Thus the Free-Spirit Records label was born… Originally intended to focus on artist management, the label’s skyrocketing success combined with the enthusiasm of Jay, the artists, and fans enabled Free-Spirit to outgrow its horizons. Free-Spirit continues to build a collective of artists and djs from around the globe, aiming to create and provide access to a combined set of resources not available to them as individuals, making it just a little easier for all to concentrate on what they truly love, which is the music!
Free-Spirit Vol.1 “Brahamaputra”, the debut release for Free-Spirit Records compiled by Jay OM, hit the shops in October 2006, featuring both a Journey and a Star~Trip track amongst others and Christopher Lawrence (ranked No. 4 DJ in the world) featured Journey’s Spotless mind in his Top 10 in December 2006. Free-Spirit Vol.2 “Eupsychia” followed in June 2007 with 2 more tracks from Journey and Star~Trip and in 2008 a another 3 releases on Free-Spirit Vol.3 “Neophilia” and V/A Children of Jah (Revolve Magazine). 2009 saw the release of Journey’s highly anticipated debut solo Album “The Man who Sold the Time” as well as further releases on various V/A Compilations on Mutagen, Antu, Solar Tech. Catalyst, Alchemy and Free-Spirit Records. Jay is currently working on his 2nd Journey solo album.
Today, Jay’s reputation as an active, involved, and hard working individual in the global trance circuit precedes him. His commitment and enthusiasm for trance music has left an indelible impression on the world scene already, and Jay’s future has never looked brighter, from his burgeoningly successful record label to his organized events in the UK, to his upcoming solo releases. Jay works tirelessly at his art and trade and the music he brings to the masses exemplifies the fruits of his labour and energy.
3. Journey is an underground hip hop artist
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