A new singer for Journey?

From Andrew at Melodicrock:

2007 has been a long year for curious Journey fans and followers, patiently waiting to hear what the next move from the band would be following the decision to part with vocalist Jeff Scott Soto. And the demand for information from readers has been constant, so without further delay – it is finally time for a Journey update.

The band has a new singer. An official announcement and press release will come in due course, but I can confirm today that the brand new vocalist for Journey is Arnel Pineda. Arnel is the frontman for Philippines rock band Zoo, who earlier in 2007 released their debut album Zoology. Arnel is no stranger to performing, having been in various Asian bands since the 80s and has previously released a solo album back in 1999. But it is Zoo that has captured people’s attention – the band are extremely popular on the club circuit in the Philippines, and to a worldwide audience via a number of clips posted to YouTube. The band is known not only for their originals but for their performances of an array melodic rock covers. The band’s most popular covers have been that of Journey’s classics and it is these YouTube performances that caught the eye and ear of guitarist Neal Schon.

Check out Arnel Pineda in action, covering: ‘Faithfully’, ‘Open Arms’, and ‘Separate Ways’.

Neal Schon, Jonathan Cain and Journey management were so impressed they flew Arnel to San Francisco for an official audition. Now the band are eyeing off future moves, with a big 2008 on the horizon. A major US tour with possibly 2 other bands in tow has been planned and what’s even more interesting is news that the band has already been recording in San Francisco under the watchful eye of producer Kevin Shirley (responsible for the Trial By Fire and Arrival records with the band). Kevin Shirley has recently commented on his Web Diary that he was working with some “old friends from the Bay Area”. Then this comment a week or two later:

“Gosh, is it still 1980? Finished a wonderful, successful, stupidly creative stint in the Bay Area and then drove back home last night, feeling chuffed as only those rare, monster sessions leave you. Sometimes you just know when there’s history in the making…”

I contacted Kevin for a comment, but it was another contact that touched base first. I have been given the ok to print those comments from Kevin here:

“Neal and Jon called me and asked me in November to check out a couple of new songs, for an upcoming and possible project with Journey. I went to San Francisco to assess the new Journey and check out the material. I am so swamped, have a new baby and I did not want to be involved if it wasn’t focused and great. I thought I’d be there for 2 days. First, I was stunned at Arnel, who is a monster vocalist. He is the real deal. Just phenomenal. Its true Neal found him on YouTube. Next I heard the songs. I am always in awe of Jonathan Cain as songwriter/producer and together with Neal Schon, who adds the rock element, they are one of the great songwriting partnerships. Its true they don’t always see eye to eye musically, but the combination is magic. We spent a while talking and seeing where they were at. I have been brutally honest with them, and was not interested in being any part of them being a nostalgia/tribute band, which could happen if their focus got lost. Some of the songs were lacking direction which I, as an outspoken and brutal outsider, immediately pointed out and set about repairing. So I cut a couple of tracks and with all the shit out of the way, you have to hear them ignore their egos and me, and just play as Journey. All together in the studio. What a privilege to see all 5 of them playing together. They are fantastic. I am always cogniscent of the space Perry and Smith occupy in the sound and legacy, and won’t let that be underplayed, and Deen and Arnel are brilliant musicians, and with a little focus the entire band has found their place again. This is stronger than Trial By Fire and sounds like Journey, but state-of-the-art. People always talk up upcoming material, but just wait. Its unbelievable. There’s a full album of new material coming, but much more, too. Don’t believe all you read – there is no one else but the band in the studio to hear the music (although we do have a Make-A-Wish kid coming in soon). And that’s the dirt from Las Vegas, where I am mixing seven new original songs. I head back to San Francisco after a quick visit to London, to see the Led Zep reunion, to finish off where we began. I can’t wait, and you are going to love it!”

There has been talk of the band working on other recordings in the studio, but I’ll leave that for another update. What I can tell you is that an album of all new studio material is being worked on and is due for release in the American summer of 2008.
Journey’s first two shows of 2008 will be in South America – February 21th at Festival of Viña del Mar, at Quinta Vergara Arena and February 23 at Estadio San Carlos de Apoquindo in Santiago.


Andrew is usually on the money when it comes to things like this and he is very close to the journey camp. This has been in the works for a long time so I expect to see an official press release soon. Stay tuned!

— Steve

15 comments on “A new singer for Journey?

  1. Hey, the guy is quite good.

    I’m a bit weary about all of this back and forth in the band, but it does sound promising.

    Now, if only people stopped laughing at me for playing Journey once in a while, all would be cool.


  2. WTF??? Ok the guy can sing, but geesh, he is not Steve Perry and nowhere close to it!
    Journey, I love you guys, but let’s face it and get real!
    No one comes to your concerts to hear your new material.
    We only love the Steve Perry era Journey!
    Sorry guys, unless you get Steve back or at least his clone, you haven’t got a chance anymore.

  3. dude sound pretty good… well i guess he is better then JSS on the sound for journey… but i guess we got to see how far will this go…

  4. I really don’t see why there are some people so envious of other people’s success. Just let it be. Bands are sometimes like that. Members come and go. If you like their music , patronize them if not why bother? People are trying to make a living. For me, I want to hear Arnel perform with the band. It would surely be a trial by fire for him considering the fact that he is not an american. But Journey doesn’t belong to America anymore! They are an international artists and lots of followers from all over the world who loved their music both old and new. Goodluck to Arnel and may this JOURNEY of yours bring more success to the band.


  5. I am starting to extremely like slow rock, hearing from this dudes voice, I stated listening to songs from journey, survivor, boston and the likes. he is superb, he can do different styles and voice projection.. Open Arms for Arnel, indeed. Hope to catch the new Journey!

  6. Steve Perry is one kind of a singer and Arnel is just another one, they are both great .Yesterday was history let’s face the present time,music is for everyone ,it’s a universal language.Long live the “JOURNEY”

  7. Yes, I agree that Steve Perry is irreplaceable. But come on man, Journey has to move on without Stevie whether we like it or not. And in Arnel, I believe Journey has found a worthy player, and he does sound promising. J Cain said this is a new turning point for the band, they’re psyched and the materials recorded are phenoms. I’d like to believe that, and very much looking forward to 2008. Even if it doesnt work out, heck man, I’ll always be a Journey fan no matter what…

  8. I think this is great. I love all of Journey’s work. I was hesitant at first wit Augeri, but the new stuff with him was outstanding. I am so exicited and anxiously await the release of the next compilation. He is not Steve Perry, and he knows he’s is not. This wil be fabulous!!!

  9. I love Journey’s music. And I don’t think the new guy Arnel is going to pretend to be Steve Perry. Journey hired him as the lead singer ’cause he’s qualified. If you disagree with that decision then you’re NOT really a Journey fan but a Steve Perry fan… If the producer (Kevin Shirley) and the rest of the band were amazed with Arnel Pineda, then I would never doubt them… Good Luck and more power JOURNEY……. :) dst

  10. enigma…you sure are entitled to our own opinion….but wait and see…you will eat your own words in due time… i cant wait to see it happen….peace men! LONG LIVE JOURNEY! LONG LIVE ARNEL PINEDA!

  11. By now, just watching their numerous concerts on YouTube , this ‘monster vocalist,’ Arnel Pineda, has really proven his worth. Truly a gold mine for Journey. He performs much better than the previous singers giving more power and energy to the band. Never liked any other rock bands than Journey and thank God they’re back with their new immortal wonderful songs. A rebirth for the band, way to go Journey, congratulations!

  12. Come on guys!!! Don’t be such a racial, It’s music that we’re talking about. Everybody in the world deserves to listen to a great music. Journey’s Music reveals its legendary powerful music with this one simple but very talented guy “Arnel Pineda” who happens to have a very great voice!!!. Now, who do you think is the hero in this “revelation” after years and years of searching?
    “The members will definitely not choose someone who will destroy their legendary music”. Yes, he may not have originality, but it’s the style of Journey’s music we are bringing back to life. He has proven his worth that he has the most versatile voice, he could sing any kind of rock band’s music and any style of music. So please…let’s appreciate we have them back!!!

  13. arnel is the best singer th band have now….move on dude! steve can’t sing this type of song now, too old to do that. he lost it somewhere out there.

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