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Ross Interview

PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 11:11 am
by George_g888
http://www.theadvocate.com/new_orleans/ ... 3b7d0.html

For bassist Ross Valory, the Journey never ends. It goes on and on and on and on.

He and guitarist Neal Schon date to Journey’s 1973 inception in San Francisco. Other than a decade-long departure spanning the mid-‘80s to the mid-‘90s — at one point, future “American Idol” judge Randy Jackson took his place on bass — Valory has remained a steadfast, unflappable presence.

In keeping with that demeanor, he’s staying out of the current kerfuffle involving Schon and Jonathan Cain, Journey’s keyboardist since 1980. Schon recently took to social media to remind Cain who’s in charge. Cain’s sideline as a Christian musician married to televangelist Paula White apparently doesn’t sit well with Schon, who believes overt expressions of religion and politics are bad for the Journey brand.

Intra-band drama aside, Journey will return to the Smoothie King Center on Friday for the fourth time in eight years, the latest chapter in a long-running relationship with New Orleans and local promoter Don Fox’s Beaver Productions. Among other highlights, that relationship has involved headlining City Park’s Tad Gormley Stadium during the 1983 “Frontiers” tour and shooting a video for that album’s “Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)” on a wharf along the New Orleans riverfront.

In addition to “Separate Ways,” Friday’s show will likely feature “Who’s Crying Now” and “Stone in Love,” radio favorites from Journey’s massively popular 1981 album “Escape.” The bass lines of each are essential to the songs’ architecture, but Valory didn’t write them. Cain developed the “Who’s Crying Now” bass part. Schon, who plays bass in addition to guitar, wrote the “Stone In Love” part.

That said, “there’s a difference between who wrote the part, and who owns it,” Valory said during a phone interview this week. “I own it.”

In that regard, he sees a parallel between himself and Arnel Pineda, the Philippines-born singer who has fronted Journey since 2007. Pineda’s airy tenor is eerily similar to that of Steve Perry, the now-retired vocalist who co-wrote and originally sang most of Journey’s hits.

“Arnel owns it,” Valory said of the frontman role. “It’s not only by his talent, but by where his heart is. As an entertainer, he invites everyone in the hall to enjoy the evening with us.”

Pineda wasn’t inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April alongside the more senior members of Journey. They included drummer Steve Smith, who first joined Journey in 1978 and powered the band through its commercial heyday.

Smith returned to the fold last year after drummer Deen Castronovo was dismissed following a 2015 domestic abuse arrest attributed to a “drug-induced psychosis level of intoxication.” (Castronovo subsequently apologized, went to rehab and accepted a plea deal that gave him probation.)

Drummer Omar Hakim, a highly respected hired gun for the likes of David Bowie, Madonna, Sting and Dire Straits, stepped in as Castronovo’s last-minute replacement for a 2015 tour. Hakim turned out to be the perfect transition between Castronovo’s straight-ahead, hard rock approach and Smith’s more jazz-influenced style, Valory said.

“Omar plays with more intensity, not unlike Deen, but he’s got the musicality, the ears, and the technique in common with Steve Smith. I really enjoyed playing with Omar. It was like shifting gears.”

Being reunited with Smith “has been fabulous,” Valory continued. “He recorded 80 percent of the songs we’re doing, so it’s organic. It’s back to the fundamentals of how the song was created, how we put our parts to it, how it was recorded. It is refreshingly new.”

Smith has restored “a swing to compositions that were created that way. He’s also very dynamic. When he plays softly, he plays softly. When he plays loud, it’s only to the limit of what sounds good. He’s not a banger. He plays with the intensity on the drum head up to the point where it loses its good sound. There is a dynamic range which we have not experienced in quite some time.”

As the rhythm section, “Steve and I drive the bus. It’s very comfortable. For the singer, the soloists, the other instrumentation, we’re the wind under the wings. Without being too glib about it, it’s a very ideal situation.”

So, too, is being in Journey in general; business is very, very good. They opened 2017 with an Asian tour that visited Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and South Korea. After a run of “secondary,” i.e. smaller, markets in the United States, they notched their second nine-show residency at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas; it included performances of the entire “Escape” and “Frontiers” albums.

The current summer tour concludes July 30 at Citi Field in New York for the Classic West concert alongside Fleetwood Mac, Eagles, Steely Dan, the Doobie Brothers and Earth Wind & Fire. The same all-star line-up plays Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles two weeks prior.

They’ll take a break from August until next May. Plans are afoot for a 2018 world tour with Def Leppard, another arena stalwart with a slew of hits of which fans never seem to tire.

For Journey, the “dirty dozen” of setlist staples includes “Don’t Stop Believin’” — which Valory, in Weird Al Yankovic mode, jokingly refers to as “Don’t Stop Breathin’” — “Wheel in the Sky,” “Any Way You Want It,” “Faithfully,” “Lovin’, Touchin’, Squeezin” and “Lights.”

“We’ve played most of our hits many, many times — we’re in our 20th year of consistently touring, so we kind of know the songs pretty good,” Valory said. “People want to hear those songs that way, and they do.

“And they keep coming back. They just love the music, and they are so happy when we come through town. That’s pretty hard to beat. I am appreciative and thankful for what opportunity I have had, and what the band has. I don’t know what to do, except just keep playing.”

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 11:32 am
by George_g888
According to this article Journey will tour with Def Leppard again next summer.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:10 pm
by perryfan61
Maybe having 9 months away from each other will allow this drama to settle down.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2017 1:11 am
by annpea
perryfan61 wrote:Maybe having 9 months away from each other will allow this drama to settle down.

A break from each other could be just the thing they need, too much time together, and just plain tired from being on the road all the time. the older one gets the harder it is to maintain the hectic schedule of younger years, and it would indeed give them a chance to look at the big picture with clearer eyes.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:29 pm
by bellairepark73
annpea wrote:
perryfan61 wrote:Maybe having 9 months away from each other will allow this drama to settle down.

A break from each other could be just the thing they need, too much time together, and just plain tired from being on the road all the time. the older one gets the harder it is to maintain the hectic schedule of younger years, and it would indeed give them a chance to look at the big picture with clearer eyes.


All the best to them with that. This stuff has been brewing for awhile, ever since Neal openly talked about wanting to create new music (2011 was the last album and not too much was new) and Jon didn't want to. Now its bigger and deeper. This isn't just a simple misunderstanding...now we see the big picture of what Neal was trying to tell us without giving too much away.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 2:51 am
by SF-Dano
George_g888 wrote:According to this article Journey will tour with Def Leppard again next summer.


"Plans afoot", as the article states, is not exactly the same as "will" tour with DL. These issues may very well sideline or dismiss the "plans" for the tour.

I think they should take the next year off to decide if they even want to continue or work on an amicable break up/reformation.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 7:22 am
by FamilyMan
SF-Dano wrote:
George_g888 wrote:According to this article Journey will tour with Def Leppard again next summer.


"Plans afoot", as the article states, is not exactly the same as "will" tour with DL. These issues may very well sideline or dismiss the "plans" for the tour.

I think they should take the next year off to decide if they even want to continue or work on an amicable break up/reformation.


They have little or no choice. As Jon says, "Journey is our job. Journey pays the bills." They're stuck with each other.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 8:59 am
by Journey/Survivor
SF-Dano wrote:
George_g888 wrote:According to this article Journey will tour with Def Leppard again next summer.


"Plans afoot", as the article states, is not exactly the same as "will" tour with DL. These issues may very well sideline or dismiss the "plans" for the tour.

I think they should take the next year off to decide if they even want to continue or work on an amicable break up/reformation.


Unless Journey were to record a new album, I'd prefer Neal to do the "Neal Schon's JRNY" thing with Gregg Rolie and some other great musicians and record an album with Journey-like music, but heavier than most Journey albums.

I'm done with the Journey Greatest Hits shows.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:58 am
by scarab
Only a Rolie/Schon reunion would be a remotely reason for Journey to tour again.
Anything Cain involved, no way. Would love to see even Faithfully dropped from the setlist, but give him credit for writing it for his former porn star wife and than dedicate to his faith bilking wife.

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:50 pm
by lparn
Unless they're going to do revelation songs im done with greatest hits shows

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 11:12 pm
by bellairepark73
lparn wrote:Unless they're going to do revelation songs im done with greatest hits shows


Well we here say that but when a mistake was made that JRNY was going to have a show November 11, on Facebook, in a heartbeat over 100 people responded to it and were about ready to buy tickets! It didn't matter the lineup. Personally, I'm done unless its Gregg and Steve onstage again doing something OTHER than 12 GH. There are way more than 12 GH hits. Has anyone seen Neal's Twitter and Facebook lately? He seems to be promoting his beautiful Lady M guitar and his solo album Universe. Nothing about the blues project with John Waite or any collaboration with Gregg either. Am I missing anything?

Re: Ross Interview

PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:25 am
by JourneyHard
If Journey is going to tour with Def Leppard again, Journey needs to rock out with this set list.

1. Separate Ways
2. One More
3. Chain Reaction
4. Keep On Runnin'
5. La Do Da
6. Where Were You
7. Dixie Highway
8. Escape
9. Line Of Fire
10. Lay It Down
11. Edge Of The Blade
12. Stone In Love
13. Wheel In The Sky
14. Any Way You Want It
15. Don't Stop Believin'

I know they won't do this, but they have become a One Hit Wonder to the young people now. As long as they do Don't Stop Believ'n, the other 14 songs are filler to millenials.