Monday, September 18, 2017

Steve Perry

Origin: Hanford, California (USA)

Steve Perry
Steve Perry

Steve Perry [Street talk - 1984] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyricsStreet talk - 1984 (with lyrics)


- Synopsis

Born in 1949, Steve Perry played in several bands before joining Journey in 1977. The band achieved tremendous pop rock success with its 1981 album Escape, which featured the now-classic "Don't Stop Believin'." As the group's lead singer, Perry became one of the era's most famous singers. He also had some hits on his own, including "Oh Sherrie." Perry left Journey in 1987, and except for a brief reunion, he remains a solo artist.

Early Life

The son of Portuguese parents, Steve Perry grew up in California. He was around 10 years old when, during a car trip with his mother, he discovered his career path; after listening to Sam Cooke on the radio, the young Perry decided he wanted to be a singer.

While attending high school in Lemoore, California, Perry played drums in the marching band. He tried college for a while, performing in the choir, but eventually abandoned school for his musical dreams. Hoping to break into the business, he moved to Los Angeles for a time. There, he worked a number of jobs, including singing on commercials and serving as an engineer in a recording studio. All the while, Perry played with a number of different groups as a vocalist and drummer. He seemed to be on the edge of a breakthrough with the group Alien Project, when it suddenly disbanded—tragically, one of its members was killed in a car crash.

Rock Stardom

In 1977, Perry caught his big break, landing a gig as the vocalist for Journey, which began performing as a jazz rock group in the early 1970s, in San Francisco. With Perry on board, the band moved more toward mainstream rock, and began to see some chart success with the first album with Perry, 1978's Infinity. The band's ode to San Francisco, "Lights," became a minor hit as did "Wheel in the Sky" and "Anytime."

Journey broken into the Top 20 with "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'" on their next album, Evolution (1979). Buoyed by such hits as "Open Arms," "Who's Crying Now" and "Don't Stop Believin'," Escape (1981) became the band's first No. 1 album, selling more than 7 million copies. While the band was hugely popular with music fans, many critics were less than kind.

By the early 1980s, Journey had emerged as one of rock's top acts. Perry proved that while he may have been short in stature, he possessed one of the era's biggest and most versatile voices. He was equally adept at ballads, such as "Open Arms," and at rock anthems, such as "Any Way You Want It." Behind the scenes, Perry helped write these songs and many of the band's other hits. He penned their most enduring song "Don't Stop Believin'" with guitarist Neal Schon and keyboardist Jonathan Cain.

Journey continued to be one of the era's top-selling acts, with 1983's Frontiers. The album featured such songs as "Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)" and "Faithfully." To support the recording, the band undertook an extensive world tour. Around that time, Journey also became the first band to license their music and likenesses for a video game.

With 1986's Raised on Radio, Journey enjoyed another wave of success. However, Perry was ready to part ways with his band mates. Perry left the band in 1987 after the album tour. In a statement to People magazine, Perry explained: "I had a job burnout after 10 years in Journey. I had to let my feet hit the ground, and I had to find a passion for singing again." Perry was also struggling with some personal issues at the time; his mother had become very sick, and he spent much of his time caring for her before her death.

Perry reunited with Journey in 1996, for the reunion album Trial By Fire, which reached as high as the No. 3 on the album charts. But health problems soon sidelined the famous singer—a hip condition, which led to hip replacement surgery—and his band mates decided to continue on without him.

Solo Projects

While still with Journey, Perry released his first solo album Street Talk (1984). The recording sold more than 2 million copies, helped along by the hit single, "Oh Sherrie." Burnt out after splitting with Journey, Perry took some time out before working on his next project.

Nearly a decade later, Perry re-emerged on the pop-rock scene with 1994's For the Love of Strange Medicine. While the album was well-received—one ballad, "You Better Wait," was a Top 10 hit—Perry failed to reach the same level of success that he had previously enjoyed. In 1998, he provided two songs for the soundtrack of Quest for Camelot, an animated film. Perry also released Greatest Hits + Five Unreleased that same year.

Recent Years

While he has largely stayed out of the spotlight, Perry continues to be heard in movies and on television. His songs are often chosen for soundtracks, and Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" even played during the closing moments of the hit crime-drama series The Sopranos in 2007. In 2009, a cover version of the song was done for the hit high school musical show Glee, which introduced a new generation to Perry's work.

According to several reports, Perry began working on new material around 2010. He even built a studio in his home, which is located north of San Diego, California. "I'm finishing that room up and I've written a whole bunch of ideas and directions, all over the map, in the last two, three years," Perry told Billboard in 2012. But fans should not expect a tour when Perry finally does release some new songs—nor should anyone expect him to reunite with Journey any time soon. Perry has struggled with arthritis for years. While he has said that he is civil with his former bandmates, they have all moved on. "We really don't have a lot to say to each other, at this point," Perry has said. "We have certainly, for years now, gone our separate ways, and we're all living different lives."

In 2014, Perry broke from his self-imposed exile from the concert stage. He appeared with the Eels at several of their shows. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Perry explained that "I've done the 20-year hermit thing, and it's overrated." His return to performing "has to do with a lot of changes in my life, including losing my girlfriend a year ago and her wish to hear me sing again."

Regardless of what the future holds, Perry has already earned a place in rock history. Rolling Stone magazine named him one of music's top 100 singers. According to American Idol judge and former Journey bassist, Randy Jackson, Perry's voice is one of kind. "Other than Robert Plant, there's no singer in rock that even came close to Steve Perry," Jackson said. "The power, the range, the tone—he created his own style. He mixed a little Motown, a little Everly Brothers, a little Zeppelin." -


- Stephen Ray "Steve" Perry (born January 22, 1949) is an American singer, songwriter and record producer. He is best known as the lead singer of the rock band Journey during their most commercially successful periods from 1977 to 1987 and again from 1995 to 1998. Perry had a successful solo career between the mid-1980s and mid-1990s.

Perry's singing voice has garnered acclaim from prominent musical peers and publications; he has been called "The Voice", a moniker originally coined by friend and former chart peer Jon Bon Jovi. He ranks No. 76 on Rolling Stone Magazine's 100 Greatest Singers Of All Time and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Journey on April 7, 2017.

Early life

Stephen Ray Perry was born in Hanford, California, to Portuguese parents. Perry grew up interested in music, as his father, Raymond Perry (Pereira), was a vocalist and co-owner of radio station KNGS. On his 12th birthday, his mother, Mary Quaresma, presented her son with a gold eighth note pendant, which he still wears for good luck. When Perry was 12 years old, he heard Sam Cooke's song "Cupid" on his mother's car radio. It inspired Perry to become a singer.

His family moved to Lemoore, California, during Perry's teen years. He attended high school there, drumming in the marching band as well as in extracurricular bands. After graduation he attended College of the Sequoias, in Visalia, California, where he sang first tenor in the choir. Perry's mother continued to encourage his musical growth during that time.

In his early 20s, Perry moved to Sacramento to start a band with 16-year-old future music producer Scott Mathews, who co-wrote, played drums and guitar and sang. That band, Ice, wrote strong original material and were poised to "make it" in the music business. During the day in 1972 they recorded at the Record Plant studios in Los Angeles while Stevie Wonder recorded his Talking Book album by night. Upon returning to Sacramento, Ice disbanded as the band had no management, Mathews was still in high school, and the recordings went virtually unheard. In 1975, Perry moved to Thousand Oaks, California, where he formed a progressive rock band called Pieces with Tim Bogert (who had previously worked with Jeff Beck), Denver Cross, and Eddie Tuduri. After a year and a half, the group was unable to secure a record deal and disbanded.

Perry then ended up in Banta, California, outside of Tracy, California, where he fronted the band Alien Project in his mid-20s. He nearly gave up music when the bassist of that band, Richard Michaels, was killed in an automobile accident. Perry returned to Lemoore and decided not to continue his singing career, but at the urging of his mother, Perry answered a call from Walter "Herbie" Herbert, manager of struggling San Francisco-based band Journey.

Journey era

Original Journey organizer/manager Walter "Herbie" Herbert had been given a demo of an Alien Project song, "If You Need Me, Call Me", and was told by producer Scott Mathews that the young singer would be a great replacement for then current frontman Robert Fleischman. Fleischman had never signed with Herbert's company, preferring his previous manager and he had not fully coalesced with the band's then progressive rock style. Perry was brought on tour and to avoid alarming Fleischman, Perry was clandestinely included as roadie "John Villanueva's Portuguese cousin" and on the tour during a sound check in Long Beach surreptitiously performed a song with Journey while Fleischman was away from the stage, and after that Herbert informed the band members of the lineup change.

Perry brought a radically new, more pop-influenced style sense to the band's music, despite some grumblings from his new bandmates and fans of Journey's former progressive rock sound. He made his public debut on October 28, 1977 in San Francisco to a mixed reception. Perry eventually won over new fans on his first album with the group, Infinity, which included a song he wrote called "Lights." The band's style had changed dramatically, but as Journey began to garner radio airplay and media buzz over Infinity, Perry's arrival was fully accepted.

Steve Perry provided lead vocals on nine of Journey's albums: Infinity (1978), Evolution (1979), Departure (1980), Dream, After Dream (1980, a Japanese movie soundtrack), Captured (1980, a live album), Escape (1981, which reached No. 1 on the Billboard chart), Frontiers (1983), Raised on Radio (1986), and Trial By Fire (1996). The single "Open Arms" from Escape was their biggest hit single, charting at No. 2 for six weeks on the Billboard Hot 100. Perry had become the unmistakable voice of Journey.

During his Journey tenure, Perry also sang backing vocals on several Sammy Hagar songs, including the 1980 tracks "The Iceman" (a nickname Hagar had for Scott Mathews) and "Run For Your Life", and duetting with Kenny Loggins on the 1982 No. 17 hit single "Don't Fight It". Perry also worked with other musicians including Sheena Easton, Clannad, and Jon Bon Jovi during the height of his career. A 1983 Gallup poll of people between the ages of 13 and 25 voted Journey their favorite rock band.

In 1984, following the release of Frontiers and the tour supporting this effort, Perry released his first solo album, Street Talk (the album's title was derived from the original name of Perry's earlier band Alien Project). The record sold more than 2 million units, scoring the hit singles No. 3 "Oh Sherrie", written for his then-girlfriend Sherrie Swafford, and No. 18 "Foolish Heart". The music video for "Oh Sherrie" saw heavy rotation on MTV. "She's Mine" and "Strung Out" were also released as singles from this project, which featured former Alien Project drummer Craig Krampf on a few tracks, guitarist Michael Landau, and future American Idol judge Randy Jackson on bass, among others.

In 1985, Perry was one of 21 singers in the USA for Africa all-star benefit song "We Are the World". He also recorded a song, "If Only For the Moment, Girl" for the We Are the World album. This song was added to the reissue of his album Street Talk. Also during this period Perry worked with the Irish folk-rock group Clannad on their 1987 album Sirius.

While Perry was reuniting with Journey, his mother became ill. The recording of Raised on Radio, which Perry was producing, was stop-and-go as he frequently returned to the San Joaquin Valley to visit his mother (who died during the production of the album). It took a major toll on Journey to have intermittent recording sessions and a vocalist who was not with the band much of the time. Eventually, as Perry later said, he was "toast" (exhausted from the ordeal). Journey then disbanded in 1987 after the Raised on Radio tour.

In 1988, Perry began to work on another solo album, Against the Wall, which he ultimately left unfinished (though several of the songs that were recorded for Against the Wall would appear on Perry's 1998 solo compilation, Greatest Hits + Five Unreleased). A year later, on April 30, 1989, at the Shoreline Amphitheatre, in Mountain View, CA, Perry joined Bon Jovi to perform Sam Cooke's "Bring It On Home to Me" and the Four Tops' "Reach Out". He would also reunite with Journey at the Bill Graham tribute concert, "Laughter, Love and Music" on November 3, 1991, at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, performing "Faithfully" and "Lights". Other than those three events, however, Perry mostly disappeared from the public eye for seven years, taking a break from the music industry.

1994 to 1998

In 1994 Perry released For the Love of Strange Medicine, his second solo effort. The album was successful, partly due to the Strange Medicine world tour.

Journey's classic 1981–85 lineup reunited in 1996 to record Trial by Fire. The album was a huge success, entering the Billboard charts at No. 3 and going platinum before year's end, but its triumph was short-lived. Before the Trial By Fire tour could begin, Perry suffered a hip injury while hiking in Hawaii and was unable to perform. Perry was diagnosed with a degenerative bone condition and a hip replacement was required, and as he was reluctant to rush into the surgery, Perry wanted to postpone the tour.

Meanwhile, long-time Journey drummer Steve Smith resigned. (Smith had rejoined, along with original Journey bassist Ross Valory.)

The remaining members waited until 1998, nearly 17 months after Perry's injury, before making a decision on Journey's future. Growing impatient and realizing the window of opportunity was closing to follow up the success of the platinum-selling Trial By Fire LP with a world tour, Journey members Jonathan Cain and Neal Schon met with Perry and presented an ultimatum that he either undergo hip replacement surgery so the tour could proceed upon his recovery, or a replacement singer would be hired. Perry, still hesitant to undergo surgery and now apparently upset at his bandmates' intractability and their perceived meddling in personal health decisions, decided to leave Journey. Perry's lead vocal duties were later taken over by Steve Augeri of Tall Stories, and nearly two years after the album's initial release, Journey began its long-postponed tour.

Perry underwent successful hip replacement surgery in 1998 to correct the problem he had been diagnosed with two years earlier. He released the Greatest Hits + Five Unreleased compilation album later in 1998; the unreleased tracks included an original Alien Project demo as well as selections from the abandoned Against the Wall CD. Also in 1998, Perry recorded two songs for the Warner Bros. film Quest for Camelot, which can be found on the motion picture's soundtrack. Journey was the subject of an episode of VH1's Behind the Music in 2001, where Perry made the statement that he "never really felt like [he] was part of the band," to which former manager Herbie Herbert reacted saying "that's like the Pope saying he never really felt Catholic."

In the 21st century

Perry collaborated with musician Jeff Golub on a song titled "Can't Let You Go" for Golub's Soul Sessions album which was released in 2003. Perry provided vocals on the mostly instrumental jazz track. Golub described his encounter with Perry: “…he (Perry) dropped by the studio one day. When Steve Perry heard the track for 'Can't Let You Go,' he said, 'I can easily picture a vocal on that song.' So we immediately set up a mic and said 'Let's do it.'"

Perry appeared with other Journey members at a ceremony on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on January 21, 2005, after previously stating it was unlikely that he would ever stand with the band again. He indicated that, though it was a good experience, his rejoining Journey is not likely. However, he has also stated "[n]ever say never, unless you mean never, nevertheless" when the issue of returning to Journey has been mentioned.

In 2005, Perry produced "The Secret of Moving On," a track on a solo album for former Ambrosia lead vocalist David Pack. Perry also provided background vocals for "A Brand New Start," among the many songs he and Pack co-wrote shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks. That album released in September 2005 includes covers of two of Pack's biggest hits with Ambrosia, "Biggest Part of Me" and "You're the Only Woman." During the 2005 baseball season, the Chicago White Sox adopted Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" as their unofficial team anthem. As a result, Perry (an avid San Francisco Giants fan) was asked to attend the World Series and even traveled with the White Sox to Houston where Perry joined the players on the field and in the locker room as they celebrated their championship.

In late 2006, Perry's two solo projects, Street Talk and For the Love of Strange Medicine (both featuring previously unreleased material), and his Greatest Hits CD were remastered and re-released. Sony Legacy released Playlist: The Very Best of Steve Perry on January 13, 2009.

As a San Francisco Giants fan, Perry was spotlighted during their 2010 World Championship run. He was spotted in game 5 of the NLCS leading the crowd in a singalong of "Don't Stop Believin'". In the eighth inning of the second game of the 2010 World Series in San Francisco, fans at AT&T Park began singing along to the song "Lights" by Journey. Perry was shown on the scoreboard singing, jumping and pumping up the crowd. The Giants went on to win 9–0 over the Texas Rangers. In 2014, Perry was observed leading AT&T Park in a chorus of "Don't Stop Believin'".

In an interview with Classic Rock Presents AOR, released in December 2010, Perry revealed that he had written many new songs and was contemplating his first solo project since 1994. "A little over a year and a half ago, I felt I could maybe come back to it, I have been writing. I have about 50 songs in a little over a year. I never thought I would do it again, but I decided to open up that room and see what I could find. It's been interesting. Some of it sounds familiar, some of it sounds contemporary, some of it you can't put a label on—and I've never been big on labels anyway." Perry is reluctant however to put a timescale on his return. "I'll be honest, I don't really know how to do that, but I can definitely smell a solo project on the horizon. I will be recording some music."

During the 2012 Giants versus Tigers World Series in San Francisco at AT&T Park, Perry was shown on the scoreboard singing along to "Lights" once again.

In May 2013 Perry had a mole removed that turned out to be melanoma. He had two surgeries to remove the cancer cells and was told the surgeries were successful, requiring no further treatment. In a lengthy blog post in June, Perry wrote that he fell in love with psychologist and breast cancer survivor Kellie Nash, who died from cancer in December 2012, and that he himself suffered a recent cancer scare. Perry was by Nash's side as she battled cancer.

On May 25, 2014, Perry joined the indie rock band Eels onstage at the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul, Minnesota, for the final three songs of their encore, singing Eels' "It's a Motherfucker" followed by Journey's "Open Arms" and "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'". This marked the first time he had performed on stage since the end of his Strange Medicine world tour in 1995. Perry performed with The Eels again May 31 at the Lincoln Theater in Washington, D.C., singing the same three songs previously sung in St. Paul, MN plus a cover of Sam Cooke's "Only Sixteen." Perry joined the Eels a third time June 11 at L.A.'s Orpheum Theater. In addition to the same three songs previously performed, he added the Journey hit 'Lights' explaining to the audience that he wrote the song originally for L.A., but after receiving a call to join Journey, the song was changed to say 'city by the Bay'.

In December 2015, Perry announced that he was completing a new album, which he stated was to be released in 2016. In April 2017, Perry announced that a new solo LP will be released later in the year. Perry describes the new album as a “cathartic” and “emotional expression” about the loss of a loved one. The as-yet-untitled record will be Perry's third proper studio work – and first since For the Love of Strange Medicine (1994).

On the 7th April, 2017, Steve Perry appeared alongside his ex-bandmates of Journey for the first time since 2005, to be introduced in Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, held at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Vocal style and acclaim

Perry's singing has garnered acclaim from prominent musical peers and publications. Queen guitarist Brian May said: "Perry is a truly luminous singer, in my opinion—a voice in a million. And if anyone knows a great singer, it's me." Sony record executive, former American Idol judge, record producer, and former Journey band member Randy Jackson described Perry's as "the golden voice," and opined that, "Other than Robert Plant, there's no singer in rock that even came close to Steve Perry." "The power, the range, the tone—he created his own style. He mixed a little Motown, a little Everly Brothers, a little Zeppelin."

Greg Prato of AllMusic wrote: "If only one singer could be selected as the most identifiable with '80s arena rock, it would have to be Journey's Steve Perry." Colleague John Franck praised Perry's as a "soaring, whale of a voice." He was voted among the ten greatest rock singers of all time in a 2009 Classic Rock reader poll. Rolling Stone ranked Perry No. 76 in "The 100 Greatest Singers of All Time," reflecting the magazine's editorial opinion. They lauded his "technical skills," as well as his "pure tone and passionate sincerity."

Sam Cooke, to whom Perry has been compared, was Perry's primary influence. -


- On January 22, 1949 in Hanford, California, a small rural town located in the San Joaquin Valley, Mary C. (nee: Quaresma) Perry (Perriera) and Raymond F. Perry welcome into the world their only child - a son whom they named Stephen Ray Perry. Stephen Ray Perry was born at 6:05 p.m. at Kings County General Hospital. As an infant Mary's parents, Steve’s grandparents, left the island of Pico in the Azores Archipelago of Portugal with their daughter in their arms as they came through Ellis Island. Steve became the first Portuguese family member to be born in America. At 6 months of age Steve was baptized at the Heart of Mary Church of Hanford. Steve grew up fluent in both Portuguese and English as well as being a very energetic child. Steven recalled that early in his life at the age of three he knew that music was inside of him and that he and music were meant to be together. Both Mary and Raymond were singers and Steve remembers as a small child sitting with his grandmother as he watched his parents in a musical play and listened to his father sing knowing that is what he wanted to do: sing on stage and make others feel the music.

Mary and Raymond made their home in Hanford where Steve attended school. Although Steve admits he was not an attentive student his mom said he was “born in a hurry.” The call of the road was too much for Raymond and when Steve was eight years old - he left - which was a devastating blow to Steve. Without the presence of his father, Steve still had the support of his mother and his grandfather, Manuel Quaresma, who became a very big influence in his life. It was then he turned fully to music. “When I was 8 my father left and he was everything to me. Music saved my life and it continues to do so.” It was the San Joaquin Valley and Hanford and where he came from that Stephen credits for inspiring his love for music, and for his musical exposure and history. “I would as a kid sit and listen to anything on the radio I was so obsessed with music.”

It was when Steve turned 14 that his mom met and married Marv Rottman and the family moved to the nearby town of Lemoore. Marv along with Mary continued to encourage Steve’s musical talents. Steve's boyhood interest in music was fueled when he received a drum kit from his bookkeeper mom Mary. While growing up Steve was in many groups: The Nocturnes, Dollar Bills, Sullies, Pieces and eventually, Alien Project. Steve attended Lemoore High School where he was on the track team in the band, announcement committee, talent show and in the rally club. As Steve was in high school it was his mother Mary who managed the many bands and drove them to their performances. While Steve was with the Sullies as drummer and singer they competed with 80 other bands in the Calavaras County Battle of Bands and won. They also received the chance to play at the Hollywood Bowl promoted by the legendary Bill Graham. The Sullies met with a little success when they recorded an album that was distributed locally. It was not long after that the Sullies disbanded. While driving his mother’s 1957 Ford Thunderbird in Pismo Beach Steve heard a voice and a song that would change his life forever. That was when Steve first heard Sam Cooke sing Cupid.
After Steve graduated from Lemoore High School in 1967, he would attend the College of the Sequoias in Visalia California. While there Steve took part in the choir, band and speech classes. Steve became first tenor in the choir and believes that the experience and training he received helped to shape his voice. Steve wanted to try and pursue a career as a DJ and went to San Francisco to take the F.C.C. test. In 1968 when Privilege was in Bakersfield recording at Gary Paxton’s studio while Steve Perry was playing drums with a band called Chocolate Tunnel who were also recording there at the same time. Steve apparently liked Privilege and started hanging with them. After the recording was done Steve traveled with Privilege (in a non-player role) to Hollywood where Privilege opened for Ike and Tina Turner at PJs Club and other So-Cal gigs.
It was his hunger to sing and make others feel the music that after 2 years of college he decided to move to L.A. to pursue his career in music. As Steve moved to L.A. he started to get involved with rock bands and found that his ambitions and motivations were not the same as those he encountered. Steve wanted to make music and make musical statements while they wanted to party. While down and out in L.A. Steve needed to pay the bills and took a job at Crystal Studio’s as a second engineer. “It kept me alive for a while but found out it was taking time away from what I was doing musically. I got a lot of exposure as to what was going on and I thought that was better than nothing. I felt like I was sort of spinning my wheels so I got out.” “When I was younger my parent’s were mad at me because I never learned how to write or read music.”
In 1974 Andy Krawchuk from Privilege invited Steve to come join Privilege and Steve came up to Edmonton where they started rehearsals for an Eastern Canada tour. Steve shared drumming duties with drummer John Hannah as well as sharing vocal duties with then lead singer Randy Broadhead. They did some warm up gigs in western Canada including Edmonton with stops in Saskatchewan and Manitoba as they worked their way eastward. Craig Krampft with the help of Steve in 1977 formed a group called Alien Project. It was not long when Chrysalis and Columbia came knocking and wanted to sign the group to their label. Tragically, on July 4th 1977 on the eve of Alien Project’s recording contract signing, their bassist, Richard Michaels, died in a car accident. This event hit Steve hard and he felt the band had a special magic and should not continue on without him and it was then that Steve decided to take a break from the music.

During Steve’s musical absence he returned home to the San Joaquin Valley. Short on money Steve considered his options and took a job with his stepfather Marv building sheds on a turkey ranch. “I learned how important it is to take pride in your work and learned a lot about working with my hands.” Steve confessed. With the loving unconditional support of his mother Mary, Steve decided to give music another try. Alien Project’s demo tape and the song If You Need Me Call Me worked it’s way into the hands of Journey’s then manager Herbie Herbert.

When Gregg Rollie and Neal Schon left the famous group Santana; they formed in 1973 a group which they named Journey. Steve who had met Neal Schon in 1976 before Alien Project got together asked if they needed a lead singer. Determined that Journey was an instrumental outfit they declined the offer. After hearing the Alien Project demo Herbie Herbert insisted that Steve was joining the band and told the members to “Get used to it.” It was Gregg Rollie who made the call asking Steve to join him and Neal in writing some tunes together. Steve contemplating what to do he asked his grandfather Manuel Quaresma what he should do about joining Journey on the road. “He said ya know, I don’t know much about this music business you’re in, but these Journey guys, I think they have jobs, and you need a job,” he told Steve. So for one week Steve joined Journey on the road where he and Neal wrote the song Patiently. After traveling with the band for several months, Herbie Herbert asked Steve to join the band, ousting Robert Fleischman their current lead singer.

On October 1978 in Racine Wisconsin Steve stepped out on stage and performed Patiently. It was those sweet notes from the Infinity tour that changed Rock and Roll forever and changed the course of a band named Journey. The Infinity tour broke stadium attendance records and for the very first time launched Journey into the music world with the desired radio play they had so wanted and needed. Steve Perry’s tenor voice and very impressive vocal range would lead Journey into a successful reign that would grow with each new Journey album release. In 1979 Evolution was released continuing where Infinity left off. Evolution became a great success garnishing Journey with it’s first Top 20 Hit Lovin’ Touchin’ Squeezin’ - a song that was based on Steve’s personal experience of a love that had gone wrong. “She was out doing the wild thing.” Steve commented on Behind the Music. With the mark of Evolution came the departure of Aynsley Dunbar and the recruitment of Steve Smith, who had more of a concept of playing behind a vocalist. 1980 completed the line up. Departure gave way to the live Captured Album and with that came Gregg Rollie’s announcement to retire. It was then that ex-Baby’s keyboard player Jonathan Cain was brought aboard to replace Rollie.

Steve and Jonathan began writing together and a partnership was formed. While driving to San Francisco from Bakersfield Steve got the idea for Who’s Crying Now and sang the chorus into a tape recorder. Going right to Jon’s house he and Steve finished the song that afternoon. Jon and Steve worked on another song that Jonathan Cain had written while in the Baby’s titled Open Arms. When the song was finished it almost did not make the Escape album. Neal hated the song and the band was opposed to ballad’s. Needless to say Open Arms did make the Escape album. The Escape album was to become the first and only of Journey’s albums to go to #1 on the American charts. After a successful tour with the Escape album Journey returned to the studios to produce Frontiers. Frontiers garnished Journey with more hits which included songs Faithfully and Separate Ways and the success of the video Frontiers and Beyond.

It was after the success of Frontiers that Steve and the band started to feel cracks in the relationship. The many years of touring and being together were starting to show and the band took a lengthy break from each other. The members worked on other solo projects and Steve took this time to do his own solo project. In 1984 Steve took the opportunity to record his own solo album titled Street Talk. After six months in April 1984 Street Talk was released. The songs on the album were more of a personal and romantic level and had that Motown feel that Steve wanted on this album. Oh Sherrie became an instant hit climbing to #3 on the charts and was a song written about his relationship with long time girlfriend at the time Sherrie Swafford. After the release of Street Talk work began for Steve on another solo album which was to be titled Against the Wall. With Steve’s duties to return back to Journey and changes in the music business the project was dropped. While on hiatus from Journey in 1984-85 Steve was asked to join other artists in the high profile USA for Africa Project and not only was honored with being a soloist on the song but also contributed a song that would be the flip side of the We Are The World single. It was something that affected Steve deeply.

In 1985 his long term relationship with girlfriend Sherrie Swafford became troubled and his mother Mary was diagnosed with a very serious neurological illness. Steve would fly and spend weekends with his mother as he contemplated whether to go on with Journey. His mother who could hardly speak whispered the words Journey and Steve fulfilled his promise to his mother and returned to Journey. On December 4th 1985 Mary Quaresma Perry Rottman passed away. Steve’s biggest fan was gone.

It was not until 1986 that Journey completed Raised on Radio with many new changes. Steve Smith and Ross Valory were let go during the making of the album a decision that Steve feels should not have been made “Having had these circumstances in front of me today, knowing what I know now, I wouldn’t have done it. “ On April 21st 1986, Raised on Radio was released and a slimmed down Journey with Randy Jackson and Michael Baird embarked on a tour in August of 1986. After continuing conflicts and personal problems in Steve’s life he decided that he could not continue and broke the news to Jon and Neal who Steve felt did not understand at the time. After the Anchorage, Alaska show Journey slowly disappeared without any explanation or even a fond farewell, leaving fans wondering what happened. Steve returned to San Francisco and the Bay Area in 1987 for the Bay Area Music wards to see Michael Bolton perform with Journey before slipping back out of the public eye.

For two years Steve did not listen to or write music. He went back to his life. Taking this opportunity, Steve dealt with family tragedies and rekindled friendships again. It was his time to find his life and find himself. “For the first year I did not write music or even listen to it and I didn’t sing because I had nothing to sing about.” Steve commented. “I just hung out with friends and tried to re-enter my life again. Finally after two years I started to write again and record music again and the years went by and I just had to stay away,” commented Perry. During this time as Steve started to feel the hunger of writing again he began working with many artists which included Nuno Bettencourt and ex-David Lee Roth guitarist Jason Becker. It was not until the death of Bill Graham and a memorial concert in his honor in 1991 that Steve and Journey would once again perform together on the same stage as they performed Lights and Faithfully. That would be the last time Journey would perform together until 1996.

The need to write and create his own music was coming back to Steve once more and he was feeling the motivation again. “What finally made me make a record was that I realized that I am what I am and went back to what I am and did not let anything steer me away for that.” Steve said. Cyndi Poon (Fan Asylum) put Steve in touch with ex-Winger guitarist Paul Taylor. “Don’t you have anything better to do like write a song? Call Paul Taylor he wants to write with you.” Cyndi told Steve. Steve made the call to Paul. It was Randy Jackson who put Steve in touch with Lincoln Brewster after hearing that Steve was looking for a guitarist. While rehearsing for drummers Moyes Lucus Jr. knocked on the door and asked for an audition to play. After hearing Moyes play they started jamming and writing a song. That is when the birth of For the Love Strange Medicine was born. Stephen’s second solo album with the Strange Medicine Band. The lyrics on this new CD were all about truthful experiences and things that were going on in Steve’s life. Steve paid respect and talk about his side of the insanity with his ex-band mates in the touching song Anyway that was included on the CD. It was Steve’s way of expressing what was going on from his side of things and might have been one of the key factor’s that helped reunited the band years later.

While Steve was touring with the Strange Medicine band in 1994-95 John Kalodner (JDK), Sony’s Senior Vice President of A&R, started to contact the members of Journey in the hopes of a reconciliation. With John’s coaxing and influence, luck was on his side and the members of Journey agreed to meet. Steve was missing the feel of being with Journey and singing with the guys that he agreed to contact Jon Cain who then contacted Neal Schon. “The song writing was still there it was instantaneous” Steve Smith recalled. Ross Vallory and Steve were brought back to reunite the Journey lineup everyone had known. Long time manager Herbie Herbert was let go and Irving Azoff was hired on as Journey’s new manager. John Kalodner introduced to Journey producer Kevin Shirley and Trial By Fire was made. “We joked with each other that the good news is, not a lot has changed and the bad news is not a lot has changed.” Steve recalled. Trial By Fire hit the US charts at #3 garnishing Journey another top 10 album and a song that was Grammy material. The single When You Love A Woman was nominated for a Grammy; something Journey never had before in their musical career. “I was actually dancing around my house. I couldn’t believe it.” Steve said. Talks of tour ensued but Steve’s own reservations of a long term Journey were evident. While getting ready for a tour Steve took some time and went to Hawaii. While on a hike he developed some health issues that eventually stopped the band in it’s tracks and halted a tour. “I was coming down the mountain and I was experiencing excruciating pain.” Steve said. After seeing a series of doctors it was determined that Steve had a degenerative condition that affected his hip. Trying to avoid surgery Steve and his doctors tried to find a cure which took time. Something Journey did not feel they had.

Unfortunately Neal and Jon wanted to continue on and asked Steve to allow them to go on with a new line up. “Don’t crack the stone! Don’t fracture the name Journey.” Steve appealed to them. It was then that Steve Augeri replaced Steve Perry as lead singer of Journey.

In 1998 Steve had the surgery on his hip that he and his doctors had hoped to avoid years before. Soon after that came the release of Greatest Hit’s + 5. Introducing the fans to some unreleased material (that was to be contained in his second solo album after Street Talk which was not to be) that was suppose to be the Against the Wall album. Steve also lent his singing vocals to the Quest for Camelot animated movie as King Arthur singing the song I Stand Alone. Steve in 2002 worked with Tommy Tokioka and Laid Law featuring Nikki Sixx lending his vocals to the single I Wish You Were Mine from Tommy’s CD Happy To Be Living and Send My Baby Home a single from Laid Law’s First Big Picnic CD. While visiting his friend drummer Steve Ferrone in 2003 Stephen once again lent his vocal’s to Jeff Galoub’s song Can’t Let You Go which was released on Jeff’s new CD Soul Sessions. “I’ve got Steve Perry singing on my album, how cool is that?” Jeff Galoub stated.

2003 had Steve working once again with John Kalodner on the release of a musical DVD for Journey fans featuring the classic line up. The DVD would contain classic Journey video footage. Journey’s Greatest Hit’s DVD 1978-1997 which was released on Nov. 25, 2003 and has since gone platinum without any publicity at all but by word of mouth by the faithful fans. Later on in 2003 through his attorney, Steve received a letter from Actress Charlize Theron asking for permission to use the song Don’t Stop Believing in a new movie directed and written by Patty Jenkins titled Monster. After getting in touch with Patty Jenkins, Steve got the okay and permission from Neal and Jon and the song Don’t Stop Believing was added to the movie and soundtrack. Steve was invited to L.A. to watch them dub in the song to the movie and from time to time Patty would ask Steve what he thought about pre-recorded music in the film “So I presented her with many options from different artists past and present. I really enjoyed participating in this side of the project.” Steve said. “Later on Patty had insisted on giving me Music Consultant Credit. I was stunned.” Said Perry. Since the release of the movie Monster Steve has lent his support to the film by appearing at the L.A. and New York Premiers for the movie in Dec. 2003 and January 2004. On Nov. 21, 2003 Stephen paid Arrow FM and Uncle Joe Benson a visit and joined Uncle Joe Benson in the studio live on air for one hour. In Dec. 2003 Uncle Joe’s radio program Off the Record featured a new one on one interview with Steve where he talked about life, Journey, the movie Monster and the new DVD that had been released.

2004 saw Steve not only at the New York Premier for the movie Monster but also at the American Film Institute's Salute to Meryl Streep where the AFI honored film director Patty Jenkins. Steve still leads a private life below the radar in 2005. Perry will be working with John Kalodner on another Journey DVD, the Houston Summit, which will be released in 2005.

On January 21, 2005, Journey was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. A ceremony was planned with speeches and hundreds of fans in attendance. Also in attendance was Steve Perry - much to the surprise and complete joy of everyone. Steve led his former band mates in thanking the fans for their love and support.

October of 2005 Steve Perry experienced every man’s dream when he was invited to attend Game One of the World Series with the Chicago White Sox.  Steve Perry became their good luck charm  and Journey’s hit “Don’t Stop Believin‘” became there anthem.  Steve Perry then had the honorable privilege of being asked to help the Chicago White Sox celebrate in Chicago and was asked by the team mates to sing “Don’t Stop Believin” to a Chicago crowd of thousands as they welcomed home there World Series Champion Chicago White Sox.

In the fall of 2006 Street Talk, For the Love of Strange Medicine and Greatest Hit’s + 5 Steve’s solo works were re-mastered and contained some previously unreleased material.

On June 10, 2007 the Soprano’s Season 6 final episode “Made In America” aired.  As the pictured faded to black Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’” ended the long running HBO series after 6 seasons.  David Chase got the okay from Neal Schon and Jon Cain and needed the okay from Steve Perry.  Steve held out till the last moment wanting to know how the song was going to be used in the show’s finale.  After swearing not to reveal the show’s ending David Chase explained how the song was going to be used.  It was then a 3 days for the airing of the finale that Steve Perry gave his okay for “Don’t Stop Believin’” to be used.  Steve Perry in August of 2007 produced Guff’s album Symphony of Voices which was released by Go-Kart records and featured the unreleased Journey song “I Can See It In Your Eyes.” Steve Perry’s voice is also on the track.

September 24, 2008 Steve Perry made a telephone appearance on the Dennis Miller radio show.

On July 20, 2009 on the Canadian Broadcasting Centre (CBC) radio one Jian Ghomeshi host of the show “Q” interviewed Steve Perry by phone on the longevity of “Don’t Stop Believin’”.  While during the interview Steve Perry talked of writing again….rumors are afloat that new music from Steve Perry will be forthcoming soon.  These are just rumors as Steve Perry has yet to confirm this publicly.

In February 2010 Steve was interviewed by U.K. radio station Planet Rock.  in October of 2010 Steve talked sports and the SF Giants on KNBR 680 sports radio in San Francisco. 2010 turned out to be a great year for Steve and his San Francisco Giants as they won the World Series.  Steve joined the San Francisco Giants in November as San Francisco threw them a parade.  Before the parade Steve was interviewed by ESPN on how he felt about the Giants winning the World Series.   Steve was overjoyed with much emotion as he talked about the San Francisco Giants.

In 2011 Steve worked on the long awaited Journey’s Greatest Hits 2 the follow up to Journey’s Greatest Hits 1.  On May 2011 Steve was with Patty Jenkins as she was editing a Lifetime Channel breast cancer special called "Five."  It was during the open scenes that Steve saw her smile.  Steve asked Patty to scroll back so that he could see her smile again.  It was then that Steve had found her…the love he had waited all his life for Kellie.

The beginning of 2012 started off with another great achievement when in Jannuary  of 2012 Steve and the members of Journey received a plaque stating that"Don't Stop Believin" was the biggest selling classic rock digital download track!  To help raise money for Parkinson Disease Steve auctioned off autographed albums on Ebay.  Steve was interviewed by Don Mandis for 850 KOA news radio.  In February Steve played guest DJ sharing his playlist on San Diego’s 100.3 The Sound.  Steve visited Rob Thomas of Match Box 20 in the studio.  March Steve attended the Grammy rehearsals and Steve lent his background vocals to Cassidy Catanzaro song “Follow theFreedom” from her recent album Boheme.  Steve Perry who keeps under the radar still maintains a busy life that he so enjoy’s. In December of 2013 tragedy and heartache struck Steve when he lost his girlfriend of 1 ½ years to cancer.

2013 saw Steve out and about in studio’s with friends and attending the premiere for the movie Pain and Gain in Los Angeles.  Steve also visited the set of the TV show See Dad Run.  Steve was also asked to participate in photographer’s Christopher Ameruoso’s book Shades of Elvis.  In September Steve attended the City of Hope Gala to raise money for cancer and also donated autographed items to the event which raised a lot of money.  Steve had his own cancer scare when a routine mole was taken off his face and after testing was melanoma skin cancer.  After 2 surgeries to remove all the skin cancer Steve was now cancer free.

As 2014 came it had been 20 years since Steve had been on stage or even sang live that fans got a surprise of a lifetime when Steve joined good friend Steve Ferrone on stage at the Guitar Center Drum Off finals in Los Angeles and sang the classic song “Pick Up The Pieces”.  Steve attended the Need for Speed movie premiere In Los Angeles.   Steve was also in attendance at Beverly Hills Lawyer of the Year Award where his long time attorney Lee Philips was honored.   Fans got the moment of lifetime when after 20 years Steve finally returned to the stage briefly as he joined the group the Eels on stage in St. Paul Mn., Washington D.C. and Los Angeles where he sang  Lights, the Eels song It’s a Mother F*****, Open Arms  and Lovin’ Touchin’ Squeezin’ .    It has been 20 years since Steve took to the stage to sing and once he got his music feet grounded he gave his fans the performance of his life and proved once again that he still had the music deep within his heart.  After all those years his fans were still there waiting…welcoming him home with open arms as Steve himself was once again Home.
2015 has seen Steve doing what he loves to do; enjoying life and rooting for his beloved San Francisco Giants. In early April Steve was present at the San Diego Padres ball park to root for the San Francisco Giants on opening day. His presence that day was captured in images and featured in the USA Todays Sports Images. On the Giants opening day in San Francisco at AT&T Park Steve did a 10 minute interview with Buster Olney for ESPN radio. Since then Steve has beeen out and about enjoying his life on his terms attending small events and meetings fans by chance.
In December 2015 Steve called into radio station KSWD-FM in Los Angeles to wish Uncle Joe Benson happy birthday as he (Uncle Joe Benson) was at the radio station. While chatting Steve announced that he spent much of 2015 in the studio recording new material, while joking he has been in the studio for years.  "The truth is, I finally went into the studio in March, and I've been in there ever since, just trying to finish this record. I'm looking forward to finishing it, put it that way. I want to get it done probably in the early part of this coming year." Perry said in a chat with KSWD-FM in Los Angeles.
In October 2016 Journey fans heard the news that they had been waiting for; Journey was on the ballot for the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame.  This year once again the Hall of Fame would offer fans the opportunity to officially participate in the induction selection process as fans were allowed to cast their votes for Journey.  Steve told the fans that he was so grateful that the music they created while together had survived the test of time.  December brought the fans the greatest news Journey was going to be inducted into the Hall of Fame in April 7, 2017.  Steve expressed how truly grateful he was that Journey was being inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame.
April 2017 came with speculation as to whether Steve would attend the ceremonies as there was no cofirmation as of March 2017.  On April 7, 2017 the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony was history in the making as Steve Perry welcomed Neal Schon in a hugged embrace onto the stage as Gregg Rollie, Ansley Dunbar, Steve Smith, Ross Valory and Jon Cain also came to the stage to thank the fans and those who helped them along the way.  Steve in his speech said while living in Los Angels there was one instrument that was flying above the entire city of Los Angels and that was the magic fingers of Neal Schon's guitar.  Steve also thanked former Journey manager Herbie Herbert for believing in him. Steve also thanked his former band mates for the music they made and thanked current lead singer Arnel Pineda for keeping the music alive and thanked many others instrumental in his career with Journey including Fan Asylum.  Steve then thanked the fans for their tireless love and consistant devotion.  "From my heart, I must tell you, I must tell you...I've been gone a long time I understand that but I want you to know that you have never not been in my heart, I want you to know that and I love each and every one of you.  Thank you so very much!" Steve expressed to the fans ending his speech.
For Steve Perry this one thing remains constant: his love for music, the fans and Sam Cooke.
Mary’s little boy who was born in such a hurry has fulfilled his musical dream and his promise to his mother continues. -


- If only one singer could be selected as the most identifiable with '80s arena rock, it would have to be Journey's Steve Perry. Born Stephen Ray Perry in Hanford, CA, on January 22, 1949 (to Portuguese parents), Perry was raised in another California town, Lemoore, during which time he worked at his stepfather's turkey ranch. But by the age of 18, Perry wanted to try and fulfill his rock & roll dreams, so he relocated to Los Angeles. The singer paid the bills by lending his vocals to radio and TV advertisements, as well as working as an engineer at Crystal Studios. In addition to singing, Perry was also a drummer and involved in several different bands during the '60s/'70s, including such obscure local acts as the Nocturns, Dollar Bills, Sullies, Ice, Pieces, and Alien Project, the latter of which was on the verge of signing a recording contract when the group's bassist died in a car accident, promptly leading to the group's breakup.

Dejected, Perry gave up on music completely and returned back to Lemoore to work once more at his stepfather's turkey ranch. But at his mother's insistence, Perry decided to give music another try. Just as he came to the realization, the manager of the prog rock/fusion act Journey, Herbie Herbert, contacted Perry to see if he'd like to try out for the lead singer spot in the group. Perry was eventually welcomed into the band and Journey's sound shifted away from their early indulgent style and toward a more focused mainstream rock sound. The move paid off; over the course of several albums in the late '70s (1978's Infinity, 1979's Evolution, and 1980's Departure), the Perry led version of Journey became one of the top U.S. arena rock bands. Founding keyboardist Gregg Rolie was replaced by former Babys member Jonathan Cain shortly thereafter, which would result in Perry finding a perfect songwriting partner. Just when it appeared as though Journey couldn't get any more popular, Journey scored two of the early '80s biggest rock records back to back -- 1981's Escape and 1983's Frontiers -- which confirmed what fans had known for several years: that the group members were the undisputed kings of arena rock (as the two albums spawned such massive hit singles as "Don't Stop Believin'," "Who's Crying Now," "Open Arms," "Separate Ways," and "Faithfully").

While Journey was on a brief break from touring and recording around this time, Perry issued his very first solo album in 1984, Street Talk, which unsurprisingly sounded almost identical to Journey and spawned a sizeable hit single with "Oh Sherrie" (as well as another minor hit, "Foolish Heart"). Journey regrouped in 1986 for Raised on Radio and although the album was another sizeable hit, it was noticeably not up to snuff when compared to their previous stellar releases. Sensing this themselves, Journey quietly broke up shortly thereafter. Little was heard from Perry subsequently, as a sophomore solo effort slated for release in 1988, Against the Wall, was ultimately shelved. Journey remained out of commission for several years while a pair of compilations, 1988's Greatest Hits and 1992's boxset Time 3, proved to be steady sellers. Perry finally got around to issuing a second solo album, For the Love of Strange Medicine, exactly ten years after his solo debut.

1996 saw Journey regroup for a new studio recording, Trial by Fire, and a proposed tour. But shortly before the tour was to get underway, Perry discovered that he had a degenerative hip condition, which effectively squashed all plans for a reunion tour (Perry's unwillingness to get corrective surgery right away ultimately led to his ousting from the group, as Journey would soldier on with Perry clone Steve Augeri behind the mic). Perry contributed a pair of tracks to the soundtrack for the 1998 Disney animated film Quest for Camelot before a Perry compilation, Greatest Hits + Five Unreleased, was issued later the same year. Perry was interviewed in the early 21st century for an episode of VH1's Behind the Music that focused on Journey, during which the singer told his side of the story of his ousting from the group and the happenings behind the scenes. In addition to his work with Journey and as a solo artist, Perry has lent his vocal talents to recordings by such other artists as Sammy Hagar, Jan Hammer, and Kenny Loggins. -


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