The band adds three members
Journey founder and guitarist Neal Schon has announced its new bassist and drummer. Schon took to Twitter late Saturday night (May 23rd) to share the news as the group performed “Don’t Stop Believin'” via social distancing for an online UNICEF special.
Former American Idol judge Randy Jackson returns as bassist and Narada Michael Walden was announced as drummer. Schon also confirmed that keyboardist/vocalist Jason Derlatka has joined as its sixth member. Keyboardist Jonathan Cain and vocalist Arnel Pineda round out the new lineup.
Jackson makes his return more than 30 years after his original run from 1985-1987, and appeared on the band’s 1986’s Raised On Radio. Walden in renowned songwriter, singer and producer who’s drummed alongside Jeff Beck, Tommy Bolin and more.
The news follows the March firing of drummer Steven Smith and bassist Ross Valory, after an attempted corporate coup d’état by the pair. Schon and Cain filed a lawsuit against their former bandmates, and accuses them of sowing discord among the band members by engaging in self-dealing and selfishly putting their interests ahead of the band’s. The lawsuit seeks to enjoin a scheme by defendants to possess the rights to the Journey name and be paid without actually performing, and also seeks damages in excess of $10 million.
Schon, the only remaining founding member, who has played at every performance since the inception of Journey, along with Cain and former lead singer Steve Perry, formed the core of Journey and were responsible for the band’s meteoric rise to prominence in the 1980’s. Together, they wrote several of the most well-known rock songs in the world — including “Don’t Stop Believin”, the best-selling digital track from the 20th century, with over seven million copies sold in the United States, and the second most downloaded song of all time.
In 1985, pursuant to a Trademark License Agreement, Nightmare Productions, Inc., one of the band’s corporate entities, provided an exclusive, irrevocable license of the Journey Mark to Schon, Cain and Perry. Under the Trademark License Agreement, the license continues “until the date upon which none of Stephen Perry, Neal Joseph Schon, or Jonathan Cain is actively engaged in a professional music career utilizing the name “‘JOURNEY.’”
After Perry left the band in 1997, Schon and Cain continued to perform as Journey.
In 1998, Schon, Cain and Perry entered into a written agreement providing Schon and Cain the sole, exclusive, irrevocable right to control the Journey Mark, including the Journey name. They are, therefore, authorized to perform together as Journey, with or without anyone else.
Defendants Smith and Valory were members of Journey at various times during the band’s history. Collectively, they only have a very few song credits on Journey albums. Nevertheless, they were compensated generously for many years.
The band has canceled its 2020 tour due to COVID-19. The 60+ date tour, featuring the Pretenders, was to kick off Friday, May 15th and run through Saturday, September 12th.
Author: Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.