Whatever Happened to Journey’s Original Singer Steve Perry?

Steve Perry Journey
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With the recent announcement that Journey‘s hit song “Don’t Stop Believin'” has been named the “Biggest Song of All Time” by Forbes, it begs the question… whatever happened to the band’s original singer and frontman Steve Perry? He performed with Journey from 1977 to 1987, and again from 1995 to 1998 but in recent years has been either MIA or focusing on his solo work.

When Forbes declared the 18-times-platinum certified song the biggest ever, a tune that likely everyone around the entire world has heard, Perry admitted that he was “emotionally stunned.” He got emotional on social media, writing a post that read, in part, “To be part of such a moment as this made me reflect on my parents. By that I mean, though I lost them both years ago, I was so happy for them because they are truly the reason this is happening. My dad was a singer and both of them were very musical. So on behalf of my Mom and Dad, I thank every one of you for so many years of support.”

Steve Perry opened up about the Journey song “Don’t Stop Believin'” being named the “Biggest Song of All Time”


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While those young and old know the song to be a classic that you just can’t help but belt out, it wasn’t always a sure thing that it would be a hit. Perry admitted in an older interview that he felt it was a hit with live audiences but it wasn’t getting enough radio play in the 1980s. The song was released in 1981 on the band’s seventh studio album and was instantly praised by critics as “a perfect rock song.”

Photo of Neal SCHON and Ross VALORY and JOURNEY and Steve SMITH and Gregg ROLIE and Steve PERRY; L-R (back): Steve Smith, Gregg Rolie, Ross Valory, (front): Neal Schon, Steve Perry - posed, group shot

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Perry said about the song, “The lyric is a strong lyric about not giving up, but it’s also about being young, it’s also about hanging out, not giving up and looking for that emotion hiding somewhere in the dark that we’re all looking for. It’s about having hope and not quitting when things get tough, because I’m telling you things get tough for everybody.” While Perry left Journey because he said he lost his passion for singing and had gotten into some party behaviors, he didn’t give up his singing career altogether. He has released several solo albums including 1994’s For the Love of Strange Medicine, 2018’s Traces (plus an alternate version of the album in 2020) and 2021’s The Season. Unfortunately for fans, he did not go on tour with his newer album releases.

However, he did please fans when he reunited with his former bandmates to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2005. Now, Journey continues to tour and play music without Perry. They are going out on a massive stadium tour this summer with Def Leppard including frontman Arnel Pineda, Neal Schon, Jonathan Cain, Deen Castronovo, Jason Derlatka and Todd Jensen. Although Perry is not involved in the upcoming tour, he has some exciting announcements of his own.

Steve Perry shares his upcoming plans for his solo music

Steve Perry, lead vocalist of the rock band Journey, watches the game between the San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on May 8, 2009 in Los Angeles, California

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In May of this year, Perry opened up about his career and admitted that he signed with a new label and has a renewed passion for singing. He joined the band The Effect as they released their version of Journey’s “It Could Have Been You” featuring new vocals by Perry.

Plus, Perry revealed, “I just signed with a new label. I’m very excited about it, and I’ll have an opportunity very soon to work with these very, very musically creative people. I’ll probably announce who I signed with very soon. That’s about as much as I can say, but I’m excited about that, and I am working on stuff.”


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As to why he has been avoiding touring, he said, “Well, it’s a long story. Uncle Steve is up in age, and everybody at this age has some aches and pains and things like that. But it’s a really good question that I’ve been asking myself too. And Trev’s been busting my balls about it for a long time, to be honest with you. It’s something that I’m absolutely missing terribly. I can’t even tell you how much, but there’s been a big soulful reclaiming of this original feeling that I had about singing that I needed to get back to. I didn’t want to go out and just turn the wheel or turn the crank.” He added that it is his dream to tour once again, so here’s to hoping!

As far as his personal life goes, the 75-year-old is very tight-lipped about his family. He said in 2019 that he does have a daughter and grandchildren but will not share any details about them.

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May 2019

The biggest and best from the worlds of rock and disco!

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