Jeff Scott Soto Offers Yngwie Malmsteen A Chance To Make Peace

Former Journey vocalist Jeff Scott Soto recently sat down with Chuck Shute for his podcast to talk about his latest album ‘Vacation in the Underworld,’ his upcoming tours and projects, and inevitably, the tension between him and Swedish guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen.

Jeff stated that although he’s not actively trying to make up with Yngwie, he has an intention for it:

“I mean I’m not chasing it, I’m not going to go even to the point of bothering somebody like ‘Oh my God, leave me alone already.’ There’re little hints and little things that I put out there to make sure that he knows I want peace, I just want peace with him. And like I said, I don’t want anything else from him, I’m not looking for another chance to sing for him, I’m not looking for anything. He’s an important factor in my life, he’s the reason why I got my career started and where it started, so I wanna make sure that he understands that I appreciate that.”

The vocalist also referred to the Hall of Heavy Metal History Awards in 2019 and said he mentioned Malmsteen in his speech:

“I got this heavy metal awards thing that happened a few years ago, they started a few years ago, I think I was inducted in the second one. And part of my induction speech, you know, I said ‘I started as this Puerto Rican kid and a Swedish ex-slinger discovered me, and gave me a shot and everything that I’m representing standing on this stage, I owe to him because it started with him.'”

Soto expressed his belief in reconciling with the Swedish guitarist, and stated he will continue seeking an opportunity:

“I’m sure it’s a communication cross, like I  said, once that olive branch is taken, a lot of this stuff can be can be talked and spoken. We can just finally get it all out in the table and find ways and reasons to be friends from this point onward, so I’m not giving up on it like I said I’m not chasing it, but I’m not giving up on it either.”

Jeff Scott was in Yngwie’s debut album ‘Rising Force’ in 1984, and his next album ‘Marching Out’ in 1985. In an interview in 2020, Jeff reflected on these times and stated the reason why he parted ways with Malmsteen:

“One thing I had to learn early on is you don’t really work with Yngwie; you work for Yngwie. And this is one of the reasons why I left early on. I’m so used to working with people. We craft, we build, we formulate together, and I realized I was joining a situation where the main focus was the guitar player. It was his career, it was his band, it was his vision.”

In 2022, Soto posted on his Facebook page, claiming that Yngwie cancelled his show because he learned Jeff Scott was there. Malmsteen later posted on his own Facebook page, denied the claims, and called out Jeff for entering the venue without paying. His post wrote:

“Hmmm…. Some people are making up stories to be in the media again. Kids, don’t believe made-up bullsh*t from people trying to stay relevant! He’s not important for me to cancel my show to my fans. On the other hand, I was told by my agent that he snuck in there without paying, so the security threw him out.

Certain people make up stories. They turn up at my show, get kicked out by security because they snuck in the venue without paying, then turn around and make up a story to try and grab media attention. Some people are sick. Stop stalking me and get help.”

You can watch the rest of the interview below.