Neal Schon Recalls Steve Perry Declining His Offer To Sing With Journey


Journey lead guitarist Neal Schon joined an interview with Louder Sound and revealed that his former bandmate and singer Steve Perry refused to perform with them. Schon shared his feelings about seeing and chatting with him on a special night.

Perry’s time as Journey’s lead singer between 1978 and 1987 is considered by many as the band’s most commercially successful and popular era. However, fame didn’t help the band members resolve their issues, which resulted in a hiatus in 1987. The star-studded lineup reunited almost after a decade and released their tenth studio album entitled ‘Trial by Fire’ on October 22, 1996. The band decided to start a world tour to promote it, but Perry’s hip injury ruined their plans.

Things got worse when the singer hesitated to get a hip replacement surgery, and the other Journey members waited more than a year until they gave him an ultimatum. Steve Perry had to decide whether he would start his recovery soon or they would have to find a new lead singer. Perry announced his departure from Journey shortly afterward, but they reunited at 2017’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony.

During Journey’s induction, the band also performed to celebrate it, but the former singer didn’t join them on the stage. Neal Schon detailed the situation, saying they were ready to play with him, but Perry declined their offer. The famous guitarist highlighted that the best part of the ceremony was talking to the singer, which was emotional. Schon added that they had a great friendship and always loved each other.

Neal Schon said the following in his interview:

“The best part of the evening was speaking with Steve Perry in his room before we went on stage. We hadn’t seen each other for many years. That was the most moving part of the evening to me. We had a connection and a love for one another. It was emotional, I think, for both of us.

I was ready if he wanted to do it at the last second, to do ‘Lights’ or something like that. I thought he would do it at night. He declined. It is what it is.”

You can check out one of their performances below.