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Why Arnel Pineda Has to ‘Capture the Soul’ of Steve Perry

Arnel Pineda and Steve Perry
Ethan Miller / Mike Coppola, Getty Images

Journey signer Arnel Pineda said it was important for him to “capture the soul” of classic-era frontman Steve Perry, while also making sure he came across as himself, too.

In a new interview with Front Row Live Entertainment, Pineda admitted his determination to ensure he fulfilled this led to a certain amount of “anxiety” as he worked on the band’s upcoming album.

“You try to capture the soul of Steve Perry when you’re singing those songs,” he said. “You want it to be you in that album, but you have to be able to capture that soul and relay it, because the fans are expecting … it has to be Journey. They got used to that sound.”

Pineda noted he’s “just trying to be me now – I just sing it the way I want to sing it – because I like to assume that I’ve already captured [Perry’s] soul. I just want to be me with my voice, and then I just wanna relax and be able to share my own passion, but at the same time still send the soul of Steve Perry out there. And so far, the guys are not complaining about my sound. … I’m just kind of anxious now what the fans will say as soon as they hear this new album. The anxiety is gonna kill me now.”

The singer added that Journey were exploring new musical directions on what will be his third LP with the band, following 2008’s Revelation and 2011’s Eclipse. “But at the same time, they’re trying to stay somewhat in the tradition, in the legacy,” he said. “It’s a 50-50 thing. I mean, it would be kind of boring if you keep on staying on the same path … we get bored and we try to do something else, see if works. And then, if it works, ‘Hey, let’s do it more!’ And then, when it’s starting to get sour again, then maybe we should get back to the old style … let’s just put a little twist and maybe the fans will like it again.”

Pineda previously said at least three songs had been tracked for the album, which is expected at some point in 2021. He’s working from home in the Philippines while the rest of the band record across the U.S. as a result of coronavirus restrictions. In October, guitarist Neal Schon said 13 song ideas were underway and that he hoped the record would turn out to be a “diverse” work.


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