Neal Schon Shoots Down Talk of Journey Reunion With Steve Perry: ‘Give It a Rest’
News of Steve Perry’s return to active duty — not to mention the release of “No Erasin’,” his first new music since the '90s — has made many people very happy, perhaps none more so than his old Journey bandmate Neal Schon.
Since the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017, Schon has made a point of praising Perry in interviews, social media posts and from the stage at Journey shows. He has been busy this week responding to a lot of people on social media, including fans and Perry himself.
When Perry dropped his first hint that something big was coming — a five-second video that read “I know it’s been a long time comin’ …” — radio personality Mitch Lafon tweeted at Schon, “He’s back … How cool is that?” Schon responded, “Very cool.”
Schon himself checked out Perry’s tweet, re-tweeted it and responded to him, “So now hopefully we can have the coffee,” a reference to his stated desire around the time of the induction to just hang out with his old singer again.
When the cover to Perry’s upcoming album Traces was leaked, Schon posted a picture of the cover, zoomed in to a segment of it in which a dove carrying an olive branch is perched upon an electric guitar. Schon tweeted, “Very interesting deep cover. It says a lot and now I get it completely. Time for coffee.”
Former MTV VJ Martha Quinn responded to Schon’s retweet, noting, “I think it's a beautiful thing to rediscover good vibes with an old friend.” Schon tweeted back, “Absolutely and I believe it all started heading in the right direction prior the [Hall of Fame] induction. I know we both sensed the sincerity of mutual love and respect for one another. It was more than evident.”
And then there are the interactions with fans.One such fan put up an Instagram post containing photos of Schon and Perry embracing the night of the Hall of Fame induction, which Schon re-tweeted.
He also got into a bit of a tiff with another fan. Schon had tweeted the message, “The one thing for sure. I believe that there has never ever been the same Amazing melodic Sense and Combination of a Voice and Guitar as Steve and I had naturally from the beginning. We were connected musically as 1.”
The fan responded, “Bring Steve back to Journey and it would be the best thing to ever happen to Journey. The impact would be massively huge. I guarantee it would completely change Journey for the better.” Schon, perhaps a bit testily, replied, “Give it a rest plz. He has no aspersions [sic] of going back. Forward is what it’s about. We are selling out stadiums right now.”
Perhaps, though, Perry has the last word, at least for this particular moment (until Schon tweets again). When interviewed by a Rhode Island radio station about his former bandmates, Perry deflected the question, saying that he was chiefly interested in his own new music, though he added, “It isn’t that I don’t love these cats. I especially love Neal. Neal is still in my heart. I’ve never heard a guitar player to this day play like [him].”