It was this very week in 2006 that “Tonight” by Jeremy Camp would debut on the Byrdbored Blast Singles Chart and spend two weeks on top. The tune would finish the year as the #10 song of 2006. Camp has scored eighteen (#1) Byrdbored singles and spent a total of 149 weeks with the top Christian Contemporary song on Byrdbored. Enjoy a listen back to the top song this week thirteen years ago….
For the third straight week, Huey Lewis & The News control the #1 song on the Byrdbored Blast Singles chart with “Her Love Is Killin’ Me”. Their lead has narrowed in the last week, but the group retained the top spot and could have one of the surprises of 2019. With a new album expected in 2020, this song could set up a big year for the guys next year.
Scott Stapp remains at #2 this week with “Last Hallelujah”, but was much closer to taking the top spot than last week. This could become Stapp’s third straight #1 song from his latest solo effort. At #3, is the second top five hit from new band Seven Past Sunset. The Midwest rockers move up two notches this week with “Chasing You” and the tune is still gaining some steam in the process. Be sure to check out the band’s latest video for their next single, “Need”, on First Flights.
Rock seemingly has taken over lately as there were three debuts into the Byrdy Dozen by rock acts. Whitesnake debuts their fourth hit from their latest album, “Flesh & Blood”, with “When I Think Of You (Color Me Blue)” at #9. Alter Bridge debuted their seventh Byrdy Dozen hit, “Wouldn’t You Rather”, at #10. The hit is the first single from their new album, “Walk The Sky” which is gaining a great deal of momentum on Byrdbored. At #11, is the first Byrdy Dozen hit from Saint Asonia with “Beast” debuting this week.
Dropping out of the Byrdbored Blast Singles Byrdy Dozen this week is “Save Me” by Skillet which spent three weeks on top of the chart and is currently ranked as the #2 song of the year. The first #1 single from Adelitas Way, “Drifting”, also fell out after seven weeks on the chart and one week on top. Collective Soul’s “Over Me” peaked at #2 on the chart and is the Georgia rock band’s 25th Gold single on Byrdbored.
Scott Stapp remained on top of the Byrdbored Blast Albums chart for a fourth non-consecutive week with “The Space Between The Shadows” in it’s 14th week on the chart. The album has now been certified double-platinum on Byrdbored. “Attention Attention” by Shinedown remains very strong in it’s 77th week on the chart and remains at #2. Alter Bridge moved up two notches with their latest album, “Walk The Sky”, which debuted at #5 last week.
Saint Asonia comes in at #5 with their second album, “Flawed Design”, in it’s debut week with the help of their first Byrdy Dozen hit, “Beast”. AOR rock band, Find Me, debuts at #7 with their latest effort, “Angels In Blue”. It is the first time the band has ever charted on Byrdbored. Seven Past Sunset re-enters the chart at #10 with their self-titled EP with the success of “Chasing You” in the top five of the singles chart. The album originally peaked at #8 a few months back, but could get new life with “Chasing You” and “Need” being added in the coming weeks.
Collective Soul’s latest album, “Blood”, dropped off the album chart after 17 weeks. The former #1 album spent four weeks on top and has been certified double-platinum on Byrdbored. The album has now helped the band jump to #8 on the all-time artists listing. Robert Randolph & The Family Band dropped out after only one week with their latest, “Brighter Days”, spending last week at #10. Blink-182 also dropped from the chart after five weeks and peaking at #6 with “Nine”.
Listen to the #1 song, “Her Love Is Killin’ Me”, from Huey Lewis & The News and enjoy your week Byrd Heads!!!!
“The Other Side” hit #1 on Byrdbored this very week in 1990. The tune would finish the year as the #2 song of the year, and is one of twenty #1 tunes for the band. Enjoy a look back at the craziness that is Aerosmith and “The Other Side”.
Journey might be one of the most straight forward hit makers in the history of music. They weren’t trying to save the world with their hits, and after Steve Perry came into the picture the critics mostly didn’t like Journey. After all, the early years of Journey were more about a jazz influenced sound that exited as Steve Perry entered the fray. Neal Schon was considered a music prodigy and had been a member of Santana in 1971-1972 and his early influence definitely steered the band in a different direction, but he was the stabilizing constant. Since Byrdbored began charting in 1981, my “journey” with the band began then so that will be my focus for this article. Although I do like some of the bands early work (and it will probably get some charting action in 2020 with the Vault charts), most of my favorites are from 1980 on.
One of my early favorite #1 songs was “Any Way You Want It” which was actually released in 1980, but I seriously had no idea at the time (I was nine years old). I heard it on the radio and once was all I needed to become hooked on it. Since the album, “Departure”, was released in early 1980, it never charted on Byrdbored. I started my album charts in 1983 so that was something that might have cost the band some points with me. “Any Way You Want It” would become one of my favorite songs of 1981 and spend six weeks at #1. It is still my all-time favorite song by the band and is one of seven Diamond certified singles by the group.
By the middle of 1981, however, I would get a surprise by the band. They would drop a new album, “Escape”, which also never got to chart on Byrdbored (originally) but would include five Byrdbored hit singles. “Open Arms”, “Don’t Stop Believin'” and “Who’s Crying Now” were immediate #1 hits while “Stone In Love” and “Still They Ride” would both crack the top ten. The album, “Escape”, would have been a major hit in 1981 if I had an album chart, but in 2005 I added what I called “Vault” charts which did enable songs and albums that did not originally get to chart on Byrdbored to get their time in the sun (this is similar to Billboard’s Catalog charts if you are familiar with those). Even though I did stop those charts in 2013 (will return in 2020), “Escape” did chart on the Vault Albums chart and ended up spending seven weeks on top and a year in the Byrdy Dozen. Although the album probably would have been an even bigger hit back in 1981, the Vault charts did approximate what “Escape” could have done and allowed the album to rightfully be a Byrdbored hit. Actually “Escape” is now ranked as the band’s third highest album on Byrdbored which, in reality, it probably should be. In the real world, “Escape” was Journey’s biggest selling album at around 11.8 million worldwide as of 2019.
In 1983, Journey would have their biggest hit album on Byrdbored as “Frontiers” would spend sixteen weeks at #1 and 87 total weeks, over 1983 and 1984, on the Albums chart. The album spawned three more #1 hit singles as “Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)” spent a month on top, “Faithfully” spent three weeks and “Send Her My Love” spent five weeks. “After The Fall” peaked at #6, as well, and Journey was officially one of the hottest bands on Byrdbored. “Frontiers” has not sold as well as the previous album, “Escape”, but has sold almost 7.7 million copies worldwide as of 2019.
1986 would be the best of times and the worst of times for Journey. Their new album, “Raised On Radio”, would once again land at #1 on Byrdbored and “Be Good To Yourself” was on top of the singles chart. The album would produce two other #1 tunes in “Girl Can’t Help It” and “Why Can’t This Night Go On Forever”. “I’ll Be Alright Without You” would peak at #4, while “Suzanne” would land in the top ten. The music itself was still all good, but the band itself were having internal problems. The word spread that during recording sessions for the album, Ross Valory and Steve Smith were fired. The tour would see Randy Jackson on bass and Mike Baird on drums. Steve Perry has since admitted it was a mistake in many interviews. However, the “Raised On Radio” tour would be the last Journey tour with Perry on vocals and who knows if any of the turmoil during this period was some of the root cause. Perry has stated that he was burned out completely by the end of this tour, and had to take a break. No one knew just how long a break it would be, and no one could have guessed it would be his last. Despite the issues, “Raised On Radio” has sold close to 3.3 million copies to date and is my second favorite album behind “Frontiers”.
With Perry getting away from music, it was time for the Journey release of their Greatest Hits collection in 1988. It would contain all their 1970’s and 1980’s hits, as well as, a new track called “Only The Young” which would crack the top five on Byrdbored. It would seem that the band could do no wrong and were on top of the musical world. However, Journey would vanish from the musical landscape which began one of the most confusing band absences in music history. They went from being on top of the mountain to vanishing with no announcement and no real updates for almost a decade. Despite that, the band’s Greatest Hits package has sold a staggering 20.5 million copies worldwide and continues to sale.
Steve Perry was in the wind and Neal Schon along with Jonathan Cain helped form Bad English along with John Waite, Ricky Phillips and Deen Castronovo. Bad English would have some success in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, but it wasn’t Journey. The Journey hiatus grew more and more confounding as the years passed, and it did appear that Journey was dead and buried for good.
I still remember the first time I heard the song, “When You Love A Woman” on the radio. I couldn’t believe it! Could it be that finally there was a new song from Journey? I quickly confirmed that indeed it was a new tune from the band after nearly a decade away. The song was the lead single from the band’s new album, “Trial By Fire”, which would be released in October of 1996 and feature the classic 1980’s lineup which had not recorded together since 1983’s “Frontiers”. The chemistry that the band had displayed was also back and “When You Love A Woman” was one of my surprise hits of 1996 spending seven total weeks at #1 and driving “Trial By Fire” to #1 on the Byrdbored Blast Albums chart as well. “When You Love A Woman” was also nominated for a Grammy award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group. The band from the Bay was back and on top of Byrdbored again. The album would produce three other top ten hits in “Message Of Love”, “When I Think Of You” and “If He Should Break Your Heart”. Although the album wasn’t as great as the previous three by the band, it was so long since there was new music that I simply didn’t care. “Trial By Fire” spent seven weeks at #1 and 29 total weeks in the top ten on Byrdbored which re-established the guys for me and possibly might have been the album that allowed them to make the Nest of Fame in the first place. Without this comeback, I am not sure Journey would have made it.
There would never be a “Trial By Fire” tour, however, as Steve Perry would hurt his hip preparing for the tour. He would have a decision to make as to whether to have hip surgery or not. The band wanted him to go ahead with the surgery and then possibly try to still do a tour. However, Steve Perry delayed his decision and the tour (along with the album) just seemed to drift away like the band did after the “Raised On Radio” tour. Obviously, no one but the band knows the absolute truth, but there is no doubt that this situation caused a disconnect in the band and Journey as it was would never be again. One of the amazing facts about “Trial By Fire” is that it has sold 1.8 million copies worldwide without any tour to even support it! The band had to be left with a severe case of what might have been.
The band waited on Perry to heal and wanted to support him from all accounts. However, months stretched into years and the founding member of Journey, Neal Schon, was ready to make more new music as Journey. This is definitely where no one really knows what happened or didn’t happen, but in the end Schon and the band were not willing to wait any longer for Perry to return.
In 1998, the band decided to move forward with another lead singer and the Steve Augeri era was born. Augeri had been the lead singer of Tall Stories and Tyketto and some fans came to refer to Augeri as “Steve Perry with a perm” once they finally heard him sing during the “Arrival” tour (which kicked off in 2000). It was simply amazing how close Augeri’s voice did sound like Perry. Despite a great deal of doubt on my part, I did buy the album and was very pleasantly surprised! “Arrival” would become the band’s fifth Byrdbored #1 album and spend three weeks on top while having a great deal of staying power charting 42 weeks on the Albums chart. The album did not chart any #1 singles, but did produce four Byrdy Dozen hits including two top five hits, “Higher Place” and “Signs Of Life”. In 2005, Augeri was also on the album, “Generations”, which became the band’s lowest ranked album on Byrdbored as it would peak at #6 and not even be certified Gold.
Steve Augeri would decide to leave the band in 2006 as he was having increased vocal problems. The guys of Journey would have yet another decision to make as they were once again without a singer. However, a Filipino singer who fronted a Journey tribute act was discovered on You Tube and supposedly the band was blown away by him. Arnel Pineda would take the reigns of Journey in 2007 and the 2008 album, “Revelation”, would soon follow.
“Revelation” would hit Byrdbored and peak at #3 on the albums chart, but would contain the band’s last #1 single, “Turn Down The World Tonight”, as well as, two other top five hits in “After All These Years” and “Never Walk Away”. Pineda was a perfect fit for the band and “Revelation” actually hit one million sales worldwide. The album was also certified Platinum on Byrdbored.
The 2011 release, “Eclipse”, would actually hit #1 on Byrdbored giving Journey six #1 albums all-time. It would only contain one Byrdy Dozen single as “Anything Is Possible” would peak at #11. Although the album was certified Platinum on Byrdbored, it did drop much faster than the “Revelation” album and would make it’s exit from the albums chart after only eleven weeks.
Although most consider the Arnel Pineda era inferior to the Steve Perry one (of course), I actually feel that is has been very successful under the circumstances. If I have a problem with Journey it is that they don’t make enough new music, but that is normal for a band their age. The drama of Steve Perry not being with the band really went away and most really like Pineda. Would most people prefer to have Perry fronting the band again and Journey at least trying to make solid new music? Of course most would. The reality, however, is that Perry probably won’t return. Steve Perry did finally release a new solo album in late 2018 though, so there is always a chance (don’t hold your breath though).
As far as new music from the band goes, it doesn’t look promising. Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain seem to now be in disagreement about recording new music at all. Cain has recorded a Christian Contemporary album which does seem strange, but he has new found faith and that might have something to do with his feelings about new Journey music. Cain has also stated that new music from Journey is now irrelevant and he just doesn’t feel the need to do it. Schon, of course, disagrees and would very much like to record a new Journey album.
For a band that seems so straight forward about the music they record, it has had so much drama over of the years. I have always felt Journey is a band that every person can find something that they like. They cover all the bases and make solid, quality music without a ton of flashiness and show. I honestly believe that is largely why they have had so much success with fans of every type. They aren’t a hard rock band at all, of course, but they have their rocking moments. They definitely have the ballads covered, and as usual they do get some grief about that. However, I can say that anytime I am wanting to hear music, and I am in no particular mood for something specific, it seems that Journey is still on my playlist. They are my go-to band a great deal of times, and so much of their music is just timeless. Their musicianship is also something that is very rarely pointed out, and it is very understated in my opinion.
Journey is and always will be one of those bands that time will never contain. Some bands are just about a moment in time, and although they make great music, their music will never be played thirty, forty or fifty years from now. Journey has the rare ability to touch people with their music in ways that not many can. There is this “average” man or woman feel to their music that just connects at every level and always has. A person can simply feel their life in their songs, and feel love or loss at almost a heartbeat level. The songs are real and true and touch the lives of so many and always will. The band has sold over 75 million albums worldwide, and when you consider the periods they did not make any music that is amazing. This small town boy grew up with Journey in his life pretty much from the very beginning. I don’t know life without them, and as far as I am concerned I never will.
Journey has 12 (#1) Singles, 29 Byrdy Dozen Singles, 6 (#1) Albums, (3,799) Total Byrdbored Points Earned (currently).
Journey are: Neal Schon (Lead Guitar, backing vocals), Steve Perry (Lead vocals, occasional keyboards 1977-1987, 1995-1998), Ross Valory (Bass, backing vocals 1973-1985, 1995-present), Jonathan Cain (Keyboards, piano, backing vocals, rhythm guitar 1980-1987, 1995-present), Steve Smith (Drums, percussion, backing vocals 1978-1985, 1995-1998, 2015-present), Gregg Rolie (Keyboards, piano, harmonica, lead and backing vocals 1973-1980), George Tickner ( Rhythm guitar, backing vocals 1973-1975), Aynsley Dunbar (Drums, percussion, backing vocals 1974-1978), Steve Augeri (Lead vocals, backing vocals, occasional rhythm guitar 1998-2006), Deen Castronovo (Drums, percussion, backing vocals 1998-2015), Randy Jackson (Bass, backing vocals 1985-1987), Mike Baird (Drums, percussion, backing vocals 1985-1987), Prairie Prince (Rhythm Guitar, backing vocals 1973-1974), Robert Fleischman (Lead vocals, backing vocals 1977), Jeff Scott Soto (Lead vocals, backing vocals 2006-2007), Arnel Pineda (Lead vocals, backing vocals 2007-present), Travis Thibodaux (Keyboards, backing vocals and occasional lead vocals 2016-present).