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Julie Devereaux

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LAS VEGAS, NM - MAY 03: Guitarist Neal Schon of Journey performs during the first night of the band's second nine-show residency at The Joint inside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on May 3, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Journey guitarist Neal Schon has been quiet since the group came off the road earlier this year, but he’s back with a new holiday-themed EP.

The four-song set includes Schon’s rendition of “Ave Maria” along with Elvis Presley‘s “Can’t Help Falling In Love” and renditions of two Journey ballads, “Open Arms” and “Faithfully.” He’s selling the EP via digital retailers as well as at his own SchonMusic.com site.

It’s Schon’s first new solo music since 2015’s Vortex, and he was also part of Santana IV last year. Journey’s last album, Eclipse, came out during 2011, and during this summer tour he posted several Twitter messages about violent differences with his bandmates, particularly keyboardist Jonathan Cain.

Cain tells us he was blindsided by Schon’s broadsides, but he says Journey doesn’t let that affect what happens on stage:

“That wasn’t the first time we’ve come at odds with each other. It’s been 36 years now, you know? Do husband and wife get in fights when they’ve been married for 36 years? Plenty of times…But we played great, we were selling out every night. I just chose to take the high road and play. Whatever differences, whatever opinions, just let that be in the background, whatever. My main focus was to be as good as we could be up there. The fans deserve it.”

Journey is expected to tour with Def Leppard during 2018 but no formal announcement has been made yet.

 

Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.

Erica Banas is rock/classic rock news blogger that loves the smell of old vinyl in the morning.