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 NEW Y0RK STATE FAIR SYRACUSE 8/23/2008

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PostSubject: NEW Y0RK STATE FAIR SYRACUSE 8/23/2008   Sun Aug 24, 2008 5:50 am

SOLD OUT!

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18,000-plus sellout at NYS Fair Tonight! My thoughts...
Just got in from the show at the New York State Fair in Syracuse tonight. Had to share some thoughts on the night before I went to bed. This won't be a review proper, with set lists and the like, but I did want to mention a few things.

First off, this was my fifth Journey show since 1998, and ironically the last four since 2000 (including tonight) I've seen them at the Fair Grandstand. I don't have the exact numbers handy, but from memory I remember every one of the previous three (in 2001, 2002 and 2004) were between 4000 and 6000 in attendance. Basically, there was a two-thirds empty shed every time. Well, that wasn't the case tonight. Every single seat in the house--a little over 18000 total--was filled. Complete sellout. One of the only sellouts in the past 15 years according to one staffer. I think the most recent act to do so was Kenny Chesney a year or two ago. Mind you, this is a venue that has the Jonas Brothers, Daughtry, Brooks and Dunn with ZZ Top and Rascal Flatts on this year's lineup alone. Not one of those acts have sold it out. Journey has, and at $56 a head.

I have never, ever seen Neal or Jonathan smile as much as they did tonight. Both of them grinning from ear to ear the whole night. Most animated I've ever seen either of them. I may start a war by saying this, but I believe the Perry-era is almost completely out of people's minds now. Yes, people remember him, and God knows he's my favorite vocalist of all-time, but with just about every date on this tour a sellout and the album just a breath away from Platinum status (not to mention a top 10 AC hit with AATY), I think Journey has finally proven that they can move on successfully without Perry. I am as stunned as anyone that they've pulled it off, because I can't think of one band with this many vocalist changes that's managed to come back with this kind of success. And it's in no small part to the treasure they've found in Arnel.

....Speaking of which, let me just remark how this powerhouse had the whole crowd eating out of the palm of his hand from the first note. I overheard many conversations prior to the show starting, and people knew of him and were excited to hear what he could do. It wasn't like people were expecting Perry, at least not the people I listened to. And wow, did he deliver tonight. He hit so many unbelievable notes--I kept seeing jaws drop and high fives every time. He didn't just hit a few random high notes. He hit some of those ear-piercing wails that Perry killed with. The high notes during the solo in WITS? Pulled off perfectly. This gentleman is simply amazing. I was a huge Augeri supporter (still am), but Arnel is definitely the man for the job. His energy was totally non-stop.


A few other notes on Journey before I move on to the other bands: Don't know if they're doing this at other shows, but there was no Majestic intro. Instead, they had a live cam backstage showing them clowning around and doing their huddle while making their way to the stage. AC/DC's Back In Black was playing on the PA at the time and it was a riot watching Arnel lip-sync to it while mugging into the camera. We got Dead or Alive and La Do Da, both of which most people sat down for, unbelievably enough. They used a magnificent rapid-fire animation sequence on all the screens that lasted the length of DOA. Great, dizzying visuals. Some excellent graphics to WITS as well, so it's not all "CNN/Larry King" lights.

I can't say enough about the performance. Best Journey show I've seen since Vacation's Over in '98, and certainly the happiest I've ever seen Neal and Jon. Good for them--they deserve it! And I think the sales of Revelation would be even higher than they are right now, but the band is selling the CD set for $15 dollars at the shows. I saw those getting scooped up, along with an amazing amount of t-shirts. It seemed that every tenth person had a brand-new Revelation tour shirt on, and most of them were teenagers and twenty-somethings. You couldn't get near the merch booth all night.

As for Heart. I have to agree with what others have posted lately and say that they gave the band a run for their money. From comments I heard tonight, I think they were a good part of the draw as well. The crowd went wild for them. When Nancy Wilson first walked out, the roar of the crowd was unreal. Then when Ann stepped out a few moments later, it was sheer pandemonium. They both have so much respect from rock fans all over, and rightly so. They are truly rock royalty. And what a show--they started off with Wild Child and never let up after that. Unreal. And Ann did not miss or duck a note all night. She is truly a phenomenon. Hasn't lost one bit of range, and the backing musicians were top-notch. Absolute perfection.

Although I am admittedly not the biggest Cheap Trick fan in the world, I do like them and have to say that they were spot-on as well. Special props have to go to Robin Zander. Again, as with the other two vocalists tonight, he was dead on the whole set and hasn't lost a bit of range either. He hit every high note in The Flame and the crowd went nuts. And no one is more fun to watch than Rick Nielsen. That guy is just non-stop hilarity, not to mention one hell of a guitarist.

So that's it in a nutshell people. If you're one of the few that's chosen to sit this tour out, I implore you not to. You are missing three world-class bands at the top of their game, and probably the best Journey show you'll ever see outside of the Escape tour. I'm telling you, Arnel is that good. Watch him live and you'll be amazed! This band is back, and I daresay better than ever.
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PostSubject: SYRACUSE.COM REVIEW   Sun Aug 24, 2008 6:09 am



NEW YORK STATE FAIR
Latest news, schedules, concert lineups and more (Aug. 21 - Sept. 1, 2008)

Journey performs at the state fair grandstand Saturday night. From left are, Ross Valory, Arnel Pineda, Deen Castronovo and Neal Schon.

State fair attendance up
by Robert A. Baker

Saturday August 23, 2008, 11:11 PM

More than 90,000 people attended the New York State Fair Saturday, a state fair spokesman said.

Attendance Saturday was 90,175, up 29,886 from the first Saturday attendance of last year's fair, Fred Pierce, state fair spokesman, said.

Total attendance so far this year is 221,718, up 37,281 from the first three days of last year's fair.
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PostSubject: SYRACUSE.COM REVIEW   Sun Aug 24, 2008 8:11 am



http://www.syracuse.com/entertainment/index.ssf?/base/entertainment-2/121956814217620.xml&coll=1
Review
Sunday, August 24, 2008
By Mark Bialczak
Staff Writer

The rather unlikely hookup with singer Arnel Pineda has breathed a whole new life into rock band Journey.

With oodles of enthusiasm and a voice that's a dead ringer for the most famous of Journey singers - the revered Steve Perry - Pineda and original Journey men Neal Schon on guitar and Ross Valory on bass thoroughly thrilled the state fair's packed Mohegan Sun Grandstand.

Add practically original keyboardist Jonathan Cain, who joined in 1981, and drummer Deen Castronovo, who came on in 1998, and Journey had the goods to deliver the hook-filled rock songs that have kept their songs on radio and in pop culture since they burst out of San Francisco in 1979.

Yet all eyes and ears were on charismatic Pineda. Schon saw him singing Journey tunes with the cover band Zoo in Pineda's native Philippines.

Pineda's the right guy for this rejuvenation. Close your eyes and you'd swear you're listening to Perry's voice and phrasing. Heck, open your eyes real quick and Pineda even wears his dark hair long-to-the-shoulders, like Perry, circa the hit-making years.

Sing he can, and the crowd stood and turned back the clock to dance and sing for old favorites that quite passionately included "Only the Young," "Stone in Love," "Separate Ways," "Lights," "Open Arms," "Faithfully," "Wheel in the Sky" and "Be Good to Yourself."

Of course, they all hit stride for "Don't Stop Believing," their epic rocker brought back into everyday conversation when "Sopranos" creator David Chase used it to back the final scene of the HBO series' finale.

Schon and Cain have been integral to Journey's success over the decades, and their work on a couple of new songs from this year's CD, "Revelation," prove that they're in this rebirth for the long haul.

The near-capacity crowd - only a handful of single tickets were left - got into the big-show mood way before Journey took the stage.

Second band Heart won over the masses with a stirring set of mostly hits and a couple of holy-cow covers.

Singer Ann Wilson hit the clear skies with her huge voice as fans danced to "Magic Man," "Barricuda" and "Crazy on You." Sister Nancy Wilson added sweet mandolin picking and a nice lead vocal to "These Dreams," as well as an intriguing acoustic guitar riff to start "Crazy on You."

But it was Ann's voice and bravado that amazed fans as she nailed The Who's classic "Love Reign O'er Me" and Led Zeppelin's "Goin' to California."

Cheap Trick opened the night with a fun set of their gotta-love-'em rock.

Quirky guitarist Rick Nielsen, cool singer Robin Zander, 12-string bass standout Tom Petersson and lay-it-down drummer Bun E. Carlos still enjoy playing the hits that made them the best little band to come out of Rockford, Ill., in 1979.

Fans still love cranking up the voice to "I Want You to Want Me" and "Surrender," two songs that soared from that album, as well as power ballad "The Flame" and walloping rocker "Dream Police," too.
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PostSubject: Re: NEW Y0RK STATE FAIR SYRACUSE 8/23/2008   Sun Aug 24, 2008 2:43 pm

UNBELIEVABLE!!YET AGAIN!!! OUR GUYS DID IT AGAIN 1 AND THEY WILLSLAM DUNK EVERY VENUE ACROSS AMERICA!!!! LOVE IT!LOVE IT! LOVE IT!! THANKS BUS FOR THE UPDATE!!! afro
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PostSubject: Re: NEW Y0RK STATE FAIR SYRACUSE 8/23/2008   Sun Aug 24, 2008 7:23 pm

[Thanks for this post...got teary eyed again....AWESOME>>>>LOVE YOU JOURNEY!!!!!!


flower cherry cherry Like a Star @ heaven Like a Star @ heaven Like a Star @ heaven
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PostSubject: Re: NEW Y0RK STATE FAIR SYRACUSE 8/23/2008   Sun Aug 24, 2008 9:12 pm

Thanks Dbus for the update. They really rock the house down making me more excited to see them soon. bounce bounce bounce
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