September 29th, 2016

Friday’s Leave it to Beeber column — Journey show promises a trip back in time

By Lethbridge Herald on July 10, 2015.

Al Beeber
Due to vacation season and staff shortages, this column has been sporadic these days with most of my time now spent on afternoon shifts putting together pages.
But alas, I’m still here and although the column has been as regular as rain in California lately, it hasn’t been abandoned.
With summer heating up one upcoming show needs to be given a plug — on July 19, southern Albertans are in for a treat at the Enmax Centre with a performance by a band that may not be legendary but certainly comes close.
Journey, with Filipino singer Arnel Pineda, has stood the test of time and changing musical tastes since being formed in the 1970s. Pineda, discovered by guitarist Neal Schon in 2007 after spotting his performances on YouTube, is a revelation.
I recorded on Wi-Fi channel a performance by the band in the Phillipines with Pineda as frontman and not only does he have charisma, but also the vocal chops to match the legendary Steve Perry who was replaced by the band in 1998.
Over the years, the band members have changed with the constants being founding members Schon and Ross Valory who go back to the band’s San Francisco beginnings in 1973. Keyboardist Jonathan Cain started with Journey in 1980.
Long-time drummer Deen Castronovo will meth the Lethbridge show and others due to legal problems in Oregon.
Too soon? Nah. . .not for me.
Tickets for the show have been picking up steam. I bought a couple for my son and I and had to settle for the $70 upper tier ones since the availability of preferred seats was gone.
And being last-minute Lethbridge, I suspect as the clock ticks down, the remaining tickets won’t last long. After all, with hits like “Don’t Stop Believin”,’ “Any Way You Want It” and “Wheel in the Sky,” this band had some of the biggest hits in recent decades.
This show will be the latest musical bonding experience for  me and my now-adult boy who works as an emergency medical technician in northern Alberta.
While I missed much of his childhood due to the demands of work, I tried to make an effort to introduce him to the world of music early, even convincing him to take up band in junior high school at St. Francis Junior High where he played trumpet until the onset of Type 1 diabetes momentarily threw a monkeywrench at his whole life.
Over the years, he and I have hung out at a range of shows — Nickleback, Three Days Grace, Snoop Dog and most recently Motley Crüe, just to name a few.
When I texted him about Journey, a band I suspect many 22-year-olds aren’t all that familiar with, he was all-aboard.
The difference this time around will be that he’s buying the beers which are going to taste mighty fine on a hot summer night.
Tickets for Journey are $70, $90 and $110 at the Ticket Centre.
SPEAKING OF SUMMER: This weekend is once again Street Wheelers weekend when hot cars, smoking rubber and loud exhausts are going to make for clogged streets and a lot of fun.
For all of you who will be cranking up the volume and hitting the asphalt to cruise and look at the mighty fine machines here for the weekend, please keep an eye out for motorcyclists and load your vehicles with survival kits if you’re heading east down Whoop-Up Drive.
That zipper idea the city came up with works as well as a 1980s Lada.
One thing I’ve discovered while waiting to get across the hill this week is the variety that exists on the SiriusXM satellite radio system I bought. While on a 17-hour road trip to Ontario a few weeks ago, I pretty much just listened to Hair Nation and Ozzy’s Boneyard but my tastes have diversified while theoretically commuting across Whoop-Up.
There is a bright side to the construction delays, though — no photo radar nailing drivers while they naturally accelerate heading downhill, a speed trap which is nothing more than a money grab.

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