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JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
Written By: Gary Crouthamel
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JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
JOURNEY - Arnel Pineda
JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
JOURNEY - Neal Schon
JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
JOURNEY - Ross Valory & Jonathan Cain
JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
JOURNEY - Neal Schon
JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
JOURNEY - Ross Valory
JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
Steve Miller
JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
JOURNEY - Jonathan Cain
JOURNEY / STEVE MILLER
JOURNEY - Deen Castronovo
Tower Of Power
Susquehanna Bank Center
Camden, NJ •  Sunday, June 22, 2014
 
        "The San Francisco Fest" pulled into the SBC, the tour name given by Journey that includes other bay area bands, The Steve Miller Band and Tower Of Power. They all hail from the bay area but have never toured together until this 43-date summer jaunt across the USA.
        After an eight-song opening set by R&B veterans Tower Of Power, it was The Steve Miller Band's time in the spotlight. With the front of the stage draped in a huge tarp of his Book of Dreams album cover, we started to hear a lot of jungle noises before the tarp dropped and the band opened with "Jungle Love," off the same album. Then, dusting off most all of his Greatest Hits 1974-78 for an evening of hit after hit, he played 'Take the Money and Run," "Abracadabra" and "Living in the USA" with Miller playing an awesome harmonica towards the end of the song. Miller, at 70 and looking hip in his black shirt, white hat, jacket, and shades with two huge Pegasus Horses as the band’s backdrop, went right into "Space Cowboy" and "The Stake;" then gave his back-up singer of years, Sonny Charles, vocal duty on "Ooh Poo Pah Doo" and "Shu Ba Da Du Ma Ma Ma Ma.” The band then exited as a huge banner dropped in front of the stage with the Joker album logo on it and Miller sat on a stool with an acoustic guitar and serenaded the crowd with "Dance Dance Dance," "Wild Mountain Honey," "Gangster of Love" and "True Fine Love" with the band returning to the stage. Then the crowd started singing word for word on "The Joker," "Swingtown," "Rock'n Me" and "Jet Airliner" as they ended their set. They didn’t leave the stage, though, but stood enjoying the crowd’s applause and asking if they would like one more song. Of course the crowd went crazy and "Fly Like an Eagle" is how they ended the show.
        Journey, with Neal Schon on lead guiters, Ross Valory on bass, Jonathan Cain on keyboards/guitar, Deen Castronovo on drums, and their newest you-tube singer sensation Arnel Pineda, hit the stage that probably had the biggest video screen of the year behind them and just about all of the stage on which to run back and forth. They opened with “Be Good to Yourself," "Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)” and "Any Way you Want It" for the near sell-out crowd. Now for the biggest question: can Arnel fill the shoes of former Journey singer Steve Perry? Well, he certainly can carry the vocals of Journey songs with his incredible range; and he has developed a great stage presence, moving nonstop, flipping his mic and slapping and giving the fans ‘high fives.’ Next up, "Only the Young" and after this song, the band walked off stage and Schon took center stage to play an incredible version of "The Star-Spangled Banner" while the video screen displayed the American Flag, which brought amazing applause from the crowd. The rest of the band came back to play "Stone in Love" and "Mother, Father” with Castronovo handling vocal duties. Then "She's a Mystery," and to slow things down, "Lights." Now Cain played a little piano intro which led into "Open Arms," with chilling vocals as the crowd chose to sing along with him. "Escape," "Ritual" and "Anytime" led into a guitar solo by Schon which then led into a crowd pleasing "Wheel in the Sky," as the crowd again sang along and shouted, "for tomorrow!"  Then "Faithfully" would be followed by "Don't Stop Believin’" with streamers pouring down from the light trusses and confetti cannons spewing all over the crowd as the band took their bows and left the stage.
        After a short break they returned for their encore, "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin,' giving the audience one last chance for a huge sing-along. The band’s showmanship as well as their level of musicianship and the amazing vocals of Pineda made this a most impressive show.  
– Gary Crouthamel, Concert Photojournalist 
 
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