The local music scene is definitely alive and, after a year like 2020, is clearly raring to go. Journey Revisited is a Journey tribute band that focuses on the Steve Perry and Gregg Rolie era with members from right here in the 209.
The band consists of Frank House on lead vocals, Kevin Jachetta on keyboards and vocals, Val Popovic on guitar, Dave Sousa on bass and David Hawkes on drums. The band was established in 2011 and House joined the band in 2017.
“All of these band members have toured internationally and have been with big named acts that have seen a lot of success but we all have the love of Journey’s music in common,” said House. “These are not only great musicians but also good people and also my friends.”
The band has booked over 30 shows each year with the exception of last year where they had a total of 10 due to the pandemic. They have performed shows throughout the 209 and beyond, bringing their passion and love for Journey to audiences all over.
“For me personally it is a dream come true,” stated House. “We have enjoyed a lot of success. The chemistry just seems to work between everybody. We are seasoned musicians which makes a big difference in making a band work. We have all pretty much experienced a well-rounded musical career. We have been in cover bands, original bands, tribute bands; this band here, we do everything. We consider ourselves a tribute concert show.”
Prior to joining Journey Revisited, House formed a different Journey tribute band in the Sacramento area. Not only is he a singer but he is also a songwriter. He said the other band members have other musical talents as well and have had other musical endeavors. Jachetta not only is a keyboardist but he is a voice over artist and a practical joker. Sousa is also a practical joker in the band that keeps the guys entertained.
House noted, “When you are on the road for an extended period of time you really appreciate their humor and the way that they can break us away from the monotony of being on the road or doing multiple shows in a row. So yes, it is very refreshing.”
Some of the members of the band have regular day jobs. Hawkes teaches drums and plays in another tribute band and other members perform in cover bands.
Through the years they have performed in Texas, Oregon, Nevada, Washington, and of course California. They have played at all kinds of venues from small bars, fairs, to festivals and theaters both indoors and out.
“Preparation of course would
include song studies, some rehearsals, also, I think more importantly for what we do as a tribute band would include really getting into character,” explained House on preparing for a show. “I call it musical theater and so does Val. You are transforming, you are getting into costume, you are putting on makeup and you are becoming something that the audience wants to experience. So that is what we do. We give them what they want.”
The band focuses on bringing the original Journey sound to audiences in the original keys.
“We do everything without the aid of backing vocal tracks,” added House. “We don’t use any of that. We don’t use any backing musical tracks. Everything is real, raw and organic.”
For many entertainers and artists, performing live has been a struggle through COVID with some doing shows virtually which is difficult for those that really enjoy the human contact and audience engagement. However, the drive-in movement has allowed musicians to entertain with a live performance while guests remain in their vehicles and adhere to COVID restrictions.
“COVID has been tough,” expressed House. “That (drive-in shows) kind of saved the day and I really think that we were on the cusp of history with drive-in shows because that was a brand-new thing. We played one of the first shows at the Alameda County Fair which was a drive-in show and it was a huge success. I see those continuing in the foreseeable future for sure.”
There have been several highlights performing in the tribute band for House including the travel and most importantly the people. He shared that a memorable moment was a show they played in San Mateo to crowd of about 9,000.
“I would say the human element makes it the most enjoyable thing,” remarked House. “I can’t imagine doing anything else in this life. We have all had different jobs but this is our passion. It is wonderful. I guess we are doing something right.”
With the state opening back up, Journey Revisited has already secured some dates in the 209 to perform live.
“Especially now people are hungry for music, they are hungry to get out and they are hungry for that escape,” said House. “I see that on the horizon. I am very optimistic.”
Journey Revisited will be performing in the 209 at Windmill Cove Bar & Grill in Stockton on June 13 right on the Delta, which House says is always a party.
They will hit the Waterfront Amphitheater on Aug. 14, performing at the Fiesta en el Calle Summer Concert Series in Stockton.
On Sept. 18, they will be at Lucca Winery Summer Concert Series in Ripon.
They have all social media platforms including Facebook as Journey Revisited band and a website journeyrevisited.net for more information.