Journey Has Fired Ross Valory AND Steve Smith

By jsmith on March 4, 2020
NEW YORK, NY – JULY 29: (L-R) keyboard player Jonathan Cain, guitar player Neal Schon, singer Arnel Pineda, drummer Deen Castronovo, and bass player Ross Valory of the band Journey performs at the 2011 Today Summer Concert series at Rockefeller Plaza on July 29, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

Bassman Ross Valory and Drummer Steve Smith are OUT of the band.

By Jon Smith:

Valory and Smith have both been accused by Journey of launching an “ill-conceived corporate coup d’état”  to take control of the band’s name.

According to court documents filed in the Superior Court of Contra Costa County, Calif., by a lawyer representing  Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain, Valory and Smith attempted to gain control of Nightmare Productions, who hold rights to the group’s name.

The lawsuit states that “in 1998, Schon, Cain, and Steve Perry entered into a written agreement providing Schon and Cain the sole, exclusive, irrevocable right to control the Journey Mark, including the Journey name. They are, therefore, authorized to perform together as Journey, with or without anyone else.”

“Defendants Smith and Valory were members of Journey at various times during the band’s history,” the statement continues. “Collectively, they only have a very few song credits on Journey albums. Nevertheless, they were compensated generously for many years. Recently, however, defendants attempted to launch an ill-conceived corporate coup d’état to assume control of Nightmare Productions because they incorrectly believe that Nightmare Productions controls the Journey name and Mark.”

It goes on to say that the “campaign to take control of Nightmare Productions in December 2019 by conspiring to oust Schon and Cain from control.”

Journey is also asking the two for 10 MILLLLIOON dollars in damages.  It’s also worth noting that both Valory and Smith were kicked out of the band back in 1985 over creative differences.  We’ll keep you posted.


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