Q&A with Journey tribute Faithfully Live's lead singer and founder Jeff Salado!

Faithfully Live is going to rock A Taste of Morgan Hill on September 28!

Want to know more about founder, manager and lead singer Jeff Salado and his Journey tribute sensation's evolution? Here's an interview by Music in the Air's Mark 'Fenny' Fenichel in advance of Saturday's show.

Q: What makes Faithfully Live different from other Journey Tribute bands?

A: Other than the obvious love for the music of Journey, I feel the passion and believe in recreating the feeling behind each song as if they were my own, we perform them with fidelity, not just play them. For myself, I try to do all that is embodied in the person I am honoring in my performance. Merely having the tone or just hitting the notes doesn't do it for me. I have to bring that true sound and spirit of Steve Perry to audiences. Long-time Journey fans know that the band achieved its heights live in concert over its studio recordings, and fans appreciate our take on that.

Q: Do you and the band ever get tired of playing the same Journey songs over and over?

A: No, and the reason being is it feels new each time to recreate these classic performances before the fresh faces before us at every show. It's exciting to bring this live experience to people who may not be steeped in-depth beyond Journey's "Dirty Dozen" (the familiar, radio hits, such as Don't Stop Believing, or Separate Ways). Seeing their reaction to these deeper cuts and live arrangements -- such as the grooving Loving You Is Easy -- is particularly gratifying.

Q: Are there other artist's songs in the set list or do you just stick to Journey music exclusively?

A: As the band's name implies, Faithfully Live is solely a tribute to the classic music of Journey. But there was a time in my past when I formed a top 40 band prior to focusing and founding my Journey tribute bands.

Q: I see in your bio you can sound like other artists when you do their music, but do you ever just want to be just you doing your own material and not a singer that sounds like someone else? 

A: I am definitely interested in writing and performing original music; I have delved into creating songs along the way with other musicians, including some initial writing with a band out in the Midwest. But I look forward to exploring this creative outlet with other musicians in order to spread my wings and share my range beyond my work as a tribute artist.

In terms of my evolution to establishing a Journey tribute, from 2002 to 2005, I created and performed with a top 40 cover band called Off-Kilter. We had gigs at a good number of corporate venues, and included a few Journey songs at that time in our set. The response to these was pretty overwhelming -- people came up to me after almost every show to say how much I sounded like Steve Perry! That made it easy to decide to take a crack at creating my first Journey tribute band, called Arrival (after the supergroup's 2001 album of the same name). This lineup performed under that name until mid-2011 when it was decided that to ignite more interest -- and underscore the ties to Journey's classic Steve Perry years -- to change the name to Journey Revisited. We toured around the country and made quite a mark -- many people still recall my performances delivered from 2011 to 2016 that helped establishing my band as the premier tribute to Journey at the time.

Under the Journey Revisited brand we performed in well-known casinos, our own California state fair (and many county fairs), the Colorado State Fair, and we have a strong following in the Pacific Northwest. As you'll often find in this industry, creative and business differences can arise, and it resulted in a parting of the ways in late 2016. But in 2017 I rebooted with new, talented musicians and created Faithfully Live -- a band that completely reflects my vision, with fresh passion for the compositions I love; and we're ready to deliver a live show that takes fans back in time to experience those landmark Perry years of Journey.

Q: Have you ever performed for any of the Journey members?

A: No but I'd love to jam with them -- and of course take the stage to honor the creators of those compositions.

Q: What is the biggest gig you ever played?

A: There are so many memorable ones that come to mind -- in Elko, Nevada, for instance, there were at least 18,000, and a gig at Thousand Oaks, around 10,000. But perhaps just as rewarding is the fact that, as Faithfully Live, we have established venue records -- such as we did in Copperopolis, with record-breaking consecutive gigs (2017/2018) at the Town Square music series, with the same kind of response at Los Gatos Music in the Park. And this year, our debut performance at ApCal in the Central Valley broke the record for a Friday show -- we oversold that show by a wide margin, and entertained a lot of new fans that danced all night. That really rocks our world.

Q: Is there anything you like about playing in Morgan Hill?

A: Yes, Morgan Hill events -- we've played the Mushroom Mardi Gras multiple seasons, and this year added A Taste of Morgan Hill -- they all have a nice family feel. The positive energy is infectious -- it's a very welcoming environment; I've enjoyed working with everyone I've had the pleasure of personally speaking with. We always look forward to returning to Morgan Hill!

A Taste of Morgan Hill

WHEN: Saturday, September 28, 8 PM-10 PM. Opening act Isaiah Pickett at 6PM.
WHERE: Historic Downtown Morgan Hill, Monterey between Dunne and Main, Morgan Hill, CA 95037
INFO: https://www.morganhill.org/taste-of-morgan-hill/ and https://www.facebook.com/events/1532194950256572

Disclaimer: Faithfully Live featuring Jeff Salado is not affiliated with, nor endorsed by the band Journey or any of its members.
Faithfully Entertainment, LLC, All rights reserved.