Journey’s keyboardist and guitarist Jonathan Cain clapped back at a cease-and-desist order from bandmate Neal Schon that was filed because he performed the group’s iconic hit song “Don’t Stop Believin” during an event in November that supported former President Trump.
According to Fox News Digital, Cain told Schon he should “look in the mirror” after accusing him of “causing harm to the Journey brand.”
Video on Twitter shows Cain, 71, playing the keyboard on stage at the Trump event while Marjorie Taylor Greene, Kimberly Guilfoyle, and Kari Lake sang along at the podium.
He has long been a member of Trump’s inner circle. His wife of eight years, Paula White, is a televangelist and Donald Trump’s spiritual advisor.
Cain, Schon, and estranged singer Steve Perry wrote the 1981 monster hit together.
Variety got a hold of the cease-and-desist letter which allegedly asserts that Cain’s performance of the song politicizes the band and “polarizes the band’s fans and outreach.”
“Although Mr. Cain is free to express his personal beliefs and associations, when he does that on behalf of Journey or for the band, such conduct is extremely deleterious to the Journey brand as it polarizes the band’s fans and outreach. Journey is not, and should not be, political,” the letter contended.
“Mr. Cain has no right to use Journey for politics. His politics should be his own personal business. He should not be capitalizing on Journey’s brand to promote his personal political or religious agenda to the detriment of the band,” it added.
If Cain wrote the song (even partially), he owns it. He can perform it as he sees fit. Neal Schon’s buddy, Sammy Hagar, performs his Van Halen catalog live to this day. He should know how this works.
— Bryan (@B_in_NC) December 23, 2022
Cain shot back on Thursday, stating that Schon’s behavior during the existence of the band has been far more harmful to its brand.
“I have watched him damage our brand for years and am a victim of both his–and his wife’s–bizarre behavior. Neal sued Live Nation twice, losing both times, and damaging our ability to ever work with them again; Neal outrageously tried to take away trademarks from Steve Perry; Neal and his wife continually insult the professionalism of numerous accountants, road managers, and management firms with endless legal threats and their bullying, toxic, and incoherent emails; Neal argues online with fans who don’t see eye to eye with him; and Neal and his wife recklessly spend Journey’s money until there is none left for operating costs,” Cain charged in his statement to Fox News.
He concluded by saying that “if anyone is destroying the Journey brand, it is Neal – and Neal alone.”
Cain wrote the song. He can perform it wherever he wants. As a guitarist, I love Schon and he’s one of my influences, but he’s always struck me that fame went to his head. And come on with the sunglasses already!
— David Simpson (@BlueGuitarGuy) December 23, 2022
A spokesman for Cain asserted that Schon is falsely claiming the song has been used at political rallies and is now “just frustrated he keeps losing in court,” according to Fox News.
The two bandmates have been on the outs for some time evidently. A legal battle recently ensued over Schon’s alleged denied access to the band’s American Express card and its records due to overspending.
Think about it~ it’s a SONG! He sang a SONG! A song he’s Sung for DECADES! I’d think he has as much right to Sing it as any of them. This sort of thing must END!! People are tired of seeing it.
— Vickie♥️Fisher (@VickieLFisherME) December 22, 2022
Cain’s attorney argued during the proceedings that Schon’s access to the corporate account was limited because he charged in excess of $1 million in “improper personal expenses” to the card.
Despite the two being at odds monetarily and politically, they are expected to perform together on the band’s upcoming Freedom Tour celebrating its 50th anniversary and newest album, according to Journey’s tour announcement.
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