Neal Schon says he plans to revisit Journey's roots at his Bay Area fire-relief benefit Friday

Credit: Robert KnightThe intimate benefit concert that Journey guitarist Neal Schon organized to help those affected by the fires that recently devastated the Bay Area takes place this Friday at the San Francisco venue The Independent.

The sold-out show, which supports the North Bay Fire Relief Fund, has been dubbed “Neal Schon Journey Through Time,” and will feature Neal teaming up with ex-Journey members Gregg Rolie and Deen Castronovo, and Dead Daisies/Thin Lizzy bassist Marco Mendoza.

Schon tells ABC Radio that while organizing the concert, he talked with Rolie and Castronovo about putting together a set that goes “back to the roots” of Journey. Neal reports that they plan to “dive into the first, second, third [Journey albums], the early Gregg and Steve [Perry] era.”

He says the musicians he’ll be performing with at the benefit make up “a pretty bionic band,” adding, “We should be able to cover anything and have some fun with it.”

Schon tells ABC Radio that the fires weren’t far from where he lives in Marin County, California. “You drive by it and you see it, and it’s just devastating,” he notes.

Meanwhile, Schon also is looking forward to hitting the road with Journey on the band’s massive 2018 co-headlining tour with Def Leppard. The trek kicks off May 11 in Hartford, Connecticut, and is mapped out all the way through an October 6 show at The Forum in Inglewood, California.

Neal insists that recent conflicts he’s had with Journey keyboardist Jonathan Cain aren’t affecting his enthusiasm about playing for the band’s fans.

“The main thing is, we’re going on this tour, and we have tons of fans out there, and…that’s what it’s about to me,” Schon maintains. “It’s the great music that we’ve made together, and that people are still celebrating.”

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