Journey keyboardist Jonathan Cain talks about baseball's connection with 'Don't Stop Believin''
It's only fitting that the ultimate song about comebacks has enjoyed a renaissance of its own.
You'd have to go back almost four decades to find the last time Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" actually topped current Top 40 lists, but in terms of songs whose legacies go on and on (and on and on), the tune still resonates to this day -- especially in baseball circles.
"It's great to still be relevant after all these years," said Jonathan Cain, Journey's longtime keyboardist.
Cain, whose love for baseball seems to match his love for music, just completed a two-night concert series at the Toyota Center in Houston, where Journey teamed with another popular band from the '80s, Def Leppard, for what was surely a nostalgic trip down Hair Band Lane.
Cain used his day off in Houston on Tuesday to hang out at Minute Maid Park. He toured the visiting clubhouse, took in batting practice on the field and watched the Twins-Astros game from the stands.
The visiting clubhouse at Minute Maid Park, in fact, could be at least partially credited with the resurgence of "Don't Stop Believin." In 2005, the song became a rallying cry for the White Sox. Former Journey lead singer Steve Perry, having gotten wind of this, was actually a part of the celebration when the Sox won the World Series, singing along with the team to "Don't Stop Believin'" in the visitors' clubhouse (which, coincidentally, is run by a man named Steve Perry).
"They got our lead singer out of retirement to go join them in their parade," Cain said. "It was good to see him out there in public again -- we thought he had gone recluse on us, and then he shows up to the White Sox celebration, singing "Don't Stop Believin.'"
The song is also a regular feature at San Francisco Giants games, which makes sense, given the band originated in the Bay Area. During the postseason in 2014, Perry (the lead singer, not the clubhouse manager) was in the stands to lead the crowd in an epic karaoke-style singalong.
Other stadiums have played "Don't Stop Believin'" as well, but in fairness, it'll probably always be tied the closest to San Francisco, given Journey's ties there, and Perry's unabashed love for the team.
"We did something right with that song," Cain said. "I think it gives permission to dream. It tells people, hey, you're not stuck where you think you are. You can get overcome anything. They're not who they say you are. If you can dream it, you can do it. That's the beauty of that song."