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MyxClusive: Journey: Don't Stop Believin'
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May 23, 2012

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Arnel Pineda. The world now knows of him as the lead singer of the legendary American rock band, Journey. However, not many are familiar with the hardships he faced growing up in Manila before that life-changing day when Neal Schon discovered him on YouTube. "Don't Stop Believin': Everyman's Journey" is a film directed by Ramona Diaz that documents Arnel's arduous path, embodying the word "journey".

"There were days where I was really, really hungry and then I would come to my friends just to be able to eat...Or sing for my food or ask relatives if I could sleep outside the door. Until one day, my friend told me, "Why don't you just use your voice to survive?" says Pineda.

And that's exactly what Arnel did. Having been with several bands over a 25-year span in Manila, it wasn't until his band, Zoo, posted a cover of Journey's "Faithfully" on YouTube when Schon found him.

Ramona Diaz, an award-winning Filipino-American filmmaker, was moved to produce a feature length documentary on Journey, with Arnel being their new lead singer, and embarked on a 4-year journey documenting the band.

"They were inclined to say no and I can see why. Journey is a big act, so we wanted to go on the road with them which was difficult...we were one other thing to take care of, so it was tough in the beginning. But at the end of the day, they saw the value. It's such a rare story," says Diaz.

Their thoughts on having a film about them:

"I think the story itself is quite an amazing story and Arnel...and everything he's come from and where he is now. And how Journey was in a certain place without him and where we are now... I think it's worthy of being a film," says Neal Schon (all guitars and backing vocals).

"For the most part, we are used to cameras and that kind of exposure. But it was thorough. Lasted over a couple of years now, but she got every angle of approach there is," says Ross Valory (bass and backing vocals).

"Somehow I was questioning myself like, "Can I really take this camera poking in my face all the time?" In the end, I guess it was cool because there is a good message that needs to be sent out there - shared to underdogs or aspiring artists like me who has been waiting for the longest time for a golden opportunity. I think it's great that we did this," says Pineda.

"Don't Stop Believin': Everyman's Journey" is being shown in select theaters and film festivals across the globe. To follow the film's journey, visit

"We're hoping that it reaches a wide audience," says Diaz. "Both for journey and non-journey fans. It is a story of hope, of resilience...of pure unadulterated talent that rises to the top everytime. That's the story and...don't stop believin' right?"

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