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Filipino Arnel Pineda is best known as the new lead singer for the rock group Journey.
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Arnel Pineda was born on September 5, 1967 in the Philippines. After a series of unfortunate events in his childhood, Pineda found success in Asia as the front man for the group The Zoo. In 2007, he was discovered by Journey guitarist Neal Schon, after a series of YouTube videos were posted of him covering American songs, including the famous hit, "Dont Stop Believin'." In December 2007,
Pineda became the new lead singer of Journey. His is noted for having a strikingly similar sound to former Journey front man Steve Perry.
Singer-songwriter Arnel Pineda was born on September 5, 1967, in Sampaloc, Manila, in the Philippines. Throughout his childhood, Pineda endured grave misfortune. When he was just 13 years old, his mother, who was 35 at the time, passed away after a long battle with heart disease. Her medical costs left the family in serious debt, and Pineda's father could no longer provide for Pineda and his three younger brothers, Russmon, Roderick and Joselito.
While relatives were able to take in his brothers, Pineda was left on his own. He spent the next few years homeless, often sleeping outside in public parks and scraping for any food or water that he could afford. When possible, he would stay at a friend's house, who offered him a cot outside. Eventually, Pineda was forced to quit school and take up odd jobs collecting scrap metal and bottles at the pier and selling newspapers to support his family.
Pineda's love of music started at a young age. He began singing at just five years old, and had entered many singing contests as a child. In 1982, when he was 15, Pineda was introduced to a local band called Ijos, and was encouraged by his friends to try out as their new lead singer. He sang the Beatles' "Help" and Air Supply's "Making Love Out Of Nothing At All." Although they were concerned with his lack of training, Ijos members were wowed by Pineda's powerful voice, and took him on as the new front man of the band. One of the band member's friends even offered to pay Pineda's salary, 35 pesos a night, out of his own pocket, and Pineda was offered a tiny room to sleep under the guitarist's front stairs.
In 1986, some members of Ijos joined together to form the new pop-rock band Amo. The group found success covering songs by hit groups Heart, Queen and Journey. In 1988, they turned heads when they won the Philippines' leg of the Yamaha World Band Explosion Contest. Although they were disqualified in the finals due to a technicality, the event was broadcast on TV in Asia, widening their fanbase. The band continued performing at popular clubs and arenas around the Philippines.
In 1990, the members re-grouped yet again, under the new name Intensity Five, and re-entered the contest. The band came in as runner up and Pineda won the Best Vocalist Award. After a series of unfortunate health problems in the early '90s, including the brief loss of his voice, Pineda re-emerged in 1999 with a new solo album with Warner Brothers. The self-titled album had several hits in Asia.
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