Steve Augeri is an American rock singer who is widely recognized as the lead vocalist for the rock band Journey, which delivered some of the most well-known songs in modern rock music. Versatile as a singer, he combines numerous musical influences to create an original melodic rock style. Prior to joining Journey, he founded the band Tall Stories, which shook up the melodic rock landscape and drew the attention of listeners. Additionally, he was a member of the hard rock band Tyketto, with whom he released the album ‘Shine’. Steve Augeri joined Journey as the fourth lead vocalist, attributing his passion for music to his father, but quickly became the first lead vocalist, displacing Steve Perry. He made his debut with the band by recording the hit song “Remember Me” for the soundtrack album of the seven-time platinum-certified film “Armageddon.” He traveled with the band for eight years in an effort to restore its status as one of America’s top melodic rock bands. After leaving Journey, he established the supergroup Ünderworld.
Youth and Early Life
Steve Augeri was born on January 30, 1959, as the son of Joseph and Emma in Brooklyn, New York City, United States of America. He was reared in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bensonhurst.
His father and many years of listening to Sinatra, R&B, Soul, and Country music on an old Emerson clock radio contributed to his love and enthusiasm for music. He also expresses appreciation to his elementary school music instructor, Fredrick Torregrossa, who spotted his musical skill and encouraged him to develop his singing potential.
He studied woodwinds at the High School of Music and Art in New York City. Soon after realizing his affection for classical music, he decided to switch to bassoon. He also attended the French Woods Festival for the Performing Arts summer camps, which he described as a wonderful experience. There, he oversaw the Rock Band classes for children.
Due to financial restrictions, he dropped out of college and formed a rock and roll band. Steve Augeri remarked in a subsequent interview, “I had a music addiction, and I did whatever I could to feed it.” Consequently, he worked as a bartender and as a waiter while pursuing a career in music.
Steve Augeri’s Career
During the early years of his musical career, Steve Augeri performed as a session vocalist for some time. Michael Schenker of UFO and Scorpions fame engaged him as a background vocalist in 1984.
While hunting for a new guitar at Manny’s Music on 48th St. in New York City, Steve met guitarist Jack More. Together, they established Tall Stories, a band consisting of Steve on vocals, Jack on guitar, Kevin Totoian on bass, and Tom DeFaria on drums.
Several times every week, Tall Stories performed at The Bitter End on Bleeker Street, where Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder, and George Carlin have also played. They worked on their future record in the interim.
Tall Stories gained to notoriety after the release of their self-titled album on Epic Records, an American major record company owned by Sony Music Entertainment, in 1991. The group’s original music was influenced by a variety of genres, spanning from Blues to Rock, Funk to Punk, and Country to Reggae, and altered the rock landscape. Consequently, their music was distinctive and distinct from the typical rock genre.
Despite garnering an enormous welcome from fans and critics, the changing music scene in the United States prompted the band to go into hibernation after their 1995 New Year’s Eve concert in Paris.
Augeri formed a friendship with Brooke St. James of the hard melodic rock band Tyketto and contributed songs to the group. The band quickly invited him to become their lead singer.
The trio released the album ‘Shine’ in 1995 and embarked on a European tour, which led to the 1996 publication of the CD ‘Take Out & Served Live’
After the birth of his kid in 1996, he decided to stay closer to home and accepted a position as the maintenance manager for GAP’s network of stores in New York City. He was employed at GAP for one year.
After leaving GAP in 1997, Augeri ventured back into the music industry. Following an introduction by guitarist Joe Cefalu, Steve received a phone call from Journey’s Jonathan Cain and Neal Schon, who gave him an audition.
Steve Augeri was appointed Journey’s fourth lead vocalist in 1998. When Steve Perry quit the group, he was promoted to lead vocalist. He traveled with the band for the following eight years, establishing them as one of America’s best rock bands.
With the recording of “Remember Me,” he made his debut with the band. The live DVD of their Las Vegas performance, titled ‘Journey 2001,’ was released in December 2000 and was certified platinum.
The quartet released the album ‘Arrival’ in 2001 and the EP ‘Red 13’ in 2002. Released in 2005, ‘Generations’ was his final studio album with Journey. In 2006, he was forced to leave the group owing to vocal difficulties he had been experiencing since 2003. There were reports that Steve had been lip-syncing during live performances for years prior to his departure.
Around this time, members of ‘Tall Stories’ reassembled, and the band’s 2008 revival was referred to by its admirers as the group’s second chapter. In October 2008, it performed at Firefest V in Nottingham, United Kingdom. Their performance comprised songs from their debut album as well as new songs from their forthcoming album, ‘Skyscraper,’ which was published by Frontiers Records on January 23, 2009.
The music and tracks on the album ‘Skyscraper’ were melodically rich and varied. From the first track, ‘Tomorrow,’ to the last, ‘You Shall be Free,’ the album is a “musical tapestry” of many hues and textures, according to reviewers. Steve Augeri remarked, “Although the period between the first and second albums was too lengthy, fate and timing have allowed us to reunite and make music that inspires us individually and collectively.”
Steve Augeri issued a handful of singles during the subsequent several years. The singles ‘Riverside’ and ‘Photograph’ were released in 2010 and 2011, respectively. In 2012, the single ‘Hours in the Day’ was released, and in 2013, the singles ‘For The Rest Of My Life’ and ‘Behind The Sun’ were issued. He published ‘Home Again’ in 2014.
In 2014, he and guitarist Kee Marcello, bassist Svante Henryson, and drummer Virgil Donati established the supergroup Ünderworld.
Steve’s Major Effort
Steve Augeri’s work on the album Tall Stories’ is well-known. When the album was released in 1991, the US music scene was undergoing a transformation. As a result, the melodic rock scene embraced ‘Tall Stories’ as a breath of fresh air. The innovative record caused a sensation among rock enthusiasts and gained critical accolades almost immediately.
Awards & Achievements
At the 1992 New York Music Awards, ‘Tall Stories’ was nominated for Best Debut Album, and Steve Augeri was nominated for Best Debut Male Vocalist.
Steve’s Personal Facts
Their son Adam was born in 1996 after Steve Augeri married Lydia Cirillo. Through personal appearances and live performances, he and his wife support numerous organizations, including Journey to the Cure (Breast Cancer Foundation), Little Baby Face Foundation, Diamond Angels (Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital), and March of Dimes.
Estimated Net Worth
American singer, songwriter, and musician Steve Augeri has a net worth of $6 million. Steve Augeri was born in January 1959 in Brooklyn, New York.
Among the rock bands in which he has participated are Tall Stories, Tyketto, and Journey. With Tall Stories, he was featured on the 1991 and 2009 albums titled Tall Stories and Skyscraper, respectively.