Jonathan Cain

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Jonathan Cain
Cain at BookExpo America in 2018, promoting Don't Stop Believin'
Cain at BookExpo America in 2018, promoting Don't Stop Believin'
Background information
Birth nameJonathan Leonard Friga
Born (1950-02-26) February 26, 1950 (age 73)[1]
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
GenresHard rock, pop rock, progressive rock, smooth jazz, CCM
Occupation(s)Musician, singer, songwriter
Instrument(s)Keyboards, guitar, vocals, harmonica
Years active1965–present
Member ofJourney
Formerly of

Jonathan Leonard Friga (born February 26, 1950), known professionally as Jonathan Cain, is an American musician, singer and songwriter best known as the keyboardist for Journey. He has also worked with the Babys and Bad English. Cain was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Journey in 2017.[2] He also maintains a solo career as a contemporary Christian artist.

Early life[edit]

Cain was born in Chicago to Leonard and Nancy Friga. At the age of eight, Cain began accordion lessons, and by the time he was in his teens, he was playing accordion and piano at parties and in clubs. He also plays guitar, bass, and harmonica. Cain is a survivor of the Our Lady of the Angels school fire of 1958, in which 92 students and 3 nuns died.[3] In 1968, Cain graduated from East Leyden High School[1] in the Chicago suburb of Franklin Park, Illinois and later attended the Chicago Conservatory of Music.


Cain in 1980

In 1976, Cain released his first record as the Jonathan Cain Band, Windy City Breakdown, on Bearsville Records. In 1979, he joined the Babys, appearing on their albums Union Jacks and On the Edge. In 1980, Cain left The Babys to join the rock band Journey, taking Gregg Rolie's place on keyboards.[4] Cain aided Journey's rise to the top of the charts with his first collaborations on the album Escape, composing and playing the piano on songs such as "Don't Stop Believin'", described by AllMusic as "one of the best opening keyboard riffs in rock".[5] Perhaps his most notable contribution was as sole author of the Journey ballad "Faithfully", a song about life on the road while in a band. Cain would go on to appear on at least 13 other Journey albums and compilations.

The song "Working Class Man" sung by Jimmy Barnes is one of Cain's compositions and is considered to be Barnes' signature song.

Cain reunited with former Babys bandmates John Waite and Ricky Phillips, fellow Journey bandmate Neal Schon, and future Journey drummer Deen Castronovo to form the band Bad English. The band released two albums before disbanding in the early 1990s.

In 1996, the Journey lineup from the album Escape was reunited. They reformed and recorded the album Trial by Fire. Steve Perry then left the band again in 1998, after suffering a hip injury while hiking in Hawaii, that required surgery. Journey has continued on with three subsequent lead singers, Steve Augeri from 1998 to 2006, Jeff Scott Soto from 2006 to 2007, and Arnel Pineda from 2007 to the present.

Cain is known to perform a piano solo at every Journey concert, usually right before the band performs "Open Arms." He started this tradition when he first joined the band in 1980.

In addition to his work with Journey, Cain has released eight solo albums and contributed to solo albums by fellow Journey member Neal Schon. His solo work includes a move to making Christian music since 2016.

Cain serves as the worship leader at City of Destiny, where his wife Paula White is the pastor.[6]

In May 2018, Cain became a published author with the release of his memoir, Don't Stop Believin': The Man, the Band, and the Song That Inspired Generations.[7]

Personal life[edit]

Cain has been married three times. His first wife was singer Tané McClure for whom he wrote the 1983 hit song Faithfully.

In 1989, he married his second wife, Elizabeth Yvette Fullerton, with whom he has three children: Madison (1993) and twins Liza and Weston (1996).[1] He and Elizabeth divorced at the end of 2014. Madison is married to Trev Lukather, Steve Lukather's son.[8]

In April 2015, he married minister Paula White.[9] This is the third marriage for both. They reside in Apopka, Florida.

Jonathan has two younger brothers, Thomas and Harold.[1]

Cain and David Kalmusky designed and built Addiction Sound, a recording studio in Nashville.

Cain is a devout Christian and his beliefs are seen in his work creating and sharing Christian music.[10]

In November 2022, Cain performed "Don't Stop Believin'", which he co-wrote, at a party at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate. Journey bandmate Neal Schon's attorney sent Cain a letter accusing him of damaging the "Journey brand" by performing at a political event, and asking him to refrain from representing Journey at such events.[11]

Solo discography[edit]

Cain performing in 2007
  • "Til It's Time to Say Goodbye"/"Ladies' Night" (1975) October Records [OCT 1001-AS(BS)].
  • Windy City Breakdown (1977) Bearsville/Wounded Bird Records.
  • Back to the Innocence (1995) Intersound Records.
  • Piano with a View (1995) Higher Octave Records.
  • Body Language (1997) Higher Octave Records.
  • For a Lifetime (1998) Higher Octave Records.
  • Namaste (2001) Wildhorse Records.
  • Anthology (2001) One Way Records.
  • Animated Movie Love Songs (2002) One Way Records.
  • Bare Bones (2004) AAO Records.
  • Where I Live (2006) AAO Records.
  • What God Wants to Hear (2016) Identity Records.
  • Unsung Noel (2017)
  • The Songs You Leave Behind (2018)
  • More Like Jesus (2019)
  • Piano Worship (2020)
  • Freedom In Your Grace (2020)
  • Arise (2022)
  • Christmas is Love (2022)


He has received two BMI songwriter awards, both for songs co-written with Steve Perry, "Open Arms" and "Who's Crying Now". The Journey song, "When You Love a Woman", which he co-wrote with Perry and Schon, was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1997.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "Jonathan Cain Biography". 2003. Archived from the original on August 20, 2006. Retrieved July 7, 2020.
  2. ^ "Inductees: Journey". Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Retrieved December 20, 2016.
  3. ^ "The Jonathan Cain Picture Pages". Retrieved June 6, 2017.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ Daniels 2011, pp. 48–51.
  5. ^ "Don't Stop Believin' - Journey - Song Info - AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved June 2, 2018.
  6. ^ "Jonathan Cain". Paula White Ministries. Retrieved August 25, 2020.
  7. ^ Greene, Andy (April 26, 2018). "Journey Keyboardist Jonathan Cain's New Memoir: 10 Things We Learned". Rolling Stone. Retrieved August 25, 2020.
  8. ^ "Madison Friga-Cain and Trev Lukather".
  9. ^ "Megachurch pastor Paula White marries 'Don't Stop Believin' rocker Jonathan Cain - Christian News on Christian Today". Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  10. ^ "Rock Star Jonathan Cain's Journey to Christ". CBN News. February 14, 2017. Retrieved August 25, 2020.
  11. ^ Sisario, Ben (December 22, 2022). "Journey Guitarist to Bandmate Who Played for Trump: No Political Gigs". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved December 22, 2022.


  • Daniels, Neil (2011). The Untold Story of Journey. London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-1-84938-657-9.
  • Cain, Jonathan (2018). Don't Stop Believin': The Man, the Band, and the Song that Inspired Generations. Grand Rapids: Zondervan. ISBN 9780310351955.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Stevie Roseman
Journey keyboardist
1980 – present
Succeeded by