Kevin Kane/Courtesy of HBOThe HBO special featuring highlights from the 2017 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony premieres Saturday at 8 p.m. ET. One of the most memorable moments of the ceremony was the appearance of Steve Perry, former lead singer of honorees Journey, who spoke exclusively with ABC Radio before the ceremony.

Perry, who left Journey in the late ’90s, didn’t sing at the ceremony, but he did greet his former band mates warmly on stage and made a heartfelt speech, sharing fond memories of his time with the group and thinking fans for their support.

“It was a complete family affair,” Perry told ABC Radio about the close-knit relationship between Journey, their crew and their management. He’s particularly grateful to manager, Herbie Herbert.

“He heard my demo tape and believed in me and told the band, ‘You gotta listen to this tape, I think this is the guy that should be the singer,'” Perry recalled. “[He] honestly made my dream come true, and I’m still living that dream today.”

The songs Perry recorded with Journey — including “Faithfully,” “Separate Ways,” “Open Arms,” “Who’s Cryin’ Now” and, of course, “Don’t Stop Believin'” — are still radio staples. He thinks that’s because the band was “honest with ourselves” and kept “reaching for…timeless performances.”

Steve notes, “I think that’s probably one of the biggest things that would separate Journey from a lot of the people at that time…we really reached for something different.”

Other honorees at the 2017 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony incuded Yes, Electric Light Orchestra, Pearl Jam, Joan Baez, Chic‘s Nile Rodgers and late rapper Tupac Shakur.

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