Neal Schon and Michaele Salahi on the Silverdocs red carpet Monday. (Scott Selman )

Neal Schon says he didn’t blow off a Silverdocs film festival audience when he left abruptly after the screening of a new Journey rockumentary Monday night. The band’s lead guitarist told us Wednesday he told the filmmakers all along he wouldn’t participate in a panel discussion about “Don’t Stop Believin’: Everyman’s Journey,” and doesn’t know why festival organizers were informed otherwise.

(A Silverdocs rep says the band’s people approved press material describing the night’s expected line-up.)

Schon said he wanted to avoid any heckling or hassling of his controversial lady love, Michaele Salahi — plus, he just doesn’t like Q&As. “I was never comfortable sitting on stool, having people ask me questions, without a guitar in my hand,” the veteran rock star said. “I have tinnitus, I can barely hear what the people are saying.”

Filmmakers Berlinger, left, and Sinofsky, right, with Baldwin at Silverdocs festival. (Courtesy of Silverdocs)

Read earlier: What a Journey! Michaele Salahi and Neal Schon walk red carpet at Silverdocs, bail out early, 6/19/12

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