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Foreigner

While quite a few arena rock acts of the '70s found the transformation into the '80s quite difficult, several acts continued to flourish and enjoyed some of their biggest commercial success: Journey, Styx, REO Speedwagon, and especially Foreigner. Foreigner's leader from the beginning has been British guitarist Mick Jones, who first broke into the music biz as a "hired gun" of sorts, appearing on recordings by George Harrison and Peter Frampton, and as part of a later-day version of hard rockers Spooky Tooth. By the mid-'70s, Jones had relocated to New York City, where he was a brief member of the Leslie West Band and served as an A&R man for a record company. But it wasn't long before Jones felt the urge to be part of another rock outfit as he sought to put together a band that would be able to combine elements of rock, progressive, R&B, and pop into a single, cohesive style.

Jones soon assembled a group consisting of ex-King Crimson sax player Ian McDonald and ex-Ian Hunter drummer Dennis Elliot (both of whom were British), along with New York musicians Al Greenwood (keyboards), Ed Gagliardi (bass), and Lou Gramm (vocals), the latter of which was previously a member of an obscure '70s outfit called Black Sheep. Jones found immediate songwriting chemistry with Gramm (one of the first songs they wrote together was the eventual hit "Cold As Ice"), resulting in the newly formed band taking the name Foreigner and signing a recording contract with Atlantic Records. Foreigner's self-titled debut was issued in 1977 and became an immediate hit on the strength of the hit singles "Feels Like the First Time," "Long, Long Way From Home," and the aforementioned "Cold As Ice," as the album would eventually go platinum five times over.

Foreigner avoided the dreaded sophomore slump with an even stronger follow-up release, 1978's Double Vision, which spawned such further hit singles as "Hot Blooded" and its title track, and the album stayed in the Top Ten for a solid six months. As a result, the album's success established the sextet as an arena headliner and would go on to become Foreigner's best-selling album of their career (selling seven million copies in the U.S. alone by 2001). The group's third release overall, Head Games, followed in 1979 and marked the first of many subsequent lineup changes for the group, as Gagliardi was replaced by ex-Peter Frampton and Roxy Music bassist Rick Wills. While the album was another big seller and turned out to be their most straight-ahead musically, both Gramm and Jones felt that the album failed to break any new ground, something that they sought to correct on their next album.

The band's lineup was cut back to just a quartet consisting of Jones, Gramm, Elliot, and Wills as super-producer Mutt Lange (fresh off late-'70s success with AC/DC) was enlisted to oversee the proceedings. The ploy worked and the resulting 1981 release, 4, was another massive seller, spawning such further hit singles as "Urgent" (which featured a blazing sax solo from Motown vet Junior Walker), "Jukebox Hero," and the power ballad "Waiting for a Girl Like You." Although the latter tune was a massive hit, it confused some of the band's following as to whether Foreigner was a hard rock band or balladeers. In 1982, a stopgap best-of set, Records, was released and featured ten of band's biggest hit singles, remaining a steady seller to this day (becoming Foreigner's second album to achieve sales of seven million by 2001).

It took Foreigner three years to complete a follow-up to 4 with Agent Provocateur being issued in 1984. The band made the transition to the MTV video age without a hitch with the over-the-top, gospel-inflected ballad "I Want to Know What Love Is" (which featured the New Jersey Mass Choir) becoming one of the biggest MTV and radio hits that year. But despite the single's success, there was a noticeable dip in sales for Agent Provocateur when compared to their earlier albums due to the fact that the album wasn't as focused and strong overall as their previous recordings. After a mammoth nine-month tour wrapped up a year later, both Jones and Gramm focused on non-Foreigner projects during 1986. Jones produced Bad Company's Fame and Fortune and co-produced Van Halen's hit debut recording with Sammy Hagar, 5150, while Gramm worked on a solo debut. The release of both Gramm's solo album, Ready or Not, as well as Foreigner's sixth studio album overall, Inside Information, came in 1987. While both were successful and spawned Top Ten hits (Gramm with "Midnight Blue" and Foreigner with "Say You Will"), tension between Gramm and Jones came to a head regarding the singer's desire to focus on his solo career, which led to Gramm's split from Foreigner in 1989.

The same year as his split from Foreigner, Gramm issued his second solo album, Long Hard Look, which proved to be not as successful as its predecessor, while Jones produced Billy Joel's Storm Front and issued a star-studded self-titled solo debut. Jones, Elliot, and Wills tried to keep Foreigner afloat with a new singer, Johnny Edwards, issuing a largely ignored album in 1991, Unusual Heat, while Gramm fared no better with a new outfit, Shadow King, issuing a forgotten self-titled debut the same year. Seeing the error in their split, both Jones and Gramm listened to the advice of Atlantic Records and reunited for the recording of three all-new tracks to be included on a more extensive "hits" collection. Issued in 1992, the 17-track The Very Best...And Beyond was Foreigner's most commercially successful release in several years along with the band's first live release, Classic Hits Live, issued a year later.

The Gramm/Jones reunion soon turned permanent and new members Bruce Turgon (bass) and Jeff Jacobs (keyboards) were welcomed on board. The latest version of Foreigner issued an all-new studio recording in 1995, Mr. Moonlight, which failed to return the group to the top of the charts. Foreigner remained a popular concert attraction, but the band's future was thrust into doubt in 1997 when Gramm was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Luckily, the tumor was non-cancerous and was removed shortly thereafter. Gramm's recovery was slow and painful, but by 1999, the singer was well enough for Foreigner to team up with Journey for a summer tour. The early 21st century saw the release of several archival collections courtesy of the Rhino label: a pair of additional collections, Jukebox Heroes: The Foreigner Anthology and Complete Greatest Hits, as well as reissues of the group's self-titled debut and 4, both of which included extra bonus tracks. Can't Slow Down, a three-disc set that included a new studio album, a disc of remixed versions of the band's biggest hits, and a DVD documentary, arrived in 2009. ~ Greg Prato
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Feels Like The First Time

Disc 1

1. Long, Long Way From Home (Acoustic)

2. Cold As Ice (Acoustic)

3. The Flame Still Burns (Acoustic)

4. Double Vision (Acoustic)

5. Fool For You Anyway (Acoustic)

6. Say You Will (Acoustic)

7. Starrider (Acoustic)

8. Waiting For A Girl Like You (Acoustic)

9. Feels Like The First Time (Acoustic)

10. Juke Box Hero (Acoustic)

11. That's All Right (Acoustic)

Disc 2

1. Save Me

2. Feels Like The First Time

3. Cold As Ice

4. Long, Long Way From Home

5. Hot Blooded

6. Double Vision

7. Head Games

8. Dirty White Boy

9. Urgent

10. Waiting For A Girl Like You

11. I Want To Know What Love Is

12. Juke Box Hero

Disc 3
x

Track List: No End In Sight: The Very Best Of Foreigner

Disc 1

1. Feels Like The First Time

2. Long, Long Way From Home

3. Cold As Ice

4. Headknocker

5. Starrider

6. Double Vision

7. Blue Morning, Blue Day

8. Hot Blooded

9. Dirty White Boy

10. Head Games

11. Women

12. Night Life

13. Break It Up

14. Juke Box Hero

15. Urgent

16. Waiting For A Girl Like You

Disc 2

1. I Want To Know What Love Is

2. Down On Love

3. Reaction To Action

4. That Was Yesterday

5. Say You Will

6. I Don't Want To Live Without You

7. Can't Wait

8. Tooth And Nail

9. Heart Turns To Stone

11. I'll Fight For You

12. Until The End Of Time

13. Too Late

14. Say You Will (Live)

15. Starrider (Live)

16. Juke Box Hero / Whole Lotta Love (Live)

x

Track List: Inside Information

1. Heart Turns To Stone

2. Can't Wait

3. Say You Will

4. I Don't Want To Live Without You

5. Counting Every Minute

6. Inside Information

7. The Beat Of My Heart

8. Face To Face

9. Out Of The Blue

10. A Night To Remember

x

Track List: Agent Provocateur

1. Tooth And Nail

2. That Was Yesterday

3. I Want To Know What Love Is

4. Growing Up the Hard Way

5. Reaction To Action

6. Stranger in My Own House

7. A Love In Vain

8. Down On Love

9. Two Different Worlds

10. She's Too Tough

x

Track List: Records

1. Cold As Ice

2. Double Vision

3. Head Games

4. Waiting For A Girl Like You

5. Feels Like The First Time

6. Urgent

7. Dirty White Boy

8. Juke Box Hero

9. Long, Long Way From Home

10. Hot Blooded (Live)

x

Track List: 4 (Remastered)

1. Night Life

2. Juke Box Hero

3. Break It Up

4. Waiting For A Girl Like You

5. Luanne

6. Urgent

7. I'm Gonna Win

8. Woman In Black

9. Girl On The Moon

10. Don't Let Go

x

Track List: Head Games

1. Dirty White Boy

2. Love On the Telephone

3. Women

4. I'll Get Even With You

5. Seventeen

6. Head Games

7. The Modern Day

8. Blinded By Science

9. Do What You Like

10. Rev On The Red Line

x

Track List: Double Vision

1. Hot Blooded

2. Blue Morning, Blue Day

3. You're All I Am

4. Back Where You Belong

5. Love Has Taken Its Toll

6. Double Vision

7. Tramontane

8. I Have Waited So Long

9. Lonely Children

10. Spellbinder

11. Hot Blooded (Live)

x

Track List: Foreigner

1. Feels Like The First Time

2. Cold As Ice

3. Starrider

4. Headknocker

5. The Damage Is Done

6. Long, Long Way From Home

7. Woman Oh Woman

8. At War With The World

9. Fool For You Anyway

10. I Need You

x

Track List: I Want To Know What Love Is (Feat. Nate Ruess)

1. I Want To Know What Love Is (Feat. Nate Ruess)

x

Track List: I Want To Know What Love Is: The Ballads

1. I Want To Know What Love Is

2. In Pieces

3. Waiting For A Girl Like You

4. When It Comes To Love

5. Feels Like The First Time (Acoustic)

6. Say You Will (Acoustic)

7. The Flame Still Burns (Acoustic)

8. Save Me

9. I Can't Give Up

10. Fool For You Anyway

11. As Long As I Live

12. I'll Be Home Tonight

13. Double Vision (Acoustic)

14. Long, Long Way From Home

x

Track List: Juke Box Heroes

1. Save Me

2. Feels Like The First Time

3. Cold As Ice

4. Long, Long Way From Home

5. Hot Blooded

6. Double Vision

7. Head Games

8. Dirty White Boy

9. Urgent

10. Waiting For A Girl Like You

11. I Want To Know What Love Is

12. Juke Box Hero

x

Track List: The Best Of 4 And More

3. Urgent (Live)

4. Waiting For A Girl Like You (Live)

7. Say You Will (Live)

8. Feels Like The First Time (Live)

9. Cold As Ice (Live)

10. Hot Blooded (Live)

11. I Want To Know What Love Is (Live)

12. Juke Box Hero (Live)

x

Track List: The Best Of Foreigner 4 & More (Live)

1. Night Life (Live)

2. Woman In Black (Live)

3. Urgent (Live)

4. Waiting For A Girl Like You (Live)

5. Break It Up (Live)

6. Girl On The Moon (Live)

7. Say You Will (Live)

8. Feels Like The First Time (Live)

9. Cold As Ice (Live)

10. Hot Blooded (Live)

11. I Want To Know What Love Is (Live)

12. Juke Box Hero (Live)

Similar Artists

Comments

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Always loved these guys. Timeless music.
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our love will always be real my darling Mike your mimi
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Awesome music
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Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. If you ignore this you will have bad luck. Now don't stop reading this. Put this on at least 5 songs in the next 143 minutes. When done press space and your crushes name will appear in big letters.
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sexyladies19 6 9 6 9
❤❤❤❤❤
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I want to give you my special kisses and a one arm hugs my lover Mike you give me your kisses and your special hugs both arms your mimi
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I will show you what love is my best friend you will know what love is when we are through my Mike your mimi
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The best music ever pure love❤️����
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sandymcadams 5 4
❤❤❤❤❤
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rsauro5
Love y'all I love I wanna know what love is
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Please play Foreigner with only Lou Gramm on vocals! Thank you
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kdpflugrad
Foreigner rocks
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enjoying this song
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I wanna feel loved
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mysteriousst r a n g e r 5 4 5
❤❤❤❤❤
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leave your key with me I will stay all night my baby Mike your Mimi tell me what direction to go mimi
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we need each other so much it will be beautiful my Mike love mimi
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I will show you what to show me what love is baby Mike love you mimi
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alexandraabe l l a 1 7
❤❤❤❤❤
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hbrus
Not sure I've even been in love, love; lust and like, but true love - haven't got a clue.
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sheffield57
Nite
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sheffield57
Yes fell deeply in love. Wow said I would seek and happened. Misteriously . . .
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I'm always ready for your loving anytime you want to give me my Mike love mimi
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When you love someone it feels so right!!❤❤❤
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Hell yes it does baby!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! !
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Another beautiful LOVE BALLAD from FOREIGNER... . W h a t a BLESSING to be in LOVE with the perfect lyrics to express your LOVE to your special ELOVE.♡`♡`♡
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heavymetal35 9
❤❤❤❤❤
Report as inappropriate
play new riders of the purple surge
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I wanna know what love is<3
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fidelperezda r i a s
Urgent...Eme r g e n c y ! ! !
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Because
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lizabdiaz
♡♡♡is?
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Why can't I go into a comments section and not see some unrelated comment about politics?
Report as inappropriate
kwtkdmom
Saw Foreigner last year and I was kind of disappointed . The new singer is not all that and he cursed alot (there was a group of young kids on the stage singing with them for I Wanna Know What Love Is). He seemed to be pretty full of himself. I miss Lou Gramm. Thankful I got to see them a few times when he was with them. I enjoy his solo music as well.
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Can't ever get better than these years of music
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Juke box hero!!!!
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your heat made warm all over let it happen again mimi
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I want to know what Love is
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Juke Box Hero
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Today's world doesn't know what love is...only hate, evil, and disrespect ��
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80's dance party kickass station of love!!! USA baby
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trump will bring back 80's goodness. hillary will bring hellhounds and endless civil war of cultures.. end the without God bs.. America was created under God and in God we trust or we perish into the ashes of history
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awesome tunes from the 80's nonstop!!!
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who the heck is mimi? where r u mimi? good luck mike!!!
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can't we show each other to show what love is never lose are way again I will show you my love my babe Mimi mike
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come show me love that I need I'm not daddy I will save your love for me too any night we can make a secret rondavoue right be wrong spelling you get my point Mimi mike
Report as inappropriate
Great song. Haven't heard Jukebox hero in a long time.
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we will climb this mountain we will climb and the ocean we will swim the ocean and I will show you love and you show me love Mimi Mike it's real love we won't be perfect we will work to make it what we want Mimi Mike we will sing to each other too Mimi mike
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we won't be changing just for the better Mimi and mike
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alexandraabe l l a 1 7
❤❤❤❤❤
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