Friday, April 5, 2013

Foreigner--I Want To Know What Love Is (1984)

     I've always thought of Foreigner as a 70's band, and why not. The band's first album was released in 1977 and immediately cracked the top ten with, "Feels Like The First Time"(#4) and "Cold As Ice"(#6) . The next year saw even great success with the release of "Double Vision"(#2)  and "Hot Blooded" (#3). They were one of the few 70's bands that had as great of success with FM fans as with top 40 (although by this time the lines between two were blurring)
     The six piece group,named because three of it's members (Mick Jones, Ian McDonald, Dennis Elliott ) were British, and three were American, (Lou Gramm, Al Greenwood, Ed Gagliardi), were riding high on the charts even as the next decade turned. The album, "Head Games" did well but the singles off of the album didn't do quite as well. The 1981 album, "4" was the first to go number one and the songs, "Urgent" (#4) and "Waiting For a Girl Like You" (#2) brought them back to top 40 prominence. By 1983, it began to look as if the group might be running out of steam. The musical landscape had changed drastically over the previous few years, but the first single from the 1984 album, "Agent Provocateur" changed all of that
      "I Want To Know What Love Is", written by Mick Jones, with assistance by Lou Gramm (exactly how much assistance depends on which artist you ask) and was a distinct turn from anything they had released before. The distinct vocals of Gramm were there, however the musical backing were almost dreamlike with backing by The New Jersey Mass Choir. The change of pace was enough not only to give Foreigner their first top 40 hit in two years, but their first and only #1.
      Although the last top 40 hits were in the late 80's, Foreigner continues to tour and record although Jones is the last remaining original member. In fact, in 2010 the song, "In Pieces" hit #21 on the Adult Contemporary charts. You can find more about them at: . Lou Gramm's website is here:

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