2/12/19 – Foreigner “I Want To Know What Love Is”
Naturally, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about love songs. With Valentine’s Day coming on Thursday, we’re playing “Love Song Dedications” from our listeners this week (there’s still time to get yours in!)For some reason, the song I woke up with this morning was “I Want To Know What Love Is” by Foreigner. The band was formed back in 1976, made up of Englishmen and Americans, and that’s why they called themselves Foreigner. They had a whole bunch of popular songs in the late 70’s and in the 80’s, including “Hot Blooded,” “Cold As Ice,” “Urgent,” “Double Vision” and “Feels Like The First Time.” Remember “Juke Box Hero?” And there was also a song called “Dirty White Boy.” All rockers, you’ll notice. They had a couple of really huge slower-paced tunes, too, called “Waiting For A Girl Like You” in 1981, and then “I Want To Know What Love Is” 3 years later.
A lot of rock music fans—at least some of the ones I know—hate Foreigner. And I think it’s because of those 2 power ballads. They were perfect for filling up those big arenas during the concerts of the 80’s, but, for some reason, people get all offended when rock bands decide to slow it down and play something the least bit sentimental or romantic. I think it’s the same thing that caused so many people (mostly male) to turn against Journey. It was all those sweet ballads that made guys decide they didn’t like ‘em, anymore. And they blamed most of that on Steve Perry. I think the same thing happened, to a lesser degree, with Foreigner. Just my opinion.
Anyway, here’s a song primarily written by Mick Jones, one of the founding members of the band, with Lou Gramm on vocals, plus backing vocals from the New Jersey Mass Choir. (I love watching the choir in this video, which got shown a lot on tv back when the music channels actually played music!) The song was #1 in the United States and in the United Kingdom. And it’s been used in tv shows and movies, too. Not only that, but “I Want To Know What Love Is” is on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of “The 500 Greatest Rock Songs.” So…hey! I’m not the only one who liked it. And I still do. Here’s FOREIGNER!