'Juke Box Heroes'

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

1970s and '80s pop hit-machine Foreigner will be the headliner for this year's annual Shellabration event scheduled for Friday, June 15th, at the historic Oleson Park Bandshell in Fort Dodge. Tickets go on sale April 14 for a special advance price of $28, at www.ticketweb.com or 866-468-3401.

Last year's concert with REO Speedwagon drew a crowd estimated at over 5,500.

Foreigner took it's name from the fact that members came together from the U.S. and England. Many of Foreigner's songs you'll know by heart: Urgent, Cold As Ice, Juke Box Hero, Feels Like The First Time, Hot Blooded, Blue Morning Blue Day and more.

The band's current line-up includes founder and lead guitarist Mick Jones, lead vocalist Kelly Hansen (of the '80s band Hurricane), bass guitarist Jeff Pilson (formerly of Dokken), multi-instrumentalist and 20-year Foreigner vet Tom Gimbel, keyboardist Michael Bluestein and drummer Mark Schulman. Foreigner has had 14 Top 20 hits and 10 multi-platinum albums since the band originally formed in New York City in 1976 by veteran English musician Jones with former King Krimson member Ian McDonald, and American vocalist Lou Gramm (Black Sheep). Dennis Elliott from the UK and Americans Ed Gagliardi and Al Greenwood would later join the band.

The band's self-titled debut album "Foreigner" released on March 8, 1977 on Atlantic Records produced solid radio hits like Feels Like The First Time, Cold As Ice and Long, Long Way From Home. The album "Double Vision" was Foreigner's second release in 1978, followed by "Head Games" in 1979 kept the band a staple of mainstream radio, but trouble was brewing. The band split with McDonald and Greenwood and began a long series of lineup changes. Gramm later suffered a brain tumor.

Foreigner's fourth album in 1981 was originally titled "Silent Partners" but later changed to "4" and was the band's only number 1 album in the United States. In '87 they were still cranking hits, like "Say You Will," but the most productive period was behind them. A comeback album in 1994 was now well received. Can't Slow Down was released in 2009, and tours with Styx, Journey and Night Ranger introduced the band to a new generation.