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JUKE BOX HERO

Foreigner to perform at Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino

Mark your calendars for Saturday, March 3, 2018 to join iconic rock band Foreigner as they take the stage at 7pm at Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino in Salamanca, NY.

This marks the band’s 40th anniversary which has garnered some of the best and most well known songs in the music business. I had the pleasure of talking with band member and saxophone player Tom Gimbel recently who joined Foreigner in 1992.

Gimbel and I talked about how new generations of fans are being seen at their concerts and how that keeps the band, and their music, to continually reinvigorate themselves.

This band has some pretty impressive stats behind their name including having two all time favorite rock ballads … the global number one hit “I Want To Know What Love Is” and the record breaking “Waiting For A Girl Like You”. Add in songs like “Juke Box Hero”, “Hot Blooded”, “Urgent”, “Cold As Ice” and “Head Games” and you can understand why this band has had staying power on Classic Rock and Adult Contemporary radio stations for decades and are still heard today.

Keeping up with the band has gone to new heights as they have racked up over 400 million YouTube views and counting, as well as 75 million albums sold.

Members of the band have changed through the years, but their unmistakable sound, heavy in brass laden songs and some of the best saxophone solos, like in the song “Urgent”, this band is not slowing down or losing their fan appeal any time soon.

Marking their 40th anniversary milestone, founder and Songwriter Hall of Famer Mick Jones is joining the band on the road … making this a “must see” musical event of 2018.

For ticket information visit www.senecacasinos.com and click on Seneca Allegany. For more information on the band visit www.foreigneronline.com

 

A CONVERSATION WITH TOM GIMBEL

HULICK: You are heading back to Seneca Allegany Casino for a show on March 3 …

GIMBEL: Yes! It’s kind of like spring then … well almost.

HULICK: Well, not really. Haven’t you heard we have two seasons here … winter and construction, which is one week in July.

GIMBEL: (laughs) That’s funny! Sure … western New York at Seneca … I remember now. We’ve played there a bunch of times and I went there skiing when I was a kid once. I grew up in New Jersey, so we are cousins you could say.

HULICK: You can’t go anywhere it seems these days without hearing Foreigner on a soundtrack, a TV show finale … and on and on … you guys are everywhere. Aren’t you sick of yourselves yet? (laughs)

GIMBEL: (laughs) No. We love it! It’s fantastic! We have several new generations that are discovering this music. When I was a kid it was a tradition to go into the attic and look through your parent’s records and now kids are doing it and they are finding old rock records like Foreigner, Bad Company and more. This music keeps reinvigorating itself and we are delighted that people still have an appreciation for it, because we sure do. I think the songs have held up really well over time.

HULICK: I read that downloads of your music went up 400%! That’s crazy!

GIMBEL: Isn’t that amazing?

HULICK: You did a full orchestral show of your songs recently in Switzerland for your 40th anniversary and that included a choir as well, didn’t it?

GIMBEL: Yes. We did a whole album with a concert symphony orchestra and a giant, massive choir … there must have been 80 people in that choir! That will be released sometime in the spring or summer I think. There will be a DVD of it.

HULICK: A few weeks ago my husband and I were listening to your Greatest Hits CD and when the song “Urgent” came on, I said we need to turn it up because the best sax solo is in this song.

GIMBEL: YEAH!!

HULICK: This was before this interview was even scheduled and when I found out I was going to talk to you, the sax player, I was thrilled!

GIMBEL: (laughs) How cool! I’m glad you like that. It’s funny … when I am playing that one people actually know it so well they are doing the air sax along with me. Even actor/comedian Jack Black does it on YouTube. So you are in good company.

HULICK: How many shows do you typically do a year?

GIMBEL: About 100 to 120 every year. It keeps us busy and out of trouble, and this is what we signed up for … this is what we’ve worked towards and we wouldn’t have it any other way … we wouldn’t want it any other way. We are so grateful people want to come out and jam with us and rock with us. We’re the kind of band you don’t come to see and just sit there and watch. We like to get everyone involved. We want the singing and dancing and the hooting and hollering going on, and that’s what our singer, Kelly Hansen, wants. He won’t settle for anything less.

HULICK: What else can we expect from your show?

GIMBEL: Expect to hear all the Foreigner songs you hope to see us play, we’re gonna play them all … we’re not going to leave anything out. It’s high energy like I just mentioned our singer just jumps around and gets people into it and we will do a couple acoustic songs and we have a high school choir come up at the end. That’s really cool because it gives us a chance to raise awareness of funding being cut from music school programs.

HULICK: What’s your favorite song to play live?

GIMBEL: “Take Me To The River” by Al Greene. Oh! You mean a Foreigner song. (laughs) It has to be “Urgent”. I get out there with my saxophone and just lose myself. I don’t know where I am. It’s like clocking out … after the song’s over I’m like what happened. I need the smelling salts. (laughs)

HULICK: Can I make a special request? Since that is my favorite Foreigner song can you do it in the beginning of your show and then a second time as the encore?

GIMBEL: (laughs) If I had my way we’d do it in the middle too! (laughs)

HULICK: I’ll go for that.

GIMBEL: (laughs) Would you consider management? You can be my manager and get that done as part of our contract. (laughs)