Lou Gramm Announces Retirement
Original FOREIGNER singer Lou Gramm has announced his retirement from performing as a solo artist.
Gramm broke the news of his decision to stop touring at the conclusion of his concert Saturday night (December 29) in Schenectady, New York.
He told the audience (see video below): “It’s been quite a few years with a lot of fun and a lot of hard work. Just talking with my wife and some people in the business… You get real excited when you start out in this business, but you’ve gotta be smart enough to know when to walk away from it too. And I just feel it’s that time for me.”
Gramm still reportedly has a few things planned for 2019, including several shows with John Payne (ASIA) under THE ROCK PACK banner, but he will apparently no longer tour with his solo band.
The 68-year-old Gramm left FOREIGNER for good in 2002 and has battled health issues in recent years, including the removal of a non-cancerous tumor. He told the Democrat & Chronicle last year that he was planning to retire, but still reunited with FOREIGNERfor several shows in 2018 to celebrate the band’s 40th anniversary.
“I’m tired of the business,” Gramm said in 2017. “It’s time to hang up the mic.”
Gramm was the voice on FOREIGNER‘s biggest hits, including “Feels Like The First Time” and “Cold as Ice” from the band’s eponymous debut in 1977, and later songs like “Hot Blooded” and “I Want to Know What Love Is”.
FOREIGNER replaced Gramm with Kelly Hansen in 2005. Guitarist Mick Jones, the only remaining original member, suffered from some health issues beginning in 2011, eventually resulting in heart surgery in 2012.