Lou Gramm (born Louis Andrew Grammatico; May 2, 1950) is an American rock singer-songwriter, best known for being the original lead singer of the rock band Foreigner.
Foreigner is a British–American rock band, originally formed in New York City & London in 1976 by veteran English musician and ex–Spooky Tooth member Mick Jones, and fellow Briton and ex–King Crimson member Ian McDonald along with American vocalist Lou Gramm.
Jones came up with the band’s name as he, McDonald and Dennis Elliott were British, while Gramm, Al Greenwood and Ed Gagliardi were American. Their biggest hit single, “I Want to Know What Love Is”, topped the United Kingdom and United States charts among others. Another one of their hit singles, “Waiting for a Girl Like You”, peaked at number two on the US chart for a record-setting 10 weeks. They are one of the world’s best-selling bands of all time with worldwide sales of more than 80 million records, including 37.5 million records in the US.
Current band members are Kelly Hansen (lead vocals and percussion); Mick Jones (lead and rhythm guitar, keyboard, backing and lead vocals); Thom Gimbel (rhythm guitar, keyboard, backing vocals, saxophone, and flute); Jeff Pilson (bass and backing vocals); Michael Bluestein (keyboard and backing vocals); Bruce Watson (lead and rhythm guitar, backing vocals); and Chris Frazier (drums and percussion).
In the late 1980s, Jones and Gramm each put out solo efforts on Atlantic. Gramm released Ready or Not in January 1987 and shortly after its release, rehearsals for Foreigner’s next album had started but ground to a halt as Gramm’s status with the group was uncertain. But after the promotion and concert dates for Gramm’s album were finished, cooler heads prevailed and Lou rejoined Foreigner in the studio for Inside Information, which was out at the end of 1987. Jones had Mick Jones in August 1989, then Gramm followed with his second solo release, Long Hard Look (October 1989), and decided to leave the group in May 1990 while preparing to tour behind Long Hard Look as the opener for Steve Miller Band. After finishing this tour, Gramm went on to form the short-lived band Shadow King, which put out one eponymous album on Atlantic in October 1991.