"I Don't Want To Live Without You" - Foreigner
from the album Inside Information (1987)
Billboard Hot 100 peak: #5 (one week)
Weeks in the Top-40: 11
Today's song of the day comes from the part-British, part-American rock band Foreigner, who by the mid-80's had softened their sound a tad and were able to stay up on the pop charts, with their sixth studio album Inside Information getting a good start with the top-ten pop and month-long #1 rock hit "Say You Will". The second single from the album was the mid-tempo love ballad "I Don't Want To Live Without You", written by band guitarist/producer Mick Jones. With background vocals that remind me of 10cc on "I'm Not In Love", and barely a guitar in sight, this record ended their transformation from rock bad boys to soccer-mom stars. And the video took "Say You Will" a bit farther, with not a trace of any of the band members in it, but rather interspersed nature videos and movie clips, like a YouTube proto-collage...
"I Don't Want To Live Without You" was (so-far) Foreigner's last top-40 pop hit, reaching the top 5 in May of 1988. The single was their first to go all the way to the top of the Adult Contemporary (or "easy listening" radio chart, while it peaked at #18 on Billboard's Mainstream Rock list. Internationally, the song went to #18 in Canada and #21 in Australia, but missed the top-75 in the UK altogether.
The following year, lead singer Lou Gramm left Foreigner after releasing his second solo album and having a second top-10 hit on his own with "Just Between You And Me". Mick Jones and the rest of the band carried on, hiring on Johnny Edwards as Gramm's replacement. A new album, Unusual Heat, arrived in 1991, and while rock radio took to the harder-edged single "Lowdown and Dirty", sending it to #4 on that genre chart, mainstream radio took a pass. Putting together material for another hits compilation, Gramm and Jones reunited, with Lou re-joining the band to record two new tracks for the set, with "Soul Doctor" putting them back in the top-5 on the rock chart in 1993. A new full-length studio album followed a year later, with the single "Until The End Of Time" reaching the top-ten on the Adult Contemporary chart at #8 and just missing the Hot 100 top-40 at #42. Another song from the record, "Under The Gun", popped on to the rock chart at #28. However after medical troubles ended up hindering Gramm on tour and the pair had another falling out, he left the band again, leaving Jones to completely redo the lineup as the sole remaining original member (and only member to be there before 2004). Nominally as "Foreigner", the act continues to play the "rock oldies" circuit, and have profited from re-recording the band's classics, with 2009 album Can't Slow Down reaching #29 on the albums chart in the U.S., no doubt helped by a bonus disc of redone hits.
Up tomorrow: An albino feline says "Stay".