Which Foreigner Members Are Nominated for the Rock Hall?
The nomination also raised an interesting prospect: If Foreigner gets inducted and their regular touring lineup performs at the ceremony, then zero of the members onstage will actually enter the Hall's 2024 class.
Foreigner's Rock Hall nomination extends to classic-era members Dennis Elliott, Ed Gagliardi, Lou Gramm, Al Greenwood, Mick Jones, Ian McDonald and Rick Wills. Of those seven members, only Jones remains in the band's current lineup, and he has taken a largely behind-the-scenes role in recent years as his health has prohibited him from touring regularly.
Jones will surely try his best to perform at the Rock Hall if his band is inducted, but he would be doing so alongside a half-dozen ineligible members — some of whom have been in the band much longer than the actual nominees. Bassist Jeff Pilson has been with the group since 2004, while lead singer Kelly Hansen has fronted Foreigner since 2005.
Why Aren't Foreigner's Current Members Nominated for the Rock Hall?
Despite their roughly two-decade tenures in Foreigner, Pilson and Hansen are not included in the Rock Hall nomination because they weren't part of the band's critical or commercial heyday. Both members only performed on Foreigner's most recent album, 2009's Can't Slow Down.
Pilson previously stated that he didn't expect to get inducted into the Rock Hall as a member of Foreigner. "I think someday Foreigner will get inducted," he told Misplaced Straws in 2021. "I don't think I will, nor necessarily should I, but I think the band will, and I do think the original guys really do deserve their due."
Kelly Hansen Has Publicly Advocated for Foreigner's Rock Hall Induction
Hansen has repeatedly advocated for the Rock Hall to induct Foreigner, who were allegedly blackballed for years due to a "personal vendetta" between Jones and disgraced co-founder Jann Wenner, who was ousted from the board of directors last year. "As an entity, I find it unusual that a group of people can have an arbitrary standard from which they decide who is in this substantial sounding-titled Rock & Roll Hall of Fame," Hansen recently told the Houston Press.
"They cite as one of their criteria as 'influence.' Well, how many people have picked up a guitar and tried to learn 'Cold as Ice' or 'Hot Blooded'? Or sing 'I Want to Know What Love Is' in a karaoke bar?" he continued. "This band has sold 80 million-plus records. And that's real records, not streams or downloads! That is the definition of influence!"
Foreigner Albums Ranked
Gallery Credit: Jeff Giles