Iconic rock band Foreigner set to include Penticton in their farewell bow

Foreigner's fond farewell

After five decades of chart-topping hits and touring the world, one of the most iconic classic rock bands of all time has chosen Penticton as one of their stops for their Historic Farewell Tour.

Foreigner will rock the South Okanagan Events Centre for a sold-out show on Saturday, May 4. The band will be joined by the Headpins.

Foreigner’s playlist for the night will be jammed with hit after hit like ‘Hot Blooded,’ ‘Feels Like the First Time,’ and ‘Cold as Ice.’ You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone of any age that can’t sing along to the chorus of one of their many top hits like ‘Juke Box Hero’ or ‘Urgent’ and ballads like ‘I Want To Know What Love Is.’

Castanet got to talk to Foreigner bassist Jeff Pilson before the band takes the stage in Peach City.

Pilson, who has played with Dokken and Dio, has been with Foreigner since 2004. Foreigner just finished a residency in Vegas and has been touring the States with their Farewell tour before they make their way through Canada. They will play 73 concerts during this tour.

Castanet: Foreigner is such a legendary band, with endless hits that have become the soundtrack to so many decades of youth. How does it feel doing your farewell tour?

Pilson: We are having a blast. We are putting out a high energy show because that’s what concerts should be. We are having fun and the crowd is having fun. This is a farewell to our touring days but we will still do select concerts in 2025.

Castanet: When you get on stage each night, does it still ‘Feels like the first time?’ I had to ask!

Pilson: (Laughs) It’s still a thrill every time. I still get goosebumps on the back of my neck. I’ve loved every minute of it. I get to play songs of this calibre to appreciative audiences. But it will be nice to get off the road and be with family.

Castanet: Is there a difference between Canadian and American audiences at your concerts?

Pilson: Canadians listen a bit more. Canadians are like the nice, polite version of Europeans. We have our die-hard fans in Canada too. I’m very excited to playing in Penticton and all of Canada.

Castanet: Foreigner is nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: Class of 2024. It’s shocking Foreigner isn’t already in the Hall of Fame.

Pilson: The fan votes have been incredible and fingers crossed we make it. We are up against some incredible bands like Dave Matthews and Oasis. The original guys of Foreigner deserve to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Castanet: With a heavy touring schedule, how do you keep up the energy for each show?

Pilson: We are having fun and the audience is having fun too. People are walking away from our show having had a really good time, getting to sing along to songs they know by heart or didn’t even realize they knew. For the younger generations, because there isn’t anything like this kind of rock coming out, they become our newest fans.

Foreigner has been rocking the charts for over 40 years going from best selling records, cassettes, to CDs and now to streams approaching 15 million per week. Their songs appear on numerous hit TV and Netflix series (Stranger Things) and countless movies (Pitch Perfect) as well as sung on The Voice and other singing shows.

“Many years ago, I wrote a song called ‘Feels Like The First Time’ and now we are performing one last worldwide tour. We will be presenting a show that I know will have the same enthusiasm as our very first appearances,” said the founder of Foreigner Mick Jones.

Lead singer Kelly Hansen said the time has come after living their lives on the road more or less for 18 years.

“We have always strived to give you our best and we intend to finish this the same way. Foreigner has a brilliant and increasingly demanding catalogue of songs to sing and I refuse to give them less than they deserve. So, we’re going to finish strong. I want to make it very clear how grateful and appreciative we are to our audiences all over the world who have supported this band.”

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