Foreigner to play at Thunder Valley Casino
For parents who want something different to do on a Friday -- July 6 is just the night.
Parents who want to see Foreigner don’t have to find a babysitter for their younger children.
And parents of adults visiting for the Fourth of July weekend now have an event they both can enjoy.
Attending a Foreigner concert (the rock group performs at Thunder Valley Casino July 6) is a three-generation event.
And that’s just the way the band wants it.
“Our audiences are comprised of three generations. It’s incredible,” said Foreigner saxophonist Tom Gimbel by phone Saturday. “We’ve seen little kids, 4- to 5-year-olds, and they know the words of the songs.”
Of course, the little concertgoers aren’t pronouncing the words exactly as Foreigner does but they are nevertheless singing and dancing.
“For ‘Juke Box Hero,’ a lot of kids think it’s ‘Juice Box Hero.’ Or for ‘Dirty White Boy,’ they think it’s ‘Dirty White Bear,’” Gimbel said. “We even got one (bear) on our merchandise on our website.”
British guitarist Mick Jones formed the band in 1976 and band members today are in their 50s and 60s.
The group appeals to both the baby boomers and their children.
Guitar Hero and Rock Band also feature classic rock games where youth discover Foreigner’s music, according to Gimbel.
And three of Foreigner’s songs are featured in the new movie musical, “Rock of Ages that celebrates music of the 1980s.
Plus the band spends more time touring than staying at home.
“We’ll take time off for holidays,” Gimbel said, “but the rest of the year, we’re on the road for 120 shows a year all over the world. We spend a lot of time in Europe. Germany is like our second home – they know us well.”
Does Foreigner still sound like it did since the 1970s?
“Yes, absolutely. People can check out our performances on YouTube,” Gimbel said. “We love when people tell us it’s as good as it was in the old days. What a compliment!”
With 10 multi-platinum albums, the band isn’t relying just on the old hits, such as “Cold As Ice,” “Hot Blooded,” “Urgent,” “Waiting For A Girl Like You” and “I Want To Know What Love is,” even though those are rock classics.
Their latest album, “Can’t Slow Down,” was written with NASCAR in mind, according to Gimbel, and is being well-received at concerts.
“The title song is a rocking little number,” Gimbel said. “When we do it live, people respond and that’s a real gift instead of people folding their arms and saying play some old songs.”
And unlike some super groups, who don’t pay attention to the cities they’re performing in for one night, Foreigner is excited to be playing soon in Lincoln.
“I’ve looked the place up since we’ll be playing there,” Gimbel said. “It’s going to be a Friday night at Thunder Valley Casino, which has a beautiful outdoor amphitheater. Friday night is a perfect night for a rock concert. Plus there is golfing nearby.”
Gimbel is a golf instructor.
They’re probably be back in the near future.
“We’re going to keep doing it until we’re in our 70s and 80s,” Gimbel said. “As long as the people keep enjoying it, we’ll keep doing it.”
Know and Go
What: Foreigner in concert
When: 8 p.m. July 6
Where: Thunder Valley Casino amphitheater, 1200 Athens Ave., Lincoln
Admission: $24.50, $29.50, $43.50, $57.50 and $67.50 (plus taxes and fees)
Information: thundervalleyresort.com/entertainment or at the Thunder Valley Casino ticket sales office between 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.