Lou Gramm Admits He Initially Refused Mick Jones Offer To Join Foreigner

Lou Gramm recently joined Rock History Music for an interview and remembered when he turned down Mick Jones when Jones offered him to join Foreigner.

Lou Gramm is mainly known for his tenure with Foreigner, but before joining the band, he was the frontman of a band named Black Sheep. After their success with the Chrysalis label and the release of the single ‘Stick Around,’ Black Sheep signed with Capitol Records and released two records titled ‘Black Sheep’ and ‘Encouraging Words’ in 1975.

Although they were enjoying remarkable success, their equipment truck had an accident on the way to a show where Black Sheep was the opening act for KISS. So, they weren’t able to support their albums with live performances. For these reasons, Black Sheep eventually disbanded.

A year before Black Sheep’s split, Lou Gramm met his future Foreigner bandmate, Mick Jones. Speaking to Rock History Music, Gramm remembered those days and said he was a big Spooky Fan, and he went to see them and met Jones backstage. The singer then gave Jones Black Sheep’s first album for him to listen to.

According to Gramm, Mick Jones remembered him when assembling a new band, initially named Trigger but later became Foreigner. So he called and asked Lou if he would like to join. The singer refused the offer but later told his Black Sheep bandmates about this incident. When they told him he should accept this offer, Gramm traveled to New York and became a member of Foreigner.

During the conversation, Lou Gramm said the following:

“I was a big Spooky Tooth fan — they were great. So, we got backstage to meet them, and I gave Mick the two Black Sheep albums and said, ‘you can give those listen at your leisure.’ So, apparently, he did because when he began forming this yet-unnamed band, he remembered hearing my voice on those records and ended up calling my parents and asking them if they could get in touch with me and if I could call him back. So, I did, and he said, ‘Would you like to come to New York to audition for this new band I’m putting together?’

He then continued:

“While it sounded very intriguing, I said, ‘You know what, Mick? I appreciate the offer, but I’m in a band. I’m in a very good band — we just had a run of bad luck.’ And I told him what happened, but he said, ‘Oh, that’s really bad.’ He went, ‘Listen, I know you’re going to see if you could put things back together; I’ll call you back in about three weeks, and we’ll talk again.’

So, in the meantime, I told the guys from Black Sheep who called and wanted me to audition, and they said, ‘What? Are you crazy? Go to New York, see what you’re going to do.’ So, when Mick called back, I said, ‘Yeah, I’m ready to come and audition.'”

You can watch the full interview below.