FOREIGNER's JEFF PILSON Says He Will Continue Performing While Seated Until Summer Tour With STYX

March 16, 2024

Ever since legendary rockers FOREIGNER kicked off their farewell tour last July in Alpharetta, Georgia, their bassist Jeff Pilson has been performing while seated on a stool as the result of a back injury. Asked in a new interview with Jeff Gaudiosi of how his back is doing now, Pilson said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Well, nice of you to ask. I had my surgery November 27th. So in a few days, it'll be my three-month anniversary. I've been this entire time working on the recovery since then — a lot of physical therapy — but I'm doing fabulous."

He continued: "My doctors have told me they want me to stay seated for a while. I return to the stage March 1st. I'm not sure how long I'll be able to keep myself seated, but I am trying to think health first here. So I'm gonna be seated for a while, but I'm able to walk. I walk — I take walks every day. I'm trying to build it up.

"The doctor said, 'Listen, you can't go from zero to 60," Pilson explained. "'You've been working on this stationary and you're not doing what you do for months now.' He said, 'You've gotta build it back.' And there's the worry that when you get the adrenaline and you get out there, you do something, but you're actually gonna hurt yourself. So I have to be very careful. I'm gonna be seated for a while. But my goal is by the summer tour with STYX and John Waite, I wanna be up and rocking. And I think I will. I feel like I will."

Last August, Pilson told On The Road To Rock about the experience of performing while seated: "Well, it is a challenge. What's probably the most difficult… I mean, yes, I'm in pain. It's generally not too bad a pain when I'm on stage, because I'm seated, but when I'm standing and walking, I'm in pain still. So that's a problem. But the challenge, really, has been psychological because I wanna rock so bad [laughs], and I have to sit there in a chair — which, thank God we've got a, an amazing band and I can just sit there and groove with Chris [Frazier], our drummer, and it's wonderful. But the performer in me is just dying because I wanna get out there and rock. And we've got this beautiful set going. We've got this great production and everything. I wanna be part of it so bad and I can't, so that's frustrating. But I also get this bird's eye view of the show and I see what's going on and I kind of don't miss me. [Laughs] So that's great. Lots of stuff going on. The show has been great. The audience has been fantastic. We do the acoustic portion of the show, which really excites me. So, as challenging as it's been because of the back — and it looks like I'm probably gonna be stuck like this until I get surgery — that's unfortunate, but at least I've got this great band to play with and these great shows to do, and when I'm up there, I'm having the time of my life. So that's what really counts."

Last month, FOREIGNER founder Mick Jones revealed that his ongoing absences from the band's farewell tour, which began in 2022, have been due to his battle with Parkinson's disease. The 79-year-old musician added that he is "still very much involved in the background with FOREIGNER" and remains "a presence."

Just a week earlier, FOREIGNER was nominated for the 2024 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. The inductees will be announced in late April, with the ceremony returning to Cleveland this fall and again streaming live on Disney+.

To be eligible for a nomination, the artist or band must have released its first commercial recording at least 25 years before the year of nomination.

FOREIGNER's current incarnation includes Jones on guitar, Michael Bluestein on keyboards, Bruce Watson on guitar, Luis Maldonado on guitar, Kelly Hansen on vocals, Pilson on bass and Frazier on drums.

Jones, the sole remaining original member of FOREIGNER, hasn't played a full show with the band for at least a couple of years.

FOREIGNER's "Renegades & Juke Box Heroes" tour with STYX will visit venues across North America starting June 11, 2024 in Michigan

After singer Lou Gramm left FOREIGNER in 2003, Jones took some time off before regrouping a couple years later with an entirely new lineup, featuring Hansen and Pilson, among others.

Gramm was the voice on FOREIGNER's biggest hits, including "Feels Like The First Time" and "Cold As Ice" from the band's eponymous debut in 1977, and later songs like "Hot Blooded" and "I Want To Know What Love Is".

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