June 1981: Foreigner Release URGENT
After establishing themselves as a rock band to be reckoned with give the success of third album, Head Games, Foreigner was ready to kick things up a notch. Mick Jones and company called in one of rock's heaviest of heavyweights, producer Robert "Mutt" Lange, to turbocharge the group's already combustible sound.
The album they crafted was the chart-topping blockbuster, 4. The first single from the effort, "Urgent," was released on June 22, 1981. The song arrived about a week before the full-length hit record stores, and it was an immediate hit. The track was particularly popular on rock radio, with FM stations across the country throwing "Urgent" straight into heavy rotation.
Helping power the song was a blistering sax solo from Motown legend, Junior Walker, who went go on to tour with Foreigner for years. Singer Lou Gramm told Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols the great story of how they found Walker performing in New York City, and personally asked him to play on the track. Gramm also shared the tale of Walker joining the band to perform the tune in Los Angeles. Watch it below.
"Urgent" rocketed up the charts, peaking at #4 on the Hot 100 for the week of September 4, 1981. The song stayed at the #4 position for the entire month.