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Kelly Hansen

Foreigner And The Life Of A Rock Star


In this episode

Welcome to the second part of In Search of Excellence featuring Kelly Hansen, the lead singer of the legendary rock band Foreigner which has had five platinum records and sold more than 80 million albums. He was also the lead singer of the heavy metal band Hurricane, popular in the 80s.

03:46 The importance of being proactive

- Kelly was frustrated with where he was
- Realized he had to be proactive
- You have to handle criticism
- Believe in yourself enough that you can take the risk
- Keep moving forward
- Is fear our greatest motivator to success?

11:47 Sex, drugs & rock ’n’ roll

- Learned a huge lesson in Hurricane
   - They became famous rock stars
   - 6 months after the label went under, no one knew who they were
- What popularity projects to you is not reality
   - You have to know who you are as a person
- Experienced some things of a rock star life
   - Never did drugs

16:05 Playing in front of 50 000 people

- There are a lot of types of audiences
   - You have to treat each kind differently
- Responsible for converting the audience
- How to keep your energy night after night?
- Show hours have to be the apex of the day

23:02 Priorities in life

- Re-prioritized his life
- Currently on the farewell tour
- Has other passions besides music
- Wants to spend time with his family

26:05 Popular songs vs. “bathroom” songs

- The band had 16 Top 30s
- Every single song did well
- Fortunate to be in a band with so many popular songs

28:28 The importance of Extreme Preparation for success

- Your 100% might be somebody else's 70%
- When you over-prepare, it's like muscle memory
- Bands in the 70s and 80s looked rebellious and unhappy
- 45 years later, not trying to prove how dark and cool they are
   - Smiling is a huge part of that

34:15 The current state of the music business and where's it going?

- Talked with a famous rapper about his revenue stream
- Live is the only place you're making any money
- Everybody's stealing and no one’s paying
- A cynical view of what's going forward
- AI created content
- Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

40:44 Giving back to others

- Started working with Grammy Foundation
   - To raise awareness about the lack of funding for school music programs
- Did a lot of work for the Shriners Hospital
   - Helping parents pay bills for their sick children

42:18 Fill in the blank for excellence

- When I started my career, I wish I had known
   - More about collaboration
- The biggest lesson I've learned in my life is
   - You are insignificant
- And more

Sandee | Bliss: Beaches

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