A Six-pack of Foo Fighters

Wherein I lay out six tunes by an artist. Not saying necessarily that they are the best but six I dig at this point in time …

I doubt if much history has to be recounted about Dave Grohl so I’ll keep it brief. I did a series on Nirvana, wow, was it three years ago? As I recounted in one of the posts, “Dave Grohl didnโ€™t join the band until 1990, almost three years after its inception.” But he was the guy who was there when it mattered.

Grohl had been writing songs all the time during Nirvana but couldn’t get much in the way of placement on their albums with Cobain being the primary songwriter. As he said, “I was in awe of Kurt Cobain’s songs, and [I was] intimidated. I thought it was best that I kept my songs to myself.” That said, he did get a songwriter credit for “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” which must make his accountant happy.

After Kurt Cobain’s death, he had offers to join Nirvana and Wikipedia says heย almost accepted a permanent position as drummer inย Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. (Can’t picture him there.) He was – as you might imagine – somewhat depressed and not even sure if he’d play drums again.

But he managed to get himself into a studio and record an album of his songs. It sounds to me like it was a “get it out of your system” album on which he played virtually all the instruments. (Guitarist Greg Dulli plays on one track.) To prevent anyone knowing it was him, he shopped it around under the name Foo Fighters,

Grohl had been reading a lot about UFOs and the name was taken from the description World War II aircraft pilots would use to describe various Unidentified Flying Objects. “Had I actually considered this to be a career,” Grohl said, “I probably would have called it something else because it’s the stupidest fucking band name in the world.”

After the album was a hit, Grohl quickly assembled a band and the Foo Fighters have now been around ever since 1994.

I don’t do these posts chronologically. Truthfully I probably couldn’t. This is around the time when I really stopped following bands. I’m not even a big fan of the Foos as much of their stuff is just too generic for me. But these tunes I like quite a bit.

First up, “All My Life.” This is a kick-ass tune from the Foo’s fourth album in 2002, One by One. I’ve been listening to this song for many a year figuring it was just about a guy’s experiences.

And so today’s blog surprise is the discovery that “Grohl has said that the song is about how he enjoys performing oral sex on women.. I’m very fond of giving oral sex to women. It’s a pleasure-giving experience – giving someone something that they’ll remember for the rest of their lives, and if you do it right, they will.”

Okay, Well, Harumph! There you go.

Spotify link

From one of my Nirvana posts: “Dave Grohl had grown up in Virginia and was a devotee of the Washington, D.C punk scene. He first played guitar, learning songs by bands like Bad Brains and Circle Jerks. He later switched to drums and played in the D.C. band, Scream. He cited John Bonham as a major influence and had Bonhamโ€™s three-rings (Led Zep IV) symbol tattooed on his wrist.” (That’s some dedication right there.)

My Hero” is a song from the Foos’ second album, The Colour and the Shape. (The spelling is a tribute to their Brit producer Gil Norton.) Per Grohl, the song is dedicated to ordinary, everyday heroes, as he himself never had musical or sports heroes growing up as a child. He’s coy about whether or not it’s also a reference to Cobain.

Spotify link

My son = Sonny Boy – is a bigtime Foo fan. He saw them on the infamous Broken Leg tour sometime after Grohl fell from a concert stage in Sweden. The show must go on, eh?

From Echoes, Silence, Patience, and Grace, one of my very favorite Foo songs, “The Pretender”

Spotify linkย 

“Everlong” is one of the Foos’ most popular songs. Grohl: “That song’s about a girl that I’d fallen in love with and it was basically about being connected to someone so much, that not only do you love them physically and spiritually, but when you sing along with them you harmonize perfectly.”

Former talk show host David Letterman says it’s his favorite song and helped him get through heart surgery recovery. The band actually interrupted a tour to go on his show to play it for him. They also played it on his final show.

Spotify link

Two more tunes for you – the first one is “Best of You,”

I’ve got another confession to make
I’m your fool
Everyone’s got their chains to break
Holdin’ you
Were you born to resist or be abused?
Is someone getting the best, the best, the best, the best of you?

Spotify link

Last but hardly least, another one of my favorites. I have this one and “All My Life” on my workout playlist. Now all I have to do is actually work out sometime. “DOA” has some of my favorite lyrics in rock music:

It’s a shame we have to die, my dear
No one’s getting out of here, alive
This time

Take a good hard look for the very last time
The very last one in a very long line

Spotify link

The Foos and Rage Against the Machine and the Red Hot Chili Peppers are all scheduled to headline Boston Calling in May. That could be a hell of a thing. We’ll see if it happens.

35 thoughts on “A Six-pack of Foo Fighters

    1. Yeah, like I mentioned, I’m not a huge fan. But that’s more because their songwriting isn’t always up to the level of these tunes. But these I really, really dig.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. While I kinda like Dave Grohl who seems to be a no BS, straight shooter guy, I never got into the Foo Fighters. Itโ€™s not their songs Iโ€™ve heard including the tunes you featured here are bad.

    I guess their music just doesnโ€™t grab me that much. It would likely be more of an acquired taste. Admittedly, they wouldnโ€™t be the first band where that happened.

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    1. Frankly it took me a while to come up with six I liked from their catalog. I could probably fill one whole album with the stuff of theirs I really like. The generic stuff is dismiss able but I think this stuff is pretty good. “DOA,” and “All My Life” have been on my favorites (of any band) for a while and I only recently realized what a great song “Pretender” was. I’d give hose another listen. They’re really excellent hard rock.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Tony gave me a couple albums to get me going a while ago. Still haven’t pulled the trigger for a sustained time. Ill just have to give them the Spotify treatment. For not being a big fan you are pretty good on the uptake. Doc Rock.

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    1. Yeah, they fit into a category I might call “Good band, not a big fan, like some of their songs.” I was saying to someone – maybe Christian – that if all their songs were this good I’d be a way bigger fan. Sonny Boy loves these guys so it raises their profile for me. I’d strongly suggest that if you’re gonna listen to any of their stuff, listen to these six. They have some other good ones but I think these were some of their biggest hits and it’s some of their best. If you don’t like them, chances are the rest won’t grab you much. Their songs don’t often have enough good melodies and so they scream and pound the drums to make up for it.
      Hope all is well up there in the Yukon territory. We are in uncharted waters.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. He has a good batting average. I tuned into his live show last week. Enjoyed it. Some cool surprises. I’m going to do it again tonight.
          Yeah, the Spotify thing has kind of taken over how i listen to music. But The Grand is a good option. Mixes things up. I’m going to give him some time. He played a Jim Capaldi (I’d never heard) the other day and set me off on that vibe.
          I’ll give the FFs some love this weekend.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks – needed this after a pretty shocking start to the day here. Great selection – I think I name checked these in my least to most on the Foos.
    Grohl did play with the Heartbreakers – there’s footage of him behind the kit on the sole gig he did with em on SNL somewhere. I think he’s also responsible for the main riff on Nirvana’s Serve the Servants.
    Their new album is ‘done’ and ready to go apparently – looking forward to that

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    1. Oh, yeah. Was it you that brought that to our attention? Sorry, great drummer but such a cultural mismatch. I can’t see Grohl being happy playing drums behind somebody else’s tunes. Having already done that.
      Do you think Foos still have the edge or is their best work behind them?

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      1. Yeah I think they can still surprise – Concrete and Gold was the best they’d done in some time, they just need the right produce really and to ditch the ‘concept ‘ approach to recording

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I think Mother Nature is going to help out and get Spring into action. Clear the air and get some good old warm sunshine into the equation. I really do feel for the folks that are struggling with this thing. Just trying to do our part up here not to add to the shit storm.

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        2. No worries. America can always come through to fuck things enough for the US, Canada and Mexico combined. We are a country absolutely filled with fucking nitwits.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m really happy you included the Pretender, one of my all-time fave FF songs. Everlong is terrific too. Another one I love is Walking after you. Saw them live just once in Melbourne too many years ago and they sure as fuck were loud.

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    1. Pretender is a great song. I’ll check out ‘Walking After You.’ I think I may know it. Loud is good but wear earplugs. There is a band my sources tell me you may be familiar with – AC/DC – and my inner juvenile wants to see them someday in whatever incarnation. I will prepare accordingly.

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      1. The album version of Walking after you is far superior to the single version which is a remix done later. Love Aka Daka, though they’re all transplanted Brits in reality.

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        1. Listened to it. Didn’t know it. Nice song. “I’m on your back.” I get what he’s trying to say but it’s an odd way of expressing it.

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