Dave Grohl has shared intimate details about his career in a revealing interview with CBS.
The Foo Fighters frontman talked about the pressure of success and poured his heart out over his reaction to the death of fellow band-mate Kurt Cobain.
The Foo Fighters are probably the strongest torchbearers for rock n roll in the mainstream today. While rock as a genre has been falling off from top 40 charts for decades now, the Seattle-based act has fought for the airwaves with teeth and nails as a last hurrah for guitar-driven popular music.
Since their inception in 1994, the band has won the Grammy for Best Rock Album four times and this year they took home the accolade for Best Rock Song for their track “Run”.
“Ages ago, when I was a kid, my Dad said, ‘You know, this isn’t gonna last, right? Savour every check like it’s the last one you’re ever gonna make.’” recalled the 49-year-old rocker about the early days of his career.
“And every time we make a Foo Fighters record, I think, ‘Well, if this were the last one, then we had a good run,’ it would have been great.”
Grohl, who dropped out of high school at 17 to try his luck in the Washington punk scene, joined Nirvana in 1990 after the sudden breakup of his previous band. Nirvana had been looking for a steady drummer since their first album ‘Bleach’ and Grohl fit them to a tee.
In Michael Azerrad’s lauded 1993 biography of the band titled Come as You Are: The Story of Nirvana, Grohl is cited retelling that first encounter,
“I remember being in the same room with them and thinking, ‘What? That’s Nirvana? Are you kidding?’” and “Because on their record cover they looked like psycho lumberjacks… I was like, ‘What, that little dude and that big motherfucker? You’re kidding me’. I laughed. I was like, ‘No way’”.
The rest we all know is history. With Grohl Nirvana became one of the most influential bands in history, practically defining the sound of grunge in the 90s. At the height of their success, Cobain took his own life in 1994.
“When most people think about Nirvana, they think about a video or a song on the radio, but to me, it was a really personal experience with some friends that went from sleeping on floors to then being the number one band on the charts,” said Dave Grohl to CBS,
“Still, to this day, whenever I see a new artist that’s young that blows up and becomes gigantic overnight, I kind of get worried for them,” he added, “I don’t think anybody’s cut out for it.”
The now frontman of Foo Fighters recalls his mindset after Cobain’s suicide.
“Just lost,” he said. “I went through a really dark period where I couldn’t really even listen to the radio because it broke my heart just to hear music.”
After a couple of years out of the spotlight, Grohl started recording songs again, in the genesis of what would turn out to be his current multi-platinum selling project,
“I went to the cassette place down the street, (and) said, ‘Could you make 100 of these,’ and made a little card to go in it. And I just started giving it out to people. And I called it ‘Foo Fighters’ ’cause I wanted people to think it was a group.”
Last June, the Foo Fighters managed to score their 25th top 10 single on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Songs airplay chart with “The Line”
In a shocking admission to many fans, Dave Grohl also stated he hasn’t taken drugs in over 20 years, “When I tell people I’ve never done cocaine in my life, they think I’m lying!” he said, “But I love music, and I love life. And to me, survival is the game – that’s the hardest part. I just wanna play music.”