Ahead of their show at London’s O2 Arena on Tuesday night, Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl and Pat Smear sat down for a chat with our very own Wyatt.
In the wide-ranging 12-minute interview, Dave and Pat spoke about how they came up with the ‘Concrete and Gold’ album title, getting Dave’s “good friend” Paul McCartney on board to play drums on ‘Sunday Rain’, whether chart success is important to them, and the possibility of making a UK/international version of ‘Sonic Highways’.
Elsewhere, reflecting upon their “open-door policy” at Hollywood’s EastWest Studios - where they drafted in pop singers Justin Timberlake and Shawn Stockman of Boyz II Men to guest on ‘Concrete & Gold’ - Dave explained that, ultimately, their inspiration for mingling with musicians from non-rock genres comes from an unlikely source; Pantera.
“So basically, the way the Foo Fighters work, we get along with everybody,” Dave told Wyatt. “For years we’ve been that band when we get backstage at a festival the first thing I do is pick up a bottle of whiskey and I just walk around banging on dressing room doors to see who is fun, see who is cool. It could be Tricky, it could be Muse or it could be whatever – I just look for pals.”
Dave continued: “Actually, that’s something I learnt from Pantera. Back in the day we did a show with Pantera and we became friends and I would go see them on tour all the time.
“I realised that you’d be backstage at a Pantera show and there would be like Marilyn Manson in that corner, Kato Kaelin is in that corner and Britney Spears is in (that corner)… everybody loved to hang with Pantera. So, to me that was the coolest thing about them; they were the sweetest people and they had this open-door policy.
“But also with our band we don’t really plan too much when it comes to making music. So when you’re at a studio, every week there was someone else in there – Glenn Hughes from Deep Purple was down the hall with Jason Bonham, Joe Bonamassa and then Lady Gaga is over there and then Wolf Alice is over here and Rufus Wainwright is over there.
“The three months we were there we were meeting these people and you just make friends and it’s literally that easy.”
Pushed by Wyatt about whether they would test their open-door policy with an artist like Justin Bieber, Pat responded: “I would invite him in, come on!”
Concurring, Dave said: “I think yes. I mean… come one, come all, y’know. We’re not building any walls here around Foo Fighters okay? It’s an open-door policy.”
The only condition, Dave added, was there would need to be “extreme musical vetting.”
Watch Dave and Pat’s full chat with Planet Rock below.
Boasting the songs ‘Run’, ‘The Sky Is a Neighbourhood’ and ‘The Line’, ‘Concrete and Gold’ is out now and currently surging to number one on the UK album chart.