Where do I even begin? I’ve seen the Foos twice already, once in a large venue, once in a smaller one, but this was so up close and personal, it was like having Dave Grohl and his buds come over to your house and jam at your dinner party or something. As this article from the VH1 website so aptly put it, “For the first time, Grohl's surprisingly tender voice and intrepid lyrics are front and center for an entire two hours. Or, as he put it, ‘I'm not just screaming my balls off.’” That pretty much sums up what was so great about the show. Don’t get me wrong -- I love me some screaming Dave. But his talented songwriting and distinctive voice totally stole the show, and it was a beautiful thing.
Rhonda hooked a cracka UP and our seats were in the second row, to the right of the stage. I could practically count Dave’s nostril hairs, we were so close. The show started refreshingly on time with one of their new songs that began with just Dave playing guitar in his chair, and reached a feverish crescendo as the rest of his band came out, along with a keyboardist, a violinist, and an extra guitarist. Taylor’s drum bass was so intense, I could feel it pounding in my throat as Dave banged his head, a look of pure ecstasy on his face. I got the chills and knew this was going to be a kick-ass show. Acoustic or no, they just rock.
Some of the songs had accordion mixed in, one had a dude (I think it was one of their roadies) playing harmonica. Dave told stories between songs and just generally interacted with the very appreciative audience a lot. And guess what, valley peeps? He talked about the valley a BUNCH. He lives in Encino (tra la la!) and loves it. I knew this already from one of their performances last year on one of the MTV award shows where a camera followed Dave backstage, and he pointed at his shirt that he was wearing:
with the word “Encino” in block letters on the front and declared “That’s right, because I’m strictly valley, motherf***ers!” as he flashed the double-bird at the camera. I thought that was hilarious and I turned to Derek and said “I need me one of those shirts.” It took some searching around, and I wasn’t able to find one as cool as his, but one day on a trip to Rite-Aid of all places, to my surprise, there were Encino t-shirts being sold that had very similar lettering, so I snatched that puppy up! It’s frog green, but what are you gonna do?
But I digress. So he was telling the crowd how much he loves the valley, that his house is "huge and cheap" and proclaimed Silverlake as “total bullshit, dude.” It was hilarious. I felt more bonded with him than ever.
The show ended with two encores and more stories about his younger days with Nirvana, and much to my amazement and delight, the very last song was my favorite Foo Fighters song: Everlong. I did what I always do when I hear that song: I cried. And as he sang the last notes of the chorus, I swear he was looking right into my eyes. It was possibly the most emotionally satisfying concert I have ever seen.
After the show, since we were VIPs and all, we got to stay for the after-show soiree, which featured huge buffets of food, open bar, and burlesque dancers. We went ahead and partook in a bit of the bubbly, but had to call it a night after that -- we were both just wiped. I got home and did the super-fast-makeup-swipe-off-clothes-shedding-fall-into-bed dance and drifted off to sleep with a huge smile on my face.
Rhonda, I love you, girl. What an awesome birthday present.