Dave Grohl Concedes His Drum Battle With 10-Year-Old Nandi Bushell - Rolling Stone
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Dave Grohl Concedes His Drum Battle With 10-Year-Old Nandi Bushell

Plus, Foo Fighters perform “Shame Shame” from their upcoming album Medicine at Midnight

It was supposed to be a big year for Dave Grohl and the rest of Foo Fighters. The band had charted out an international celebration tour for their 25th anniversary, printing T-shirts, stuffing the trucks with equipment, and even sponsoring a limited-edition Coors Lite tallboy.

But then, as Grohl told Stephen Colbert on a Thursday night Late Show interview, “Everything just stopped.”

Grohl still has all those T-shirts — and all those beer cans. (He was freely indulging from one during his interview with Colbert.) But the 25th-anniversary tour is a bust, for now. Thankfully, as Colbert pointed out, Grohl has been a part of one of the more heartwarming music stories to come out of the Covid-19 era: a battle with a 10-year-old drummer named Nandi Bushell.

“She’s beating the crap out of her drum set, and when she does drum rolls, she screams,” Grohl said, recalling the first time he watched a video of Bushell performing Nirvana’s “In Bloom” on the drums. “I was like, oh my God, this kid is a force of nature.”

A couple months later, Bushell challenged Grohl to a drum battle, which he eagerly participated in for multiple rounds online. He even wrote a theme song for Bushell to commemorate her talent. (Bushell, in turn, created a theme song for Grohl.) But as for who won the battle itself, Grohl has finally announced his concession.

“There was nothing I could do!” Grohl said. “I was literally being called out by the school bully — ‘I’ll see you on the playground after school!’ Every time she would put out these videos on her page, I’d be like, oh my God, I’m gonna get my ass kicked again.”

Grohl was also on the show to promote the band’s forthcoming album, Medicine at Midnight, which would’ve been the new LP that they would have performed on their 25th-anniversary tour. The album is now scheduled to come out February 5th, 2021, and in a pre-taped segment, Grohl and the rest of the band performed its lead single, “Shame Shame.”

“We started recording about a year ago in October 2019,” he told Colbert in their interview. “And instead of booking a studio like every other band, we thought, ‘OK, let’s book a house.'”

That turned out to be not the greatest idea, as the old house where they recorded the album was  haunted. “Things were kind of being tinkered with when we weren’t around. … We would come back in the morning, and instruments would be de-tuned, you’d hear things on the Pro Tools, levels on our mixing board were changed. We set up a baby cam to see if we could see any paranormal activity. It freaked us out! The album is nine songs, because we just recorded nine and got the hell out of there.”

 

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