Nandi Bushell, who captivated a corner of the internet in 2020 by drum battling Dave Grohl on YouTube, hopped behind a kit with her idol and the rest of the Foo Fighters to perform “Everlong” at the Forum in Los Angeles Thursday, August 26th.
“This person inspired me last year so much,” Grohl told the crowd before bringing Bushell onstage. He also called her “the most badass drummer in the world,” and the audience erupted into chants — “Nandi! Nandi!” — before Bushell even sat behind her kit. Once Grohl started playing the surging riffs that lead “Everlong,” Bushell twirled her stick high above her head and began to tap out the racing beat on cymbals that sent the song barreling forward.
Her father filmed her performance and posted it on YouTube for Bushell’s 299,000 subscribers. “It Happened!!!” she wrote. “It was EPIC!!!”
Bushell’s drum covers had already earned notice from Tom Morello, Questlove, and Lenny Kravitz before she posted her rendition of “Everlong” on YouTube in August of 2020. “Dave Grohl, I challenge you to a drum-off,” she declared. Grohl was game, and soon he and Bushell started sending videos back and forth. Grohl also wrote a song for Bushell that dubbed her “number one super girl.”
“A rock legend has been inspired by me. That is amazing,” Bushell told Rolling Stone earlier this year. “I’m inspired by [Grohl], so the fact that he’s inspired by me … speechless.”