Inside Dave Grohl's Surprising Connections to Canadian Indie Music

From repping small venues to giving love to Dan Mangan, Peaches and Baptists, the Foo Fighters frontman has a wealth of Canadian connections

Photo: Christina Leigh

BY Alex HudsonPublished Feb 2, 2021

Even as Dave Grohl has become one of the most famous rock musicians in the world, he's maintained his ties to the underground, popping up in surprise cameos and shouting out up-and-coming bands. Along the way, the Foo Fighters frontman has expressed his admiration for some Canadian indie artists — and he's even honoured a couple of our country's most beloved local venues.

Here are a few of Grohl's most notable (and surprising) connections to the Canadian indie music world.

Ever wondered who Grohl listens to for inspiration? He called Vancouver timekeeper Nick Yacyshyn, who plays in hardcore punk combo Baptists and metal supergroup SUMAC, among others, "my favourite new drummer, by a mile."

Fucked Up
Foo Fighters tapped Toronto hardcore crushers Fucked Up to open for them at a couple of Canadian shows in 2011. They were evidently impressed, since they later added Fucked Up to the bill for that year's Australian tour.

El Mocambo
On November 6, 2020, Grohl performed his American civic duty by voting in the presidential election — but as he did so, he paid tribute to a Toronto concert venue by wearing a T-shirt from the El Mocambo.

Foufounes Électriques
Way back in 1995, Foo Fighters played a show at Montreal club Foufounes Électriques. A quarter-century later, Grohl evidently hadn't forgotten, since he donned a shirt from the venue during a 2019 festival performance in Budapest, Hungary.

Dan Mangan
Vancouver songwriter Dan Mangan's 2014 single "Vessel" features a subtle cameo from Grohl on backing vocals and slide guitar. The musicians met when Mangan scored Peter Chelsom's film Hector and the Search for Happiness.

Ottawa busker Christina Leigh
When the Foos swung through Ottawa for a performance at 2018's RBC Bluesfest, a local busker threw up a Hail Mary by tweeting that Grohl should come watch her play in the ByWard Market. To her great surprise, he showed up for a photo op.

To celebrate Hanukkah 2020, Grohl and producer Greg Kurstin teamed up for a series of cover songs called The Hanukkah Sessions, including one of Peaches' classic tune "Fuck the Pain Away." If you ever wanted to hear Grohl sing about "sucking on my titties," here's your chance.

Latest Coverage