So the Foo Fighters have cancelled the rest of their European tour, including Saturday’s Wembley gig which I have tickets for. I kind of have mixed feelings. Obviously I’m gutted not to be seeing them – it was going to be a great day out, hopefully in the sun, with friends. The support acts of Iggy Pop and Royal Blood were bands I was really looking forward to seeing (having never seen either before). I’ve never been to a gig at Wembley, and the only time I’ve ever seen the Foos I was up in the gods at the O2 arena – literally 2 rows from the very very back, so I was looking forward to getting more up close and personal. BUT Dave Grohl is a performer, a rockstar, and delivering a set from the confines of a wheelchair just isn’t him. He wouldn’t be enjoying it, the crowd wouldn’t enjoy it as much (despite what people are saying) and the band wouldn’t have that same interaction. Plus, Dave’s future health and wellbeing has to be priority. No point struggling on and doing himself more damage.
I think that cancelling all of the UK dates is the right thing to do. He couldn’t pick and choose one or two.
Being as I currently still feel rough post-Download (whether I actually have a touch of illness or the worst hangover ever isn’t clear, although lack of appetite suggests the former, as I’m usually ALWAYS hungry!) it’s not the end of the world for me (remind me of that on Saturday!). The thought of a lie in at the weekend is all that’s keeping me going, and it also means I get to spend Father’s Day on Sunday with my Dad. Financially I could do without the spends, as Download was very expensive. At least I’m not out of pocket. The hotel we had booked has a 24 hour cancellation fee, and a friend of ours was driving, so no train tickets booked. I might have had a very different opinion if it was going to cost me money!
I’m sure the dates will be rearranged, rather than completely cancelled, and I can only hope that the support acts can still support, and it’s still a Saturday and I can still make it. We’ll see what happens. Perhaps I was optimistic thinking I could do two weekends in a row. I’ll be even more excited by the time they do reschedule!
Meanwhile I have a sneaking suspicion that Foos will headline Download next year (and I may have already booked a hotel, because I had so much fun this year!)
Yet again proving himself to be the nicest man in rock, here was Dave’s message to the fans (accessed by clicking on the “broken heart” on a picture of Operation).
Your old pal, Dave here. Been a while, eh? It’s been one hell of a year, that’s for sure. Looks like we’ve got some serious catching up to do! Hmmm, let’s see…..where do I begin?
The funniest thing happened to me the other day in Sweden!
Two songs into our set at Ullevi Stadium in Gothenburg, I made a mad dash to the right of the stage during MONKEY WRENCH to shred some tasty licks for the kids up front. It was a beautiful night, beautiful stadium, 52,000 screaming people….dream gig! Well….wait for it….I definitely shredded something (ZING!) Wound up feet first over the Edge (pun intended), dropping about 12 feet, dislocating my ankle and snapping my fibula like an old pair of take out chopsticks. Whoopsie daisy. Not good. Without realizing the extent of my injuries, I stood up to get back onstage and crumbled like a sack of Joe Theismanns (look it up, kiddies). That shit was B-R-O-K-E.
As I lay there on my back, I just thought, “Are you kidding me? We haven’t even gotten to the screamy bit of the song and the gig is fucking OVER?” So, I asked for a microphone and told the audience I’d get fixed up and come right back to finish the show ASAP. Shock? Probably. But, I couldn’t stand the thought of such a perfect night going to waste! I looked at our drummer Taylor and said, “Bust out some Chevy Metal covers while they fix me up!” So, as the band kicked in to “Stay With Me” by The Faces, the medics poured me onto a stretcher, took me off to the side, cut my favorite pants off (so bummed) and popped my ankle back into place. I asked if I could get back onstage to finish the show, but they said I needed a cast (which was 20 minutes away at the hospital) to hold my ankle in place. So I looked my EMT, Johan in the eyes and said “Well, then you’re coming up there with me right now and holding it in place until they can bring the cast here. Ready?” He stared at me wide-eyed for a second and said, “OK, lets’ go…”
I don’t know who was more scared, me or Johan. 5 minutes later, I don’t know who was having more fun, me or Johan. (I actually looked at him in between songs and said “This is pretty fun, isn’t it?” He smiled and nodded yes.)
Like clockwork, the cast arrived, I walked offstage for a song or two as they put it on me, and then came back to finish the gig. Let’s just say that singing our song “Walk” with a straight face was pretty goddamned hard. “These Days” was a good one, too. (Easy for you to say! Your leg has never been broken!) All in all, it was without a doubt the single most bizarre Foo Fighters show in the entire 20 years of being a band. Hands down. What seemed like a tragedy at first turned into a triumph, and we all walked away with a new sense of appreciation for what we’ve got…
Straight to the hospital for x-rays, where we finally saw the extent of the damage. That’s when things got really real. I was told I needed surgery to fix the break. I decided to fly back to London and find a doctor that could see me ASAP. (Thanks for the recommendation, Paul!) An MRI and a few x-rays later, we set a date and prepared for the operation.
Operation went well. Had a great team and nice stay in hospital. Good curry, too! Thank you to everyone involved.
So….here I am, recovering with 6 metal screws in my leg, thinking about a lifetime of holding up TSA lines from here to Kalamazoo….damn.
Here’s the not so witty bit…….My doctors have advised me to lay low for a while. The most important thing now is for me to recover from the surgery, to keep my leg elevated so as to keep swelling down and prevent any infection/complication that could do long term damage. I’m not out of the woods yet, folks…
Which means, and it kills me to say it…..the doctors have told us to cancel shows. I’m really so sorry, guys. You know I hate to do it, but I’m afraid it’s just not physically possible for me at the moment. We’re doing our best right now to work out a plan, so bear with us. You know we’re good for our word. But for now, I need to make sure we have YEARS of gigs ahead of us….
You have always stood by our band, and we will always stand by you. Like I say at every show, we wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for you guys. And I mean that. I thank you from the bottom of my heart. And I will do everything I can to come back and give you a night to remember for the rest of your lives AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.
Until then…my sincerest apologies.
Your friend, Dave”
You can’t be mad about that. Well, you can, but a) it would be pointless, and b) he’s hardly done it on purpose!
Let’s have some cool pics of Dave and the band to finish off with.
I say “GET WELL DAVE!”