Dave Grohl was born in Warren, Ohio and grew up in Springfield, Virginia.
Grohl was raised a Roman Catholic.1 It’s unclear how devout his family was, but his parents divorced when he was a child,2 so they certainly weren’t orthodox Catholics. Plus, even as a teenager, Grohl was more concerned with getting high than attending to his studies or taking church seriously. He said:
Well, I went to a catholic school for two years and that’s a pretty scary memory. Why did I go? Reform, I was a naughty boy – just didn’t care about anything, really. One enduring memory of that school is getting really stoned and the sitting down and having to go through the whole morning prayer thing. I was so high it kinda sent me into a panic attack.3
No, organized religion probably isn’t too important to Grohl, who found his spirituality in his music. He even compares it to a religion, saying:
Music, at some point in my life, became like my religion. I looked at it as something that was more than just a vinyl disk or more than a poster on a wall. It was something that opened me up and made me believe in other things.4
He does care enough about ridiculous religious zealots to protest them in their most absurd moments of religious zealotry. He sang a tongue-in-cheek song to members of the Westboro Baptist Church once (the Christian group that protests soldiers funerals and blames gay people for all of the problems in the world), essentially implying that it’s no big deal if men have sex with men and women have sex with women.5
Rockin’ the vote
Grohl has had his hand in politics, but it’s hard to tell when it’s a joke or if Grohl is really serious about his political aspirations.
It all started in 2004 when Grohl helped campaign for Democrat John Kerry. He took some flack from his fans for stepping offstage to make a statement, but addressed their concerns6 and explained that he hated George W. Bush and was so offended that Bush used his songs “Times Like These” and “My Hero” during the 2004 campaign that he decided to throw his support behind Kerry. He said:
It was not a good feeling. I talked to my lawyer and we tried to send him a cease and desist order, something that said, ‘You’re not allowed to use my fucking music,’ but there were loopholes. I thought the best way to show what I thought was to join the John Kerry campaign.7
By 2008, Grohl had caught the political bug and decided to run for president. Here’s where it started to seem like a joke. Of course, he didn’t get the nomination from any party, but he did get a few interviews and some chances to take a stand on some issues, plus a few more cracks in at George W. Bush. But largely, he just made jokes and offered absurd metaphors, such as:
[When I got hot in the summertime, I] turned on the hose and I drank from it. I want America to come back to that place where we’re all drinking from the hose. I think that’s a perfect metaphor for what’s gone wrong in this country. Water is now more expensive than gasoline. How is that possible? It’s because in this country, corporate domination dictates our daily lives. We need to get back to drinking from that hose.8
Weird hose-drinking metaphor aside, that quote contains a pretty good jab at corporate America, indicating that Grohl pays attention–and probably truly cares. What more can you ask for?
- Dave Grohl. NNDB. [↩]
- Interview: Kieth Cameron meets Foo Fighters Dave Grohl. The Guardian. [↩]
- Dave Grohl; FHM Quote, unquote. Foo Archive. [↩]
- Talk: Dave Grohl. Wikiquote. [↩]
- Foo Fighters protest Westboro Baptist Church. CNN. [↩]
- Dave Grohl comments on politics. Prince. [↩]
- Dave Grohl – Grohl Felt Sickened By Bush’s Foo Fighters Abuse. Contact Music. [↩]
- Harp – Dave Grohl Rocks The Vote – March ’08. Foo Archive. [↩]