Foo Fighters – Fenway Park (Boston, MA), 7.18.15

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Sometimes it is easy to overlook the obvious; you get so caught up in other things and looking for the next new thing that you never get around to doing the one thing that is right in front of your face. This is the only explanation that I can offer as to why it took me twenty years to see the Foo Fighters live, especially since they are easily one of my favorite bands. It seems kind of ridiculous that I’ve seen some bands that I don’t even like multiple times (hello Creed) while a band that consistently puts out music that I love and that is fronted by one of the greatest guys in rock and roll has played for two decades without me catching one of their performances. But better late than never. 2015 was the year that I was finally going to see the Foo Fighters in action; I was even willing to go inside the belly of the beast (aka Fenway Park) to finally fulfill this dream.

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I made sure to wear some Yankee jewelry to the show. Take that Red Sox!

I made sure to wear some Yankee jewelry to the show. Take that Red Sox!

I was really excited for this show, but in typical me fashion I wouldn’t let myself get very excited for the show in case something went wrong along the way. Since I was going to the show with other people, traveling, and it was outside, there were a lot of variables that were out of my control. This is not an ideal combination for me, since there were a lot of possible avenues for landmines. The fact that Dave Grohl broke his leg right before the U.S. tour was set to begin only added additional drama, since they did wind up having to cancel a few tour dates in Europe. I wanted so badly to cross this off my bucket list that I was seriously convinced that it wasn’t going to happen; I refused to acknowledge that I was even going to the show on social media so as not to jinx it. With the possibility of rain in the forecast and then an accident that snarled traffic on the Mass Pike, I worried that my premonitions were coming true. My friends kept waiting for me to get excited, but I refused to believe it was going to happen until I saw Dave Grohl on that stage. Even when we were sitting in Fenway, watching the opening acts as the skies began to clear and the sun came out, I still would not let myself get visibly happy. Admittedly, this was partially because my friends found it funny that I seemed so nonchalant about finally seeing the Foo Fighters, but I was still waiting for the other shoe to drop and for there to be a problem. I also think I was sort of in denial that it was finally going to happen – Dave Grohl and I would be in the same place at the same time.

After twenty years of buildup, there was certainly the potential for disappointment once the Foo Fighters finally took the stage and I accepted that I was indeed going to see them play. But even after waiting nearly half my life for this particular moment, Dave Grohl and company more than lived up to expectations. It was two and a half hours on non-stop rock and roll that was both exhilarating and exhausting (in a good way). Once the show started, everyone was on their feet for the entire show and while the cozy seating at Fenway doesn’t allow a lot of room for rocking out, almost every single person in the stadium was dancing and moving to the music. Once the Foo Fighters put their foot on the gas pedal, the show didn’t let up until it ended.

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Of course, because of Grohl’s broken leg, some concessions had to be made. The result was something spectacular – for most of the show, Dave sat in a giant throne that he designed while high on painkillers. The throne moved about the stage so he wasn’t stationary in one place and my hopes that it would be easier to get some photos of Dave because he was seated proved to be misplaced as that man proceeded to rock out as much in the throne as he would have if he was on his feet. I really have no idea how he managed to pull that off, but the throne seemed to do nothing to slow him down. Really, the only thing that the throne did was make him look like the rock and roll royalty that he is. He even used the boot on his leg to play the guitar for one of the songs, which I am presuming doesn’t happen at a lot of other rock shows.

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The Foo Fighters spanned the entire breadth of their catalog, playing songs from all periods of their career. They played some “old school” Foo Fighters as well as some songs from their newest album Sonic Highway. The set was also occasionally sprinkled with some classic rock covers as well – songs that made the band want to be musicians to begin with. We were treated to some Queen and AC/DC, which is fine by me. I wish that they would have done even more covers, since that’s half the fun of seeing a band live – hearing them do something that you don’t hear them do something that they don’t normally do. But I wouldn’t have wanted them to not do any of the Foo Fighters songs that they did – I just wanted them to play even longer, which I will fully admit is just me being greedy. Not many bands play for two hours, let alone cross the two and a half hour threshold. But I could have been there until midnight and I would have still wanted more. I’m a little jealous that the crowd at the show on Sunday got a cover of the White Stripes “Seven Nation Army,” but since I got to hear Jack White perform that earlier this year, I’m really in no position to complain. The band did mix it up with a few acoustic numbers, which was the only time during the show that Dave descended from his throne and used crutches.

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There were plenty of moments for the crowd to sing along with the band and we were challenged even more by Dave’s assertion that the crowd at night two is always louder than the crowd night one. I don’t know if we were the exception to the rule, but I was worried that I might lose my voice toward the end of the concert. The band was also serenaded with a chant of “FOO!” which is apparently the first time that has happened on this tour and which Dave appreciated yet found a bit disconcerting since it does sound very similar to “BOO!”.

Grohl interacted with the audience throughout the night and is unsurprisingly a great storyteller. He recounted for us how he got his injury and though I’m guessing almost everyone in the audience knew the story, it was still fun to hear it directly from him. He also recounted how his high school band came in third in a talent show and wondered what happened to the guys in the band that one. It was funny and I was hoping that the fact that he mentioned that his band played “Footloose” meant that we were going to get at least of little of that song, which would have been amazing, but didn’t happen.

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The opening acts were Boston bands Mission to Burma and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. I wasn’t at all familiar with Mission to Burma and their more punk sounds wasn’t really my cup of tea. Apparently they have been around for a while, as Grohl cited them as a band that inspired him. I was more into the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, who I was vaguely familiar with from their brief moment of popularity in the 90s and one of their songs being featured in the movie Clueless. Their ska sound is a lot of fun and I’m glad to see that they are going strong. I was originally disappointed that we missed Dropkick Murphy – they opened on Sunday night – but the Bosstones were a suitable replacement.

Mission to Burma

Mission to Burma

Mighty Mighty Bosstones

Mighty Mighty Bosstones

The Foo Fighters show was so fun that we immediately started looking for other dates on their tour when we could see them again, which is saying a lot as my friend Robin has now seen them three times in the span of two weeks. I have no idea if we’ll be able to pull off the Chicago show, but the fact that we’re even contemplating it immediately after seeing them perform is the most ringing endorsement that I think I can give this concert. At minimum, it won’t be another twenty years before I see the Foo Fighters perform again; it’s rare that bands and performers live up to the hype, but the Foo Fighters and Dave Grohl specifically did that in spades. You walk away from a Foo Fighters show not only delighted by the music, but with the sense that you actually know Grohl. He’s everything that you’d want him to be – a lovable goofball that can melt you face off with some kick-ass rock and roll. It was a great night with great company and I can cross another item off the old pop culture bucket list.

Set list:

Everlong

Monkey Wrench

Learn to Fly

Something From Nothing

The Pretender

Big Me

Congregation

Walk

I’m the One (Van Halen cover – Snippet played during band introduction)

Another One Bites the Dust (Queen cover -Snippet played during band introduction)

One Vision (Queen cover – Snippet played during band introduction)

Cold Day in the Sun

My Hero (Acoustic)

Times Like These (Acoustic)

Under Pressure (Queen & David Bowie cover)

All My Life

These Days

Outside

Breakout

White Limo

Arlandria

I’ll Stick Around

This Is a Call

Let There Be Rock (AC/DC cover)

Best of You

The Foo Fighters tour will continue through November.

 

Pop Culture Odds and Ends – Everything Old is New Again Edition

Hollywood is all out of ideas; that is the only conclusion I can draw from this installment of pop culture odds and ends, as the links are littered with stories about reboots and spinoffs. Original thought just doesn’t seem to exist anymore. Chances are if you loved something in the last 20 years, you’ll get to experience it all over again with a new version for the next generation. I’m not necessary against the idea of recycling ideas, but it is happening way too frequently now. Is nothing sacred?

While I sound like a crabby old lady and tell some kids to get off my lawn, enjoy your biweekly roundup of pop culture stories that you might have missed.

  • Marvel has announced that they will develop four original series for Netflix that focus on Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage, followed by a The Defenders miniseries.
  • 21 new characters will appear on Game of Thrones this season. Here’s the list and the actors attached. *spoilers*
  • The NY Times has a story on Fallon taking over The Tonight Show in February. He says he has his first guest in mind; I’ll be happy to do it Jimmy!
  • A local sports anchor did his entire segment as Ron Burgundy for Halloween:

 

  • Wu-Tang Clan’s Enter the Wu-Tang is 20 years old. We’re getting old, pals. But Wu
  • Notre Dame alum Regis Philbin re-enacted the Janitor’s speech from Rudy:

 

  • Adam McKay wants to make a movie about Ron Burgundy’s dog and kid going on adventures. I would totally watch this.
  • Dave Grohl played with the Zac Brown Band at the CMAs.
  • A study found that PG-13 movies are actually more violent than R movies.
  • Kate Upton may be the female lead in the Entourage movie. I didn’t think it was possible for me to want to see this movie any less. I was wrong.
  • Oh man – I love these Comedy Central spots featuring Loki:

 

  • Ali G is coming to FXX as part of a deal with Sacha Baron Cohen.
  • Hear The National’s song from the Hunger Games: Catching Fire soundtrack:

 

  • Lorde covered Tears for Fears for the soundtrack as well:
  • The History Channel is remaking Roots. 10 years ago I would have thought this was maybe an OK idea, but now that the History Channel lineup features shows about aliens and Swamp People, they have lost all credibility.
  • Bruno Mars released a new Gorilla remix featuring R. Kelly and Pharrell:

 

  • If you looking for some clarification about the ending of Thor: The Dark World, Slash Film has got you covered. *SPOILERS*
  • Jimmy Fallon let Harrison Ford pierce his ear. For reals:

 

  • The Fifty Shades of Grey movie won’t be released until February 2015.
  • Miley covered Lana Del Rey’s “Summertime Sadness”

 

  • A new initiative tries to get people to read and recite the Gettysburg Address. Plenty of politicians have participated, but so have Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel, Conan O’Brien and Louis C.K.
  • I liked this sweet LEGO commercial:

 

  • The wrecking ball sculpture at GVSU will be reinstalled; it was removed after students rode it to parody the Miley Cyrus video.
  • Ylvis’ hit “The Fox” is going to be a children’s book. I’m guessing the same will not happen for their follow up song “Massachusetts.” Definitely not for kids (NSFW either):

 

  • HAHA….sorry Packers, but Dawson delivered a pretty good burn:

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  • Beyoncé fans have started a petition asking her not to attend Kim Kardashian and Kanye West’s wedding. For the record, I would totally attend a Kimye wedding.
  • What in the HELL did Lucky magazine do to Kerry Washington? Step away from the Photoshop.

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  • Rumors that a certain actress wouldn’t be appearing much in season 2 of Orange is the New Black may have been exaggerated.
  • Pitbull will host the American Music Awards.
  • Oscar the Grouch and Grumpy Cat hung out. The opposite of hilarity ensued.

 

  • The future for an Ender’s Game sequel is unclear.
  • Lauren Manzo from Real Housewives of New Jersey is engaged.

Trailers

  • A teaser trailer for Looking on HBO.

 

  • Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Trailer:

 

  • Colin Farrell and Russell Crowe in Winter’s Tale:

 

  • How I Met Your Mother is doing an all rhyming episode. Here’s a sneak peek:

 

  • The new Robocop trailer:

 

  • Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones:

 

  • A Case of You with Peter Dinklage, who frankly deserves better:

 

A teaser trailer for Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent:

 

As always, we end with the supercuts and mashups:

  •  Cats remake The Hunger Games:

 

  • I shouldn’t have found this M.C. Thor “Hammer Time” rap as funny as I did.

 

  • Jimmy Kimmel re-cut Thor: The Dark World to be a romantic comedy (Thor Actually):

 

  • Sherlock gets the Friends opening credits treatment:

 

  • And finally, David Hasselhoff “sings” the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song:

If that doesn’t make you smile, I don’t know what will.

Happy Wednesday!

Pop Culture Odds and Ends – Comic Con Edition

One of the things on my pop culture bucket list that I’m dying to do is to attend Comic Con in San Diego. If you are unfamiliar with Comic Con, it is basically pop culture mecca; while the convention originally was focused primarily on comic books, it has morphed into a giant celebration of all things pop culture. It is the venue where tons of exciting news about television shows and movies is revealed and where die-hard fans congregate for the chance to see their favorite actors and directors at panels. If you love pop culture, it is something that you have to check out. It’s ridiculously popular and the people often have to camp out to get into the more popular panels, but I feel like it is something that I have to experience at least once if I am going to call myself a pop culture enthusiast. Perhaps next year.

But thanks to the wonders of the Internet, you don’t have to go to Comic Con to get all of the breaking news and scoop about your favorites. This week’s round-up is chocked full of nuggets from convention as well as some other pop culture goodness that happened in the last two weeks. I just saved you all a roundtrip ticket to California.

So kick back and peruse my bi-weekly summary of all things pop.

  • The biggest news of the Con in my opinion – Superman and Batman are going to be in a movie together!
  • Game of Thrones paid tribute to dead characters with an In Memoriam video (contains spoilers- duh):

 

  • NBC has released a trailer for Dracula:

 

  • Watch the entire X-Men: Days of Future Past Panel:

 

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson is rebooting Carl Sagan’s Cosmos.

 

  • Also Breaking Bad related – Walter White’s journey:

 

  • A How I Met Your Mother video from Comic Con. Amen, kids. Amen!

 

  • You can watch the entire HIMYM panel here.
  • A trailer for JJ Abrams’ new show Believe:

 

  • Sons season 6 promo – everyone looks really mad:

 

  • A new NSFW red band trailer for Kick-Ass 2 debuted at Comic Con:

 

  • A trailer for the new season of The Walking Dead:

 

  • A sneak peek of the Veronica Mars movie:

 

  • Metallica released a trailer for their upcoming film:

 

  • Watch the entire Marvel panel:

 

  • A Hannibal gag reel:

 

  • Trailer for season 2 of Arrow:

 

  • I’m still shocked by the sudden death of Cory Monteith. I long abandoned Glee, but he was always my favorite. Addiction is no joke, my friends. To remember him, one of my favorite performances from the show:

 

  • CBS has posted episodes of Swingtown, Jericho and Wolf Lake online.
  •  An article in Rolling Stone states that It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia will end after its 10th season. Glenn Howerton took to Twitter to say that might not be the case:

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  • Watch Jon Hamm’s ESPY’s monologue:

 

  • As a political scientist who used to use “I’m Just a Bill” in her Into to American Government classes, I enjoyed Jimmy Kimmel’s Schoolhouse Rock parody:

 

  • Parks and Recreation has some great guest stars lined up for next season: Henry Winkler (in some inspired casting) and Kristin Bell.
  • Watch Jerry Seinfeld and Stephen Colbert (two of my faves) chat:

 

  • Britney Spears new music video for her song in Smurfs 2 features 2 cute co-stars – her sons:

 

  • Tumblr of the week: 99 Problems (illustrations of possible Jay Z problems)
  • Florence Welch is just like us – gets drunk and sings “Get Lucky”

 

  • A trailer for the 4th season of Boardwalk Empire:

 

  • Vampire Weekend covers “Blurred Lines”

 

  • Jason Momoa (Drago, GoT) has been cast in a new Sundance Channel show.
  • Dave Grohl joined Sha Na Na on stage during a Grease sing-a-long because Dave Grohl is awesome (and to the kids in the video – shut up! A legend is on drums):

 

  • A new trailer was released for Catching Fire:

 

  • Sacha Baron Cohen has quit the Freddie Mercury biopic. That’s too bad – that had promise.
  • Watch Jesse and the Rippers (John Stamos’ band from Full House) reunite on Fallon:

 

  • The Backstreet Boys have released a new acoustic single:

 

  • Beyoncé: gets hair caught in a fan during a concert, keeps singing.
  • R.I.P. Dennis Farina. As a tribute, here is a supercut of the actor saying the F word (NSFW, obviously):

 

Baby News!

  • Robin Thicke covers Icona Pop’s “I Love It”

 

  • Aaron Paul appeared on Beverly Hills, 90210:

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  • Pearl Jam debuted some new songs at their concert at Wrigley Field:

 

  • Hear your first taste of the Elvis Costello and The Roots collaboration:

 

  • Alanis Morissette’s song “Ironic” rewritten so it is actually ironic:

 

  • A thief stole a van full of band equipment for the band A Flock of Seagulls. The interesting part of this story is that A Flock of Seagulls is still a thing – I haven’t heard a peep out of them since the 1980s.

As always, we end with the mashups and supercuts

  • Blurring Pains

 

  • Bill Clinton sings “Blurred Lines” (a song that I am completely obsessed with):

 

  • “Ice Ice Baby” sung by the movies:

 

  • History gets a Game of Thrones makeover in this video of the building of the Capitol:

 

  • Some new mashups courtesy of Girl Talk. First up, A Michael Jackson/Daft Punk combination:

 

  • Kanye and Marilyn Manson (I really dig this one):

 

  • This is impressive – a reinterpretation of the Wizard of Oz done a cappella with pop songs:

 

  • A Game of Hodor:

 

  • A supercut of people watching movies in the movies:

 

  • It’s Always Sunny in Pacific Rim:

 

  • And finally……A Cher/Golden Girls mashup? Spectacular!