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The Greatest Frontman of My Generation

I saw the Foo Fighters at the Ford Amphitheater in Coney Island Monday night... No opening act because the show was added to their tour last minute.

Giphy Images.

Best show I have seen in some time, and EXPONENTIALLY better than the last time I saw Grohl play… Which was with Nirvana in, I believe, 1990.

Paul Bergen. Getty Images.

(This was taken in 1991.)

I've written about this before, so I have plenty to cut & paste… Back then, I was a DJ in college (WVFI- Voice of the Fighting Irish), and we had access to local shows all over the bordering states of Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan.  So a drive to The Blind Pig in Ann Arbor was an easy trip to see a band that was just starting to get heavy rotation on college radio… Again, this was 1990, so somewhere in between their first album "Bleach"(1989) and their mainstream-hit album "Nevermind" (1991).

"Easy drive" probably wasn't an accurate description of my commute to that show because it takes over 2 hours to get from God's country to that shit-hole known as Ann Arbor, but we did it anyway.

I thought their live performance that night at The Blind Pig was AWFUL.  You can watch the whole show on youtube and decide for yourself, or take my word for it… I really don't give a fuck.

But, in their (Nirvana's) defense, it was in a small venue that didn't have the acoustics nor the production value of the live performance MILLIONS of others saw and fell in love with almost 5 years later when MTV had the band perform 14 songs on their UNPLUGGED set… A set that went on to record live shows with Elton John, The Allman Brothers, Sting, REM, LL Cool J, Eric Clapton, Pearl Jam, Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, Duran Duran, Stone Temple Pilots, Page and Plant, The Eagles, Bob Dylan, KISS, Alice In Chains, Oasis, Paul McCartney, George Michael, Jay Z, and, yes, even Ricky Martin… But it is now a storage space for Rob Dyrdek's old skateboards and other bits of random "ridiculousness".

Fast forward 30 years, and I am in a much larger venue, but certainly not a stadium… I think the amphitheater holds 5,000 spectators… And Dave and the rest of the band absolutely CRUSHED it from start to finish.

Full disclosure: I had taken nearly 50 milligrams of Delta8 before the show, but I was still certainly soberer (or perhaps 'more sober'?) than I was in 1990.

I won't get into the particulars of the set because I don't want to.

I won't post a video of the band playing even though THOUSANDS of people spent most of the evening recording the concert while barely watching it live.

I took 2 pictures… One is the thumbnail, and the other was of the band's backup singer because she had a Courtney Love/junkie-chic look to her that made me feel nostalgic for the 90s.

Here's why I am writing the blog… 

Dave Grohl turned 52 earlier this year.  I turn 50 in a couple of months.  So we're essentially the same age, and he definitely belongs to my generation… Generation X, which is wedged in-between the Baby Boomers (ended in 1965) and Millenials (began in 1981).

It got me wondering: Is Dave Grohl the greatest frontman of our generation?

First off, a generation is defined as "the average period, generally considered to be about 20–⁠30 years, during which children are born and grow up, become adults, and begin to have children."

So, for this argument, I will say artists between the age of 37 and 63 years of age.

Who's better than Grohl in that age range?

I asked Twitter and got a fair amount of feedback for a Tuesday morning…

James Hetfield, Eddie Vedder, Anthony Keidis, Dave Matthews, Jim James, Michael Stipe, Perry Farrell, Brandon Flowers, Matthew Bellamy, Vince Neil, Axl Rose, Corey Taylor, Corey Glover, Rob Zombie, Trent Reznor, Phil Anselmo, Rob Thomas, Bruce Dickinson, Dave Mustaine, Liam Gallagher, Maynard James Keenan, Zack de la Rocha, Trey Anastasio, and Bono.

I don't include guys like Scott Weiland or Chris Cornell or Chester Bennington because longevity is a big part of why I would argue Grohl is better than the rest… And death is the number 1 enemy of longevity.

The only dead guy I would consider was Prince… He would've been 63 this year, and he had everything I ever wanted in a frontman EXCEPT the band.

And I understand that The Revolution was on multiple albums with The Purple One, but Prince was always more of a one-man show for me, and certainly not synonymous with the band he may have recorded with… Whereas Dave is intimately tied to both Nirvana and the Foo Fighters as well as Queens of the Stone Age, Probot, and a few other side-projects.

So how do you judge this?

Does Grohl have as good of a voice as Chris Cornell?… No.

Can he play guitar as well as Hetfield?… No.

But he does everything good enough to be entertaining assholes like me for over 3 decades, including a live show last night that blew me away.

Who's your top 3?

Here's mine…

  1. Dave Grohl
  2. Eddie Vedder
  3. James Hetfield

Is it not that big of an honor given any of the fellas I mentioned above don't have to compete with David Lee Roth, Robert Plant, Jagger, Daltrey, Hendrix, or Jim Morrison?

Is there a woman in my generation that comes close?… Even without the age restrictions, I think of neither Gwen Stefani, Brittany Howard, Courtney Love, Chrissie Hynde, Debbie Harry, Diana Ross, nor Stevie Nicks as a top 3.

Lemme know.

Take a report.


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