Dave Grohl has done a lot of things in his career: drummer for Nirvana, lead everything for Foo Fighters, multi-instrumentalist, prolific songwriter, tireless collaborator, all-around nice guy (probably). Now, we can add documentary film producer and director to the list.
The new documentary Sound City is Grohl’s homage to the iconic LA recording studio of the same name. Musicians and record producers flocked to Sound City Recording Studios during its 42-year history (1969-2011) for the distinctive sound produced by its Neve 8028 analog mixing console, of which Grohl is now proud owner.
Among the most famous albums recorded at Sound City are Nirvana’s Nevermind, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumors, Tom Petty’s Damn the Torpedoes, Rage Against the Machine’s Rage Against the Machine, Johnny Cash’s Unchained, Weezer’s Pinkerton, and Metallica’s Death Magnetic.
As director and producer, Grohl’s name and fame are intertwined with the movie; however, the interviewees who lend their own names and fame, along with amusing anecdotes from their Sound City Studios experiences, are the film’s brightest stars. Rick Springfield, John Fogerty, Frank Black, Barry Manilow, Stevie Nicks, Rick Rubin, Trent Reznor, Butch Vig, and Lars Ulrich are just a few of the people who appear in the film.
To help promote the film, Grohl assembled a house band of sorts—the Sound City Players—featuring his Foo Fighters bandmates, some Queens of the Stone Age friends and a number of other musicians who took part in the movie. Grohl and friends recently blitzed New York City with a three-hour rock & roll extravaganza at the Hammerstein Ballroom, after the Sound City producer/director stopped by Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report earlier that day.
Grohl’s enthusiasm is infectious. The 44-year-old hasn’t just survived all the highs and lows that the rock star life can hurl at a person, he has revelled in them. On stage, he’s still that teenage kid with all the head-banging energy and heart-pounding passion he brought to Nirvana.
Sound City debuted at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival on Jan. 18. It was subsequently released to video-on-demand and movie theaters on Feb. 1.
Sound City: Real to Reel, the documentary’s official soundtrack, is scheduled for a March 12 release; however, you can check out the tracks “From Can to Can’t” and “Cut Me Some Slack” on Sound City‘s official YouTube channel. Here’s the full track listing:
- Heaven and All – Robert Levon Been, Dave Grohl, and Peter Hayes
- Time Slowing Down – Tim Commerford, Chris Goss, Grohl, and Brad Wilk
- You Can’t Fix This – Grohl, Taylor Hawkins, Rami Jaffee, and Stevie Nicks
- The Man That Never Was – Grohl, Hawkins, Nate Mendel, Pat Smear, and Rick Springfield
- Your Wife Is Calling – Grohl, Hawkins, Alain Johannes, Smear, and Lee Ving
- From Can to Can’t – Grohl, Rick Nielsen, Scott Reeder, and Corey Taylor
- Centipede – Goss, Grohl, Johannes, and Joshua Homme
- A Trick with No Sleeve – Grohl, Homme, and Johannes
- Cut Me Some Slack – Grohl, Paul McCartney, Novoselic, and Smear
- If I Were Me – Jessy Greene, Grohl, Jaffee, and Jim Keltner
- Mantra – Grohl, Homme, and Trent Reznor