Foo Fighters dropped by The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on Thursday night (Nov. 19) to perform their latest single “Shame Shame” and promote their upcoming album Medicine at Midnight.
Ahead of the performance, host Stephen Colbert sat down with frontman Dave Grohl to discuss how the coronavirus pandemic affected the band’s plans to celebrate their 25th anniversary with their now-cancelled Van Tour 2020.
“We’d been planning for this year, uh, years ago,” the rocker revealed. “No, we sorta thought, ‘Well OK, it’s our 25th anniversary. We’re gonna make our tenth record. We have this world domination scheme to circle the planet a few times and, you know, celebrate with the world.’ And we had finished making a record, and we had T-shirts printed and pressed and ready to go, and the trucks were filled with equipment, and everything just stopped. And so we kinda had to shelve everything.”
During the chat, Grohl also revealed the band’s special 25th anniversary edition Coors Light can, which he joked he had “pallets of” sitting idle in his studio, before changing topics to discuss how his much-loved drum battle with 10-year-old Nandi Bushell came to be.
“About a year ago, Nirvana’s producer Butch Vig sent me a link to her Instagram, where she was playing a Nirvana song — she was playing our song ‘In Bloom,’” he said. “And I mean, she’s 10 years old. She’s this big, she’s tiny, and she’s just beating the crap out of her drum set. And when she does drumrolls, she screams. So not only is she playing all the parts perfectly, but when she does a drumroll, she’s like, ‘Ahhhh!’
“So he sends this to me, I’m like, ‘Oh my god, this kid is a force of nature,” Grohl continued. “And then about two months ago, someone sends me another link and says, ‘Hey this kid’s challenging you to a drum battle.’ And I thought, ‘Oh isn’t that cute?’… So I thought, ‘OK, I’ll play something simple and send it to her.’ One day later, she comes back with her response, and she just wipes the floor with me. She’s kicking my ass! This kid is like kicking my butt at the drums.”
After going back and forth with the U.K. wunderkind for a few rounds, the former Nirvana drummer recognized he’d been outmatched. “Sometimes you just have to concede defeat,” he admitted with a grin, adding, “There’s nothin’ I could do. It was like being called out by the school bully, like, ‘I’ll see you on the playground after school!’ So every time she would send me one of these videos…I just thought, like, ‘Oh my god, I’m gonna get my ass kicked again.’ It just happened over and over and over again.”
Watch Grohl’s full interview with Colbert, as well as the Foo Fighters’ performance of “Shame Shame,” below.