Smells Like White Privilege? Dave Grohl Says He's a 'Basic Drummer' and Pulled From The Gap Band, Cameo and Chic's Tony Thompson

The best part of this entire exchange is when Dave gave Tony his flowers and Tony said, 'I know.'

Dave Grohl sits with Pharrell Williams on Paramount+ series, From Cradle to Stage (2021).
Dave Grohl sits with Pharrell Williams on Paramount+ series, From Cradle to Stage (2021).
Screenshot: YouTube

Foo Fighters singer/guitarist and former Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl recently sat down with Pharrell Williams for Dave’s Paramount+ series From Cradle to Stage, and OMG the best exchange ever happened.

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One particular clip making the rounds on Twitter involved Dave reminiscing about wanting to be a part of the drum line in his school’s band.

“I can’t read music—I couldn’t then and I still can’t now,” Dave said, prompting Pharrell to prop up Dave’s skill, calling his own “decent” in comparison to “[Dave’s] level.”

“Dude, stop saying I’m a good drummer because I’m the most basic fucking drummer,” Dave retorted, humbly. “If you listen to Nevermind—the Nirvana record—I pulled so much stuff from The Gap Band, Cameo and Tony Thompson [of Chic].”

Did your mind just explode into a cacophony of disco sounds because Dave legit just dropped a bomb on us (pun completely intended)?!

As Pharrell’s face contorted into the shock-and-awe pretty much all of us are feeling at the revelation, Dave noted that “no one makes the connection.” Thus, this story is his way of paying homage—which is a requirement as far as I’m concerned, especially when you know how white privilege plays into success in the entertainment industry, even if talent is a contributing factor.

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Like an epic song, the interview crescendos into arguably the best moment of the clip:

“[Tony Thompson] came to my house for a barbecue with somebody,” Grohl recalled. “I was like, ‘Man, I just want to thank you because I owe so much, I’ve been ripping you off my whole life.’ And he goes, ‘I know.’”

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Black excellence right there, y’all. King shit.

Now that know this story, I’m going to sum this all up via Staff Writer (and NBA Champion/MVP of the Succinct Headline) Jay Connor, who pointed out, “I can’t unhear this now.” And neither can you.

DISCUSSION

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Gameface doesn`t play nice with others

Dave Grohl is from the DMV and pays homage and due respect to all Black artistry including GO-GO. I disagree with your header as he has always been about the music of our folks with humility and reverence. Always. Idk where the privilege was presented especially since he publicly and privately gave Tony Thompson his flowers and continued to acknowledge his drum skills had room for improvement.

Perhaps you could have just used this: Foo Fighters singer/guitarist and former Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl recently sat down with Pharrell Williams for Dave’s Paramount+ series From Cradle to Stage, and OMG the best exchange ever happened.

I love your work Ms. Stidhum but on this article, I disagree with your opening premise.