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Dave Grohl: David Bowie told me to f*** off

Dave Grohl and David Bowie
Dave Grohl and David Bowie (Image credit: Lester Cohen, Dave Hogan - Getty)

Dave Grohl (opens in new tab) has recalled the moment when rock’n’roll icon David Bowie (opens in new tab) told him to “fuck off.”

The Foo Fighters (opens in new tab) leader looked back on the moment in the latest entry in his Dave’s True Stories posts on Instagram (opens in new tab), with the barbed comment sent to him after an email exchange about a possible collaboration between the pair.

Grohl had initially approached The Thin White Duke with the proposition of him providing vocals on an instrumental track for a “big budget, major motion picture.”

Bowie politely turned Grohl down, but insisted the pair could work on something different at some point down the line.

Grohl continues the story: “I immediately responded with a brief note saying, ‘Hey man, thank you for listening to the song. I hope that you’re well, and let me know if you’d ever like to make music together sometime.’

“Short, sweet, to the point. Not wanting to take up any more of his time, I hit send with a smile. Within 60 seconds, my inbox chimed with a new email. It was Bowie responding to the note I had just sent. ‘That was fast,’ I thought. I opened it…

“It read, ‘Well, that’s settled. Now fuck off.’”

Grohl adds: “My smile immediately went from that of a cat having an afternoon nap on a warm afternoon, too the shock and horror of your first prostate exam.”

Grohl says the pair continued an email exchange, and was relived to find that Bowie could just have been having a bit of fun.

He continues: “I could finally breathe knowing that David Bowie did not actually wish for me to ‘fuck off’ – or maybe he did, but in the nicest way possible, and even that was an honour.

“We ended the exchange with pleasantries, hoping to see each other again, and life went on.”

However, Grohl says it was his last contact with the star, as Bowie died at the age of 69 in January 2016 after an 18-month battle with cancer (opens in new tab).

Read the full story below.

Last month, Foo Fighters had to postpone their Van Tour (opens in new tab) due to the coronavirus pandemic. The shows had been set up in celebration of the band’s 25th anniversary.


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Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.