6:29am PT by Erin Carlson
2012 Democratic Convention: Dave Grohl Mocks ABBA, Possibly Mitt Romney in Charlotte
This night, Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters will perform ahead of President Obama's speech at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.
The night before, the Foos burned the midnight oil onstage at the Fillmore, which packed about 1,000 audience members, ripping through a set that lasted nearly four hours and stretched past midnight. The occasion: a concert benefit for Rock the Vote, an organization aiming to get young people registered to vote.
"Tonight we play as long as we want and as much as we want ... it's an open bar right?" said Grohl, launching into a new-ish song, "Dear Rosemary," from the group's 2011 album Wasting Light.
The band played many of their hits ("Monkey Wrench," "Times Like These," "The Pretender," "My Hero") as well as a cover of Tom Petty's "Breakdown" and The Who's "Young Man Blues," for which he led a raucous call-and-response, wailing these lyrics:
"You know in the old days/When a young man was a strong man/All the people they'd step back When a young man walked by/But you know nowadays It's the old man/He's got all the money/ And a young man ain't got nothin' in the world these days."
While there were no overt displays of political protest, the song could possibly be read as a dig toward Mitt Romney and the Republican party, especially given Grohl's planned DNC appearance at the Bank of America Stadium alongside Mary J. Blige, James Taylor and Earth, Wind and Fire.
At several points, Grohl openly pondered what to play next, as if he were running out of material. After ostensibly ending the show around 11 p.m., the Foos came out for an extended encore, resurrecting their mid-'90s single "Winnebago," among others, as a steady stream of well-heeled politicos in wrap dresses and suits trickled in from the convention center. (Bill Clinton's address did run long.)
"We have a lot of f--king songs," Grohl remarked.
During the course of the night, there were many requests for "Freebird." Grohl's response: "'Freebird is f---king hard. ... There's only one band that can do it: Sugar Ray!"
All the while, the blunt, sarcastic frontman wore a black-and-gold ABBA T-shirt, though it was hard to tell how ironically.
"Do you guys like my ABBA shirt? My No. 1 goal in live is to write a song that's as good as a f---king ABBA song. .... It's not the logo. It's f---king 'Dancing Queen.'"
He added: "I wish I could write songs like that. It would make it easy."