By Mesfin Fekadu
Thursday, February 14, 2013 9:19 am
NEW YORK — Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters played house band for Stevie Nicks, John Fogerty, Rick Springfield and others at a sold-out concert.
Grohl held an all-star, three-hour-plus show with those rock icons, who performed at the Sound City Studios in Van Nuys, Calif., in the late 1960s through the early ‘90s, and are the subjects of Grohl’s just-released directorial debut, the documentary “Sound City.”
Grohl kicked things off with Alain Johannes, yelling after the first song: “It’s going to be a long (expletive) night. You know that, right?”
It was, and the crowd at the Hammerstein Ballroom roared as Lee Ving of Fear, Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick, Brad Wilk of Rage Against the Machine and others took the stage.
Grohl played the guitar during most sets, sang background — sometimes lead — and also worked as drummer.
When Nicks, the last of the special guests (or “Sound City Players”) hit the stage, she emerged in all black and in glasses. Her raspy vocals were matched by Grohl on “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around.” He stared at her while she sang; she put her hands in the air.
Each act performed for nearly 25 minutes, and clips of the “Sound City” film played in between their sets. The film explores the then-rusty Sound City Studios where classic albums by Guns ‘n Roses, Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Neil Young, Van Halen, Nirvana, REO Speedwagon and others were created.
Wednesday night’s performers are part of the line-up for the film’s soundtrack, “Sound City: Real to Reel,” due out March 12.
“The thing Dave has put together — I’ve never seen anything like it,” Chris Goss yelled when performing with Wilk.
An excited and shirtless Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins played frontman with Nielsen and Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic.
“I get to sing Cheap Trick songs with Rich Nielsen. What is going on with my life? I can’t believe this,” the petite rocker said happily as he jumped around onstage.
Springfield performed his classic “Jessie’s Girl,” and Fogerty’s voice sounded clear when he sang six songs, earning loud cheers throughout his set.
But Nicks slowed down the rowdy and rock-filled night with “Landslide.” As she finished the song — and paused — a fan yelled out the last word of the groove to laughs from the crowd.
“Thank you,” she said. “You saved me.”