A deep dive into “Everlong”

The Foo Fighter’s “Everlong” is one hell of a song, but it also happens to be one of my favorite music videos of all time too. I had been meaning to write a post about it for a while, but with the recent passing of Taylor Hawkins, the band’s drummer, it seemed like a good time to look at this song again.

The Music Video

The music video for “Everlong” was directed by Michel Gondry. The video stars the band members and uses practical effects to pay homage to classic horror films. Pat Smear and Nate Mendel play the villains in Teddy Boy style clothes. Dave Grohl plays the hero of this video and Taylor Hawkins plays the role of the heroine. Taylor joined the band after this album was finished, so what we are actually hearing is Grohl’s drumming on this song. If you are interested in reading about all of the references packed into the video, check out this article on Kerrang.

The Sonic Youth influence

Dave Grohl wrote the Everlong riff between recording sessions. He dug the riff, but was worried at first it sounded too much like a Sonic Youth song. I never picked up on that before, but I can totally hear it. When he played the song for members of Sonic Youth they were very encouraging.

The Howard Stern effect

“Everlong” is often considered the Foo Fighter’s biggest hit, but apparently it wasn’t as big a hit when it first came out. Despite the killer video, the song only had modest success until about a year later when Grohl made an appearance on the Howard Stern show. Stern requested “Everlong” so Grohl did a stripped down acoustic version of the song on the show. It was the success of that appearance that breathed new life back into this song and cemented it as a hit.

The Final Letterman show

The Foo Fighters were the musical guest on the final episode of The Letterman show. During their appearance they played “Everlong”.