In addition to being America’s 244th birthday, this July 4 also marks the 25th anniversary of the 1995 debut, self-titled Foo Fighters album.

Dave Grohl, formerly the drummer for Nirvana, initially began Foo Fighters as a solo project following the death of Kurt Cobain in 1994.

In spite of — or, perhaps, because of — Nirvana’s massive popularity, Grohl took a minimalist approach to recording Foo Fighters. He wrote every song on the record himself, and, with the exception of a guitar solo by Greg Dulli of The Afghan Whigs on the track “X-Static,” Grohl played every instrument.

While Grohl was recording Foo Fighters, Tom Petty recruited him to play drums with The Heartbreakers during their performance on Saturday Night Live. Grohl was apparently then offered the role permanently, but decided to continue with the Foos project instead.

Once Foo Fighters was recorded, Grohl recruited a full band consisting of Nirvana touring guitarist Pat Smear, as well as bassist Nate Mendel and drummer Williams Goldsmith of Sunny Day Real Estate. Smear and Mendel are still in Foo Fighters, while drummer Taylor Hawkins and guitarist Chris Shiflett joined in 1997 and 1999, respectively.

Foo Fighters the album was a critical and commercial success, earning platinum certification and spawning the singles “Big Me,” “This Is a Call” and “I’ll Stick Around.” Foo Fighters the band, of course, would go on to become one of the biggest rock bands in the world, releasing eight more albums, six of which were also certified platinum. They’ve also become a celebrated live act, regularly performing multi-hour-long shows.

To celebrate their debut’s 25th anniversary, Foo Fighters had planned to play a massive show at FedExField in Landover, Maryland, on this July 4, but the concert’s been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

By Josh Johnson
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