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Sunday, July 12, 2015

Foo Fighters Independence Day Blow-Out

The Foo Fighters put together a great Fourth of July event celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the release of their first album. The all-day event featured many great opening acts, including Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Gary Clark Jr, Heart, Buddy Guy and LLCoolJ.  A rotating stage allowed the music to flow continuously, as each act's stage set-up was prepped on the back of the stage while another one was performing.

As much as I enjoyed the opening acts, the Foo Fighters were by far the best part of the show, putting on a full two-plus hour show encompassing songs from their entire 20 year career.  Questions as to how Dave Grohl would cope with his broken leg were answered by a giant ornate mobile throne that he explains was envisioned while he was recuperating  from leg surgery in the hospital.  Grohl milked the injury for all it was worth, repeatedly showing video of himself falling off the stage in Sweden, to the DC crowd's amusement. 

The concert opened with "Everlong", one of my favorites, and a great song, reminding me why Dave Letterman chose it for the final montage on his farewell show.  During one of the more powerful moments of the show, Grohl left his throne and walked to the end of the stage extension on crutches, to perform an acoustic rendition of "My Hero".  The last song in the encore-less set was "Best of You".  We ranted about radio overplay of this song in 2005, but a decade later it was a great finale.  As to be expected for July 4th, a fireworks show followed the concert.

The biggest disappointment of the day was the concert venue, RFK stadium.  Parking at the stadium cost an obscene $40.  The stadium staff did not seem prepared for an all-day concert venue.  The first set started at 1:30 PM, and by 4:00 PM trash cans were overflowing and the bathrooms were disgusting.  Long lines of people waited to get cash from the ATM's, because all stadium concessions were cash only.   Food and drink prices were jacked-up sky high.  The food was terrible, even by stadium standards.  Many of the food stands started to run out by ~7 PM (including all food stands in the upper levels).  This is especially obnoxious considering that no outside food or drink or readmission was allowed for an event that opened by 1PM and lasted past 10PM.