Dave Grohl recently told Zane Lowe Apple Music his early 90’s demos featured his worst vocal performances, which would include his 1992 ‘Pocketwatch’ cassette album.
“Even before I was in Nirvana, I sort of figured out how to record songs by myself, right? So I’d do the drums first, put a couple of guitars over it, put a bass on it, and then sing over it. But I never really played it for people, because A, I thought it sounded stupid, and B, my voice sounded like sh-t [expletive] . So I would keep these things to myself, and they were just kind of this exercise with this experiment that I would do every once in a while.
The entire time that Nirvana was out making records and playing shows and stuff, I would come home from tours and just write songs in my bedroom and record them in my basement. So when Nirvana ended, at first I didn’t want to do anything, of course. I didn’t want to join a band. I didn’t want to listen to the radio, play music. And then eventually I realized, “Wait. I’m 25 years old. My life is not over. So I need to celebrate every day, because I’m lucky to be alive.”
So I thought, “All right, I’m going to pick 12 or 13 of my favorite songs that I’ve ever recorded, and take them to the studio right down the street.” It’s actually the same studio that Nirvana recorded our last song at. It was f-cking [expletive] four blocks away from my house. So instead of having 15 minutes to make a song, I booked six days. Which to me was making the f-cking [expletive] White Album. That was forever in a studio. Got my amps and the drums ready, went down there, actually recorded the record in sequence.
That’s the sequence of the songs that I recorded. And so I just went down, we made a bunch of coffee, and I just started blasting through songs. First take on the drums, run in, put a couple of guitars over it, put the bass on it, next song. First take on the drums. Because I didn’t think it was going to be a record. It was more just fun.
It just felt good to be productive. By the end of the week, I took those tapes to a cassette duplication place, called it Foo Fighters, because I didn’t want to be Dave Grohl’s New Band, because I wanted the reaction to be just like the one that you had. And so I took it to this cassette duplication place, made 100 of them, gave one to Pat, met Nate and William, and was, “Hey, let’s… I mean, we got nothing better to do.” None of us were in bands at the time. Sunny Day had broken up. Pat was down here in Los Angeles. Nirvana was gone. It was, “Well let’s f-cking [expletive] have a good time.” Because that’s what music is for. It’s to heal you. It’s to give you relief, and joy, and happiness, and whatever. That was the beginning of the band. This band was meant to be this sort of healing continuation. We’re musicians. This is what we do. Let’s do this.”