Dave Grohl Reveals the Meanest Prank That Still ‘Haunts’ Him Almost 30 Years Later

Rockstars are known for living a crazy life. And Dave Grohl is one of the biggest rockstars in history. However, those who know Grohl think he’s a pretty great guy. But there is one small skeleton in his closet.

Before he made it big with Nirvana, Grohl played a mean prank on an unsuspecting karaoke singer that left him with a guilty conscience. Here’s what happened and why it’s so out of character for Grohl. 

Dave Grohl is a nice guy

Dave Grohl performs onstage
Dave Grohl | Ethan Miller/Getty Images

As the drummer for Nirvana, and then the frontman of The Foo Fighters, Grohl has a reputation. But it’s not the standard rock persona you may be expecting. Instead, Grohl is known all over the industry for being a nice guy. 

In 2008, the Guardian called Grohl “the nicest guy in rock” after he spent time visiting and helping out a fan with cerebral palsy. However, that isn’t the only thing Grohl’s done to earn his reputation.

As Spin reported, Grohl has given over a billion dollars to charities, he often sits in for other drummers as a favor and forbids fighting at his concerts. But the biggest reason Grohl’s a nice guy is his defense of gay fans by mocking the Westboro Baptist Church. 

Dave Grohl defends his music and gay fans

In 2011, Grohl interrupted a Westboro protest in Kansas. The church is infamous for being anti-gay and picketing soldier’s funerals with signs like, “God Hates Fags.” When Grohl heard that the group planned to protest his music for “promoting fornication and homosexuality,” he decided to put together a show for them to enjoy.

Grohl and the rest of his Foo Fighter bandmates dressed in hillbilly costumes and performed the gay love song Keep It Clean (Hot Buns), which includes lyrics like, “Think I’m In the mood for some hot-man muffins. Mmmm, sounds so fine, yes indeed.” 

When the song ended, Grohl told the crowd, which included angry Westboro members, “It takes all kinds. I don’t care if you’re black or white or purple or green, whether you’re Pennsylvanian or Transylvanian, Lady Gaga or Lady Antebellum, men loving women and women loving men and men loving men and women loving women—you all know we like to watch that. But what I’d like to say is, God, bless America, y’all!”

The prank that Nirvana played on a karaoke singer

Although Grohl is considered a nice guy, he has made some mean mistakes in his past. During an interview with iHeart Radio, Grohl told the story of a prank that still haunts him today. One night, when Nirvana was just beginning to get recognized for their talent, Grohl went out with Kurt Cobain, Krist Novoselic, and Novoselic’s ex-wife, Shelli Dilley, to a karaoke night. 

“At the time we were being kind of groomed by all these different record companies,” Grohl said. “We were getting [bid] on by all these [record labels]…but we had so many A&R guy cards. And we got wasted one night and gave an A&R guy card to a karaoke singer.”

Grohl continued to explain. “That’s bad,” he said. “…I don’t remember which — it was either Kurt or me or Krist — and we gave it to her under the impression that we were an A&R guy and that we were gonna make her famous.”

But don’t think that Grohl is still laughing about their mean joke. He admitted that he still feels bad about the whole thing. “I still think about it,” Grohl said. “…I feel like that person still has that card. …Damnit.”

While the prank Grohl and his friends played was pretty terrible, it’s nice to know that he’s not as perfect as he may seem. Even celebrities make mistakes, and this prank is one Grohl is regretting to this day.