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The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music

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So, I've written a book.

Having entertained the idea for years, and even offered a few questionable opportunities ("It's a piece of cake! Just do 4 hours of interviews, find someone else to write it, put your face on the cover, and voila!") I have decided to write these stories just as I have always done, in my own hand. The joy that I have felt from chronicling these tales is not unlike listening back to a song that I've recorded and can't wait to share with the world, or reading a primitive journal entry from a stained notebook, or even hearing my voice bounce between the Kiss posters on my wall as a child.

This certainly doesn't mean that I'm quitting my day job, but it does give me a place to shed a little light on what it's like to be a kid from Springfield, Virginia, walking through life while living out the crazy dreams I had as young musician. From hitting the road with Scream at 18 years old, to my time in Nirvana and the Foo Fighters, jamming with Iggy Pop or playing at the Academy Awards or dancing with AC/DC and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, drumming for Tom Petty or meeting Sir Paul McCartney at Royal Albert Hall, bedtime stories with Joan Jett or a chance meeting with Little Richard, to flying halfway around the world for one epic night with my daughters…the list goes on. I look forward to focusing the lens through which I see these memories a little sharper for you with much excitement.

384 pages, Hardcover

First published October 5, 2021

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About the author

Dave Grohl

14 books914 followers
David Eric Grohl is an American musician. He rose to fame as the drummer for the grunge band Nirvana and sustained a high level of post-Nirvana with the alternative rock band Foo Fighters. He is also the drummer and co-founder of the rock supergroup Them Crooked Vultures.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 11,310 reviews
Profile Image for Lisa of Troy.
389 reviews3,182 followers
February 8, 2023
Perfect for anyone who loves music or emotional intelligence!

Before you do anything, open YouTube and type in "Dave Grohl Plays Nirvana NYC 2021."

This book spoke to me as a music lover. When I was in middle school, I was given a choice: a radio or TV. Of course, we were too broke to afford cable TV so the choice was easy: radio! I must have listened to Slide by the Goo Goo Dolls at least 2,000 times.

The Storyteller was an extremely entertaining memoir where Dave's love of music shines and shines through. Dave strolls through his childhood and his days in the business, primarily with Scream, Nirvana, and the Foo Fighters. Although Dave never mentions it, he is simply a master in emotional intelligence. He spent years touring in a van with numerous other bandmates. If I had to tour in a van, I would not last more than 24 hours. Recently, there was a lawsuit filed by the baby on the cover of Nirvana's most famous cover (now a man in his 30's) who is claiming that he was taken advantage of and would like the cover to be altered (despite the fact that he has reenacted the cover scene many times and has stated that he didn't really do anything for Nirvana). When Dave Grohl was asked what he thought, "I have many ideas of how we should alter that cover but we'll see what happens. We'll let you know. I'm sure we'll come up with something good. I think there is much more to look forward to and much more to life than getting bogged down in those kinds of things." This guy is a rock star just for saying that! Instead of cutting this freeloader down to size, he went positive and said that he has a lot of creative ideas. How cool is that?!

The Storyteller had me laughing out loud often. I never even knew who Dave Grohl was before reading this book so you don't have to know who he is to enjoy it. For this book, I practiced immersion reading (listening to the audio while following along in a printed copy). The audiobook was read by Dave Grohl himself. He has an incredible rich voice that was a pleasure just to listen to. There is also about 10 minutes of bonus material in the audiobook that was not in my Kindle version.

Overall, a must read if you really love music! Rock on!

2023 Reading Schedule
Jan Alice in Wonderland
Feb Notes from a Small Island
Mar Cloud Atlas
Apr On the Road
May The Color Purple
Jun Bleak House
Jul Bridget Jones’s Diary
Aug Anna Karenina
Sep The Secret History
Oct Brave New World
Nov A Confederacy of Dunces
Dec The Count of Monte Cristo

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Profile Image for Meike.
1,474 reviews2,312 followers
October 11, 2021
After listening to this audiobook, I love Dave Grohl even more - how is that fucking possible?! His memoir is full of warmth, humor, absorbing behind-the-scenes stories of rock'n'roll adventure, heartbreak and mischief, and, yes spirituality, but not of the esoteric kind, but of the "music, friends and family are my religion"-conviction. While other rock stars spend their careers trying to build elaborate badass images, Grohl is like "my mom is my best friend, and my daughter taught me the names of all Disney princesses; and oh, I partied with Pantera, played a stadium rock show with a smashed leg and, you know, changed the landscape of rock with two of the biggest bands ever to exist on this planet. Now let me tell you about my friend Tom Petty. Isn't life wild?"

Grohl seems like an extremely hard-working, humble, intelligent guy who has never fallen into the trap of rockstar kayfabe, he is not chasing the idea of a public persona that is created in other people's minds, and you have to admire him for his zero-fucks-given attitude. He also refrains from ventilating gossip or attacking people who wronged him, and some parts of the text suggest how Grohl tends to overcome setbacks: E.g., his infamous phase of drinking and depression after Kurt's passing is mostly turned into a kind of rebirth, an episode in which he decided to take a new leap - which certainly isn't wrong, but you could probably frame the whole thing very differently. But Grohl didn't - and his determination is probably key to his achievements. This memoir mostly remains upbeat, intending to inspire, and there's nothing wrong with it, but it also means that aspects like the difficult dynamics in Nirvana remain enigmatic and key personal turning points like Grohl's divorce are hardly mentioned. Did this take away from my enjoyment of the book? Not at all.

This guy is a rock'n'roll unicorn, and I could listen to him for days.
Profile Image for Regina.
1,136 reviews2,859 followers
December 5, 2021
Kudos to Dave Grohl for keeping it classy and crafting a memoir that exudes his appreciation for the musical life he’s lived without resorting to titillating gossip and scandalous revelations.

The Storyteller is a collection of the Foo Fighters front man’s reminiscences that will delight music lovers, Gen-Xers, and readers who just love honest self portraits written with eloquence. Even as someone with a pretty neutral take on the guy, I hung on every word. I picked the book up not because I love Nirvana or Grohl or grunge, but because it’s said to be a great read. And I’m here to confirm… it is.

Don’t expect to learn new details about Kurt Cobain’s death or anything tawdry like that. Do expect to listen to how much Dave Grohl loves his mom, being a dad, playing onstage with friends and famous rockers, and just generally living life. The storyteller, indeed.

4.5 stars

Blog: https://www.confettibookshelf.com/
Profile Image for Rowan.
96 reviews133 followers
April 17, 2022
I miss Taylor Hawkins. I figured reading this would be the next best thing to hanging with Dave during this sad time. It felt like sitting down in a bar with him while he shared random stories from his life. He’s certainly a born storyteller and I found this a captivating read. It was refreshingly different from the usual rock bios. I even loved the way it was laid out; from the chapters and titles, to the inclusion of black and white photos and postcards scattered among the pages.

Dave’s story is inspiring, and will no doubt motivate many musicians or those pursuing anything creative.

“I was read the riot act and given a most hopeless life forecast of poverty and despair by my father and the guidance counselor.”

I didn’t expect the Law of Attraction and manifestation to feature so prominently.

“I have to think that I manifested my destiny that night, utilizing the Law of Attraction, calling upon the universe, tapping into a higher power, or whatever. I just know that today, the success I prayed for in my carport that night has found me.”

Being a fellow drummer and music nerd, The Storyteller resonated on many levels. Dave's love for music is the heart of the book, and how it helped shape his identity and journey through life. He’s the ultimate music fan, and the book is filled with countless anecdotes and stories of him meeting his idols. In fact, you could argue he neglects his personal life (mention of wife, and exploring more heavy issues in-depth) in favour of “the time I met..” – but it helps when the stories feature my favourite musicians and he writes so well.

My favourite parts of the book involved Dave talking drums and his career; particularly his early days touring in vans, joining Nirvana and forming Foo Fighters. I loved how fondly Dave spoke of Australia and was surprised at the unexpected supernatural twists that stories occasionally took. His dedication to “the show must go on” despite various hurdles and catastrophic injuries was admirable and blew my mind. The way Dave lives life itself is inspiring and you can’t help but want to take life by the scruff of the neck after reading.

“Every day was a blank page waiting to write itself.”

Reading of his grief upon losing Kurt made me hurt too.

“If only he could have seen the joy that his music brought to the world, maybe he could have found his own.”

And I couldn’t help thinking of how Dave’s doing since losing Taylor. One of the nicest parts of reading The Storyteller (besides the overflowing love he has for his amazing Mum) was that Taylor Hawkins was very much alive in the pages of the book.

“Tearing through the room like an F5 tornado of hyperactive joy was Taylor Hawkins, my brother from another mother, my best friend, a man for whom I would take a bullet.”

I couldn’t put this book down and didn’t want it to end. I hope it's not the last we see of Dave's writing. An impressive collection of stories and 'moments' from a man who has achieved so much in life.

“I had built an entire career on abiding by one very simple rule: you fake it till you make it.”
Profile Image for Char .
1,615 reviews1,468 followers
November 3, 2021
If you listen to this, (and you must listen to it) make sure you keep listening after the credits.

This is a phenomenal, inspiring book, that brought me to tears several times. Dave Grohl is an energetic, committed, hardworking mofo that loves his mom.

If you’re a fan, you’ll love him even more, if you’re not, let this serve as a primer on how to never give up.

All the stars!

*Thanks to my local library for the free audio download. Libraries RULE! *
Profile Image for Jon Reading Books.
156 reviews56 followers
November 16, 2021
Grohl's prose is surprisingly effective. If this was written without a ghostwriter, it's an admirable effort. However, I found the overall work to be a bit scattered and shallow. Grohl jumps back and forth through time a bit too often, and grants entire chapters to episodes of questionable interest. I'd have appreciated a bit more of a deep dive into some of the things that have made Grohl's life so special; his jump from high school student to international touring drummer of the band Scream seemed so abrupt that I almost felt I had skipped a chapter.

In one moment, Grohl is talking about his first girlfriend. Then, it seemed, in the next, he was playing a show with Scream in the Netherlands. How did such a jump change a teenager? How did this new perspective alter his worldview, cause him to grow as a human being? These sorts of engaging questions are abandoned for amusing, though ultimately disposable anecdotes about being chased through European alleyways by junkies and skinheads. This issue is exacerbated by Grohl's questionable inclusion of chapters on seemingly disposable events, such as being hit in the head as a child and the claims that Grohl does not feel physical pain.

The Nirvana chapters are also comparatively light. What ultimately sold me on this book was not so much Dave Grohl himself (of whom I'm not that big a fan) but Grohl's view of Kurt Cobain (of whom I am most definitely a big fan). Grohl and Cobain lived together in the pacific Northwest during their time in Nirvana, but very little of Cobain is shared beyond what everyone already knows: that he was a brilliant songwriter, that he was a depressive, that he was staunchly anti-establishment. So desperate for Cobain crumbs was I that I found Grohl's mention of Cobain's endless love of strawberry milk to be one of my favorite tidbits in the book.

Too much of this reads as a surface-level description of Grohl's life, and the man—although undoubtedly having lived an incredibly interesting, eventful life—seems to lack the insight as to what, exactly, makes his life so incredible and eventful. Thus we're regaled with pitter-patter, here-and-there stories which seem scattershot and don't dive into any real meaning or cohesive theme which drives Grohl's experience, and seem more instead like a smattering of unrelated tidbits from an old-but-gold rocker. Which is fine, if that's what you're looking for. But Grohl has been there for such monumental events in recent music history that I'd hoped for a bit more.

Foo Fighters and Grohl fans will undoubtedly enjoy this, but those of us on the outside of those descriptors will likely be left wanting more. A solid effort nonetheless, but there's nothing profound to be had here.
Profile Image for MarilynW.
1,069 reviews2,673 followers
February 10, 2023
The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music
Dave Grohl (Author/Narrator)

After reading reviews I knew I wanted to listen to Dave Grohl tell his stories. He does a fantastic job and if he ever had more free time, he could make a career out of narrating. Yes, I know, he's way too busy with his other career.

Decades ago I attended a Gladys Knight and the Pips concert and a ZZ Top concert. I was so out of my element at both due to a problem with noises and crowds. Still I was interested in music and was surprised by how many of the people that Grohl mentions in his book that I was at least a little familiar with. But I didn't really need to know all these people. Grohl is a fantastic storyteller and I enjoyed listening to his voice and his stories. A lot of the stories had me searching for names and events so I could refresh my memory or learn more about people, places, and happenings. This was an enjoyable listen and it even took me down some long forgotten memories of my own.

First published October 5, 2021
Profile Image for Rebecca.
212 reviews158 followers
January 10, 2022
Mr Dave Grohl is most certainly a Storyteller, and each story he shares is a journey through music history. Captivating from start to finish.

He describes his childhood and teen years in Virginia, where he first learnt to play the drums with only one lesson, practicing with pillows and keeping rhythm with his teeth! He shares his decision to leave school and follow his dreams to join the punk rock band Scream in the late 80s. Then joining Nirvana in the early 90s and being catapulted to mega stardom after the success of single ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ and the album Nevermind. He also goes into the eventual collapse of the band after the death of Kurt Cobain, and how he coped with that tragedy. It’s important to note this book is not a part bio on Nirvana nor is any ‘dirt’ spilled. So if you’re looking for that this may not be the one for you.

There is of course, plenty on the Foo Fighters and all the crazy adventures from some of their tours over the years. Including a chapter about a tour in Australia for Big Day Out on the Gold Coast in 2000 which resulted in a drunk driving arrest (which I remember was all over the news down here) lol

There are stories of fatherhood and the love and pride he has for his daughters. He shares special moments meeting his idols, Paul McCartney, AC/DC and Little Richard to name a few.

Overall, The Storyteller is funny, honest and full of amazing personal stories from an incredibly talented, down to earth, wonderful man who has created music that is loved by millions around the world.

I will leave you with these beautiful words he had to say about Kurt Cobain and his friend Jimmy Swanson (also passed).

“These deaths still resonate like a long echo throughout my life, and not a day goes by when I don't think of Kurt and Jimmy. There are simple reminders: A song on the radio that Jimmy would air-drum to while driving his old, beat-up Renault car. The pink strawberry milk that Kurt would sometimes buy at the gas station as a treat for himself. The smell of the cheap Brut cologne that Jimmy would douse himself in each morning, for no one to enjoy but himself. The Elmer Fudd hat that Kurt would often wear to hide his face from the public, and the white-framed Jackie O glasses that became his trademark. It seems that everywhere I turn there is a reminder to be found, and I have come to a place where they no longer break my heart; they make me smile.

But it's when I sit down at a drum set that I feel Kurt the most. It's not often that I play the songs that we played together, but when I sit on that stool, I can still picture him in front of me, wrestling with his guitar as he screamed his lungs raw into the microphone. Just like staring at the sun will burn a spot into your retinas, his image will forever be burned in mine when I look past my drums to the audience before me. He will always be there.”
Profile Image for Charles.
175 reviews
November 11, 2021
Contrary to every second reviewer so far, I’m not the Foo Fighters' #1 fan, nor am I obsessed with Dave Grohl. I remain a product of my generation, however, and Grohl has been in my life for the last 30 years; when I stumbled upon this book by chance, this fall, a mere two weeks after it came out, I picked it up on the spot.

I’m glad I did. This reads like an extensive road trip in the best possible company for a Gen Xer. Loved the tour anecdotes. Loved the humble beginnings and the candid life lessons, sinking in one by one and retold with the advantage of a more worldly perspective, decades after. Loved the portrait of the artist as a family man, too.

Worship doesn’t come easily to me, but respect sometimes develops over time – for certain authentic bands and people. Grohl definitely sealed the deal with this publication.

Maybe I'll buy the t-shirt, one day.
January 18, 2023
Dave Grohl might be THE nicest guy in rock ‘n’ roll. He knows his career as a musician is enviable, he knows he makes great music, and he knows that everyone, even the likes of Sir Paul McCartney, wants to be his friend. Yet in his book of stories, the aptly named, The Storyteller, Grohl is nothing but humble and grateful for his family, his friends, and his music.

Grohl talks of his modest upbringing in Virginia and the years he spent roughing it on the road with Scream. Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Them Crooked Vultures – no band is missed. And most endearingly, he makes sure we know how much he loves his mom, his wife, and his three daughters. This man will literally fly across the world and back for those who mean the most to him.

Grohl’s stories are touching and hilarious. Some are jaw-dropping. A few are also tinged with sadness for the reader, seeing as he wrote The Storyteller prior to the passing of Foo Fighters drummer, Taylor Hawkins, who he more than once refers to as his “best friend” and “brother from another mother.” Oh, Dave …

If you enjoy audiobooks, by all means allow Grohl to share these stories with you himself. After listening to his gentle voice in my ear for nearly a week, I miss him, now that I’ve heard the last of his tales.

And like Sir Paul, I want to be Dave’s friend, too.

Can I, Dave? Please?
February 22, 2022
Finally finished this amazing audiobook. My husband and I were listening to it in the car, and it seemed like for months we were either with other people or not going anywhere far enough away to put in the time. Well, today was the day that we took a long trip and were able to get it finished.

Over the years I've grown in appreciation for Dave Grohl's musicianship and his dedication to music. This book is just thoroughly delightful, because it is him telling stories about his life--from growing up outside of Washington DC (funny aside: he and I have the exact same birthday so I could totally relate to so much of what he was talking about during the years when he was growing up.

He is also a tried and true music fan. He loves a wide variety of music and those who create it, and is just as much in awe of people like Paul McCartney as the rest of us would be. He doesn't take anything he has done or experienced in his life for granted, and his love for his family is evident on every page.

His humor is fantastic and it comes across wonderfully in the audiobook. His disdain for Kurt Cobain's turtle is palpable and made me burst out laughing every time he mentioned it. His experiences with his Seattle "haunted house" were equally as funny, and he never ever takes himself too seriously.

Even if you're not a fan of the Foo Fighters or Nirvana (or Queens of the Stone Age, etc), I would venture a guess that you'd enjoy this book anyway. Grohl is a true storyteller, and truly a delight to listen to.
Profile Image for Elyse Walters.
3,923 reviews35.4k followers
January 3, 2023
Audiobook read by Dave Grohl
…..10 hours and 35 minutes.

I had to stop listening to this *WONDERFUL* audiobook to open my Apple-music-playlist to listen to dozens of songs….

“Don’t Stop Believin” by Journey…..

“Best of You”…. by Foo Fighters

“Stay With Me”….(Sam Smith singing)

Led Zeppelin > “Stairway to Heaven”

Tom Petty > “Wild Flowers”

“Photograph” > Ed Sheeran


This audiobook was all-encompassing passionately profoundly brilliant!!
…with added bonus-gifts to any reader/music lover who takes their own reflective time to ‘STOP’…. listen to a few favorite songs >
…..to remember the good and hurtful times - cry - laugh - get in touch with the depths of love in one’s own heart …..

Dave Grohl is not only down-to-earth-cool, real, an artist’s hero, human as anyone can be, but he epitomizes the richness of life itself!!

- [ ]
Profile Image for preoccupiedbybooks.
447 reviews992 followers
January 19, 2022
A heart-warming, uplifting look back at some of the highs and lows of Dave Grohl's amazing life!

I do not read non-fiction much at all, but when I saw Regina's review of this, I knew I had to get it on audible! Why? Because it's Dave Grohl!

I think a lot of people would enjoy this audio even if they didn't know of Mr Grohl, but if you are a fan, like I am, then you're in for a treat! I was, and am still a massive Nirvana and Foo Fighters fan, so delighted in hearing his tales and memories of both bands. There isn't much on the Nirvana years, but then, unfortunately, he only spent a fraction of his life in that band.

I remember seeing the Foo Fighters at Reading Festival (pronounced Redding) in 2000 (I think) and they absolutely rocked it! But what I remember the most, is that people got really over excited and surged forwards, and Dave kept stopping and asking people to be careful and to help people up. He wouldn't play again until everyone was up and safe.

Although not chronological, The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music covered some really interesting parts of Dave's life, was very entertaining, without being gossipy and I could just feel his love of music and life! He was a fantastic narrator, his rich voice drawing me in, and I found myself wishing I was his friend! He made me laugh several times and swears just as much as I do ha ha!

I just liked his down to Earth attitude, he came across so humble and thankful for everything he has, and just seems like such a good guy. A family man, he tries hard to be a good son, husband, father and friend. Dave seems such a genuine guy!
I had never really thought about why he went from drumming, to being lead singer, and found this part of the book really emotional. I was sad listening to how his friend and bandmate's suicide made him spiral, but I am so glad that music saved him!

In between listening to this, I obviously binge listened to the Foo Fighter's greatest hits for about two weeks!

I think I love him even more now, and would honestly listen to anything he narrated, even if he did go off on a little tangent about aliens and ghosts at one point lol

To sum up, this is a must listen for fans of Dave's bands, but that you might enjoy it also if you just love music!
Oh and if you do listen, make sure you listen past the end credits, I only did accidentally, but was treated to one more extra treat of a story!
Profile Image for Simone James.
Author 10 books11.9k followers
June 24, 2022
I loved every minute of this. The audio is a MUST!
Profile Image for JD.
680 reviews285 followers
January 14, 2022
'Though I have never been one to collect "stuff", I do collect moments'

With that Dave Grohl takes you on his crazy journey through rock 'n roll from his time as a punk rocker touring in the back of a van in the 80's to playing sold out stadiums today, and how he was part of a rock revolution in the 90's. This is not his full biography as there are gaps, but it is his stories that he tells that had a profound impact on him and all the chapters has a lesson in living in them. What I also found endearing is that he is a family man and that he admits that his greatest achievement is his family. His musical journey is a soundtrack of my youth through the bands he played (Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Queens of the Stone Age) and his songs always bring back good memories for me. Highly recommended for fellow rockers.
Profile Image for Karen.
562 reviews1,104 followers
February 26, 2022
I believe what they say that Dave Grohl IS the nicest person in Rock Music.
I thoroughly enjoyed his stories, encompassing his youth, career, parents, wife and daughters… his awe in meeting fellow musicians, and his remembrance of Kurt (not a whole lot on Kurt)
Dave keeps it classy throughout!
I listened to the audio!
Profile Image for Jill Long.
1,012 reviews4 followers
October 15, 2021
I loved listening to Dave Grohl narrate the book. He brought the book to life with his voice. However, I was disappointed in the book. One reason is that although there are a lot of stories none of them go deep. I felt that these were just surface layer stories he would tell to any fan or person he wasn't close to. He skims over the juiciest parts that fans and readers want to know about...the ups and downs of being in Nirvana, starting the Foo Fighters, his personal life. Another thing that I didn't like is the sequence of the story. The timeline jumps around constantly. This was confusing as a listener to the audiobook. I never knew where we were in his life when the stories were taking place.
Profile Image for Ginger.
739 reviews344 followers
November 30, 2022
So, I’ve got to rate this 5 stars.
I'll lose my honorary grunge badge if I don't. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I knew that I would like The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music but I was not expecting to love this book as much as I did.

Back in the 90s, I loved this dude from the years of being in Scream and then Nirvana.
When he started The Foo Fighters after Kurt Cobain's death, I was impressed with that as well.
In fact, I'm going to their concert this year in Seattle and I can't wait!

If you can get this on audio, I think you’ll enjoy it more.

I’m sure the printed version is good but to hear Dave Grohl talk about his life, his music career and now being a Dad of three girls, it’s even better!

His enthusiasm and humor are top notch in this!

As a grunge fan rocking flannel, cut up jeans with paint and bobby pins, and also purple hair back in the 90s, I loved the parts of the book with his days with Nirvana and how Kurt Cobain’s suicide really affected him.
This was the part of the book that I really wanted to listen too. I can’t tell you how many times I listened to Bleach and Nevermind back in the day.

I also lost a best friend in the 90s to suicide and it’s tough to go through this at an early age.
The questions of "Why?", "Could I have done more?" and "What the fuck?!" don’t really go away.

I loved to hear about what music means to him and how he’s always trying to be genuine and uniquely himself, even if others don’t like it.
I love this about him and wish more celebrities and people in general cared less about other’s opinions, and cared more about being yourself and happy!

If you are a big fan of music, especially alternative or rock, check this one out.
I don't think you'll regret it!

And even if you're not a big fan of music and alternative/rock in general, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed by this book.
It’s well put together; the pacing is great and it’s extremely entertaining to listen to Dave talk. He's actually a great narrator!
Profile Image for Brandice.
825 reviews
December 31, 2021
Dave Grohl’s memoir, The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music, was very good. I highly recommend the audiobook, which Dave narrates himself. He is truly a storyteller — I appreciated his humor, animation, and ability to tell both funny, entertainment focused stories and those with more depth that were personal.

I honestly had very little familiarity and knowledge of Dave or The Foo Fighters or Nirvana before reading The Storyteller. Of course I know the classic song “Smells Like Teen Spirit” but wasn’t working with much beyond that. I share this to emphasize that you don’t need to be a huge fan of the bands to enjoy this book.

Dave grew up in Virginia. He dropped out of high school to join a band, Scream, and traveled the country in a van with his bandmates. Eventually he joined Nirvana and after Kurt Cobain’s death, formed The Foo Fighters.

While music is appropriately a huge part of Dave’s story, I really enjoyed the stories he shared about his family — His mom being his number one fan, through and through, and his clear commitment to and love for his wife and their 3 daughters.
Profile Image for Scott.
1,711 reviews117 followers
February 27, 2022
"Music had become my counselor when I needed guidance, my friend when I felt alone, my father when I needed love, my preacher when I needed hope, and my partner when I needed to belong." -- page 364

I tend to tread carefully around show-biz memoirs and autobiographies as the celebrity author may start a lot of (or is too many?) sentences with "I," repeatedly mention to the audience how gosh-darn fabulous they are, and/or insufferably name-drop every famous person that they have encountered in their career. Still, I consider Dave Grohl to be one of those guys that is help keeping rock music alive - I was fortunate to catch the Foo Fighters in 2005 at the Spectrum (and may that legendary concert venue rest in peace) in Philadelphia, and I fondly remember that night with the happily loud and fiercely high-energy performance - in these days of its sadly waning worldwide popularity. So is this musician - now 30+ years (!) into his career between two renowned rock bands - any good at penning a book like he is at writing lyrics? Yes. Grohl pleasantly comes across as a somewhat typical suburban native who still loves his idyllic hometown on the outskirts of Washington D.C. as well as his supportive mother, dotes on his three young daughters, and likely awakens in the middle of the night to hug himself with joy that he has gotten to share the stage with rock legends ranging from Paul McCartney to Joan Jett. (Grohl's sincere love of music is evident throughout the text. He may now be a 'name' act on his own but he absolutely loves to give real compliments to dozens of folks or acts, whether they be obscure or world-famous, who have inspired him throughout his life.) Barring the sections on the passing of Kurt Cobain, this was an often humorous and upbeat self-work from a man who seems genuinely thankful for and still amazed by his various experiences.
Profile Image for Lee.
339 reviews8 followers
October 22, 2021
Nirvana was my favourite band when I was 15. I bought Nevermind the day it was released (on cassette!) after reading several rave notices, which referenced The Pixies, Husker Du, Sonic Youth et al. A lot of bands were subject to such (in their cases) overblown press (remember The Vines? The greatest band since Nirvana, according to NME. How about The Music? 'The best new band in Britain') but I was all-in every time, on the off-chance that, this time, it was all true. I went out and bought the album from the one place in the town next to mine that sold music, ran up to my bedroom wondering what all the fuss was about (probably very little; remember Mudhoney? Did they ever pay Iggy Pop royalties?), put the tape in, pressed play and waited.

Pretty soon, everything made sense. I'd been waiting for those songs and the wait was over, and I was grateful and overwhelmed. This was the stuff, finally! Once the shock of that melodic battering ram had worn off a little, I started thinking about what made the songs work, why they were so much better than everyone else's, what the three (!) musicians were doing to create such a thrilling blitz of noise. It seemed so maddeningly simple. Guitar, bass and drums played like the world was about to end. And this the miraculous result. Conclusion: whatever these three men had, they had more of it than anyone else.

The next album was different, but Nevermind was unrepeatable. In Utero was less urgent, more interesting, more sombre. Whatever they had was still in evidence, had been dialled down, was lying in wait. And then it was all over.

I went back to Bleach, an album I'd never really warmed to, and which confirmed that only with Dave Grohl in the line-up was the alchemy right. Whatever weird confluence of luck and judgement that had brought the Scream drummer into Nirvana had turned them into the world's greatest rock act. Those drums drove Cobain and Novoselic to places they would otherwise never have reached. It was a shame it was all done after two albums. There were no other Kurt Cobains to go around.

The NME featured Grohl's next venture, Foo Fighters, in which it seemed he'd be playing lead guitar, not drums. Oh crap, I thought -- this could be like Cast, a dire Las spin-off. Don't besmirch the legacy, Dave! But I was right behind it, desperate for it to be at least passable. If so, I'd just say it was great. Nirvana would live on! Sort of.

I was a little older by now, but the process was still basically the same. Get on the bus, buy the album, take it home, sit with it and see what was what. Though this time, it felt cruel. Nirvana were not coming back. Here was the unquestionably great drummer doing a potentially embarrassing Paul McCartney circa Abbey Road, the only man in the studio, playing all the instruments, everyone else gone and no longer under any illusions.

And yet that Foo Fighters debut was pretty great, and those were definitely Grohl drums. It was enough. Many of the songs were clearly, openly about Nirvana, about Kurt Cobain, but the misery, the parlayed dyspepsia had all been spent, distilled and bottled into those two landmark albums. The Foo Fighters were fun, even when the lead singer was shrieking, even when the song was a sad one. And though they'd never be great, they would be good, and they would last, and they'd put a smile on your face whenever they came on the radio.

This memoir is funny and excellent company. It's like a really good Foo Fighters song: too likeably formulaic to hit the heights, but never dull. And the bits about the Nirvana years -- featuring a horrible apartment in which Grohl struggles to sleep on a couch beside Cobain's pet turtle which taps on its tank throughout the night -- are the best of it.

'These deaths still resonate like a long echo throughout my life, and not a day goes by when I don’t think of Kurt and Jimmy. There are simple reminders: A song on the radio that Jimmy would air-drum to while driving his old, beat-up Renault car. The pink strawberry milk that Kurt would sometimes buy at the gas station as a treat for himself. The smell of the cheap Brut cologne that Jimmy would douse himself in each morning, for no one to enjoy but himself. The Elmer Fudd hat that Kurt would often wear to hide his face from the public, and the white-framed Jackie O glasses that became his trademark. It seems that everywhere I turn there is a reminder to be found, and I have come to a place where they no longer break my heart; they make me smile.

But it’s when I sit down at a drum set that I feel Kurt the most. It’s not often that I play the songs that we played together, but when I sit on that stool, I can still picture him in front of me, wrestling with his guitar as he screamed his lungs raw into the microphone. Just like staring at the sun will burn a spot into your retinas, his image will forever be burned in mine when I look past my drums to the audience before me. He will always be there.'
Profile Image for Peter Boyle.
480 reviews587 followers
January 3, 2022
Dave Grohl has often been referred to as the nicest man in rock. And he certainly lives up to that title in this memoir - the Foo Fighters frontman makes great company, telling many colourful stories about his time in the music business, but never forgetting where he came from, or the people who helped him along the way.

Grohl was raised in Springfield, Virginia, mostly by his mother, a teacher. He didn't really see eye to eye with his Dad, a Republican political consultant. When cousin Tracey introduced Grohl to punk rock at age 13, his eyes were opened, and he knew what he wanted to do with his life. He began to dedicate his free time to learning the drums, and somehow ended up wangling an audition for Scream, one of his favourite bands. He nailed it and even though he was only 17 at the time, was asked to join the group as a full-time member. He toured extensively with Scream, though they remained an underground band, never attaining mainstream popularity. Everything changed when he agreed to join Nirvana, who of course became the biggest music sensation on the planet. Kurt Cobain's death had a major effect on Grohl, but he eventually pulled himself together to establish the Foo Fighters. This venture has been a huge success, and he spends his days touring the world with the band and raising three daughters with his wife Jordyn.

Grohl comes off as such a likeable guy in the book. He has managed to stay humble somehow, even though he can call Paul McCartney a friend and has performed for Presidents. He's got some great stories of life on the road, and I think I enjoyed his recollections of Scream the most, even though I knew little about the band. Something about the tireless effort they made, all the crap venues they played, the dirty floors they slept on - it seemed like a magical journey even though they never really made it. He speaks of that time very fondly and I'm sure he wouldn't change a thing.

If I have a criticism of the book, it's what has been left out. It was a bit light on Nirvana for my taste. I know Grohl wasn't in the band all that long, but I would love to have read a few more Cobain anecdotes or to discover what it was really like to record Nevermind, arguably the most important album of the 90s. He also barely mentions his first marriage, which I found a little odd. Maybe it's a wound he would rather not pick at, but I would like to hear his whole story, not just the happy memories.

All in all though, it's a pleasure to read. Grohl is a witty, spirited narrator and it's no mystery why he has managed to stay at the top for so long - his enthusiasm is infectious. The Storyteller is a fast-paced and entertaining perspective on what it takes to make it in the rock business, and what happens when those dreams come true.
Profile Image for Sara.
22 reviews7 followers
December 18, 2021
Dave Grohl seems like a very pleasant, well adjusted person. His book was disorganized, superficial and boring.

Kurt Cobain was mentioned as briefly as possible. Courtney Love is not mentioned at all. This probably to avoid lawsuits, but entire years are glossed over.

He writes at length about being a father, but writes nothing about his wife, not even meeting her. At times he seems like a single father doing it all on his own.

The book jumps back and forth through time, basically repeating, “to think this misfit kid from Virginia hit it big and met all his idols, who were amazing” over and over.

He was also corny, with metaphors that should be left on the cutting room floor.

Some of his stories are cute, but the book was not really for me. Sorry Dave.
Profile Image for Emily B.
424 reviews416 followers
February 16, 2022
Really fun and entertaining. It was joyful to read.

Yes the timeline is a bit all over the place but I wouldn't say this is a chronological autobiography. It's exactly as described, stories.
Profile Image for Maria Espadinha.
1,007 reviews354 followers
September 26, 2022
Dave Grohl — Uma Vida Plena de Histórias

Sonhou, Concretizou e conta-nos como foi…

“Fui abençoado com um gene sinfónico, à espera de atuar. Apenas foi preciso aquela faísca…”

“No entanto, acima de qualquer informação biológica, existe o amor. Algo que desafia toda a ciência e razão. E sou afortunado por tê-lo recebido. É talvez o fator mais decisivo na vida de alguém. É com certeza a grande musa de um artista. E não há amor como o amor de mãe. É a melhor canção da vida. Estamos todos em dívida para com as mulheres que nos trouxeram ao mundo. Pois, sem elas, não haveria música.”

“Por muito que quisesse pertencer e ser aceite no meu círculo de amigos, no meu íntimo sentia-me diferente. Só anos mais tarde encontraria a coragem para assumir a minha individualidade…”

The Storyteller é um livro especial, único.. onde cada página inspira…❤️🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟❤️
Profile Image for Christy.
3,760 reviews32k followers
March 3, 2022
4 stars
“Life is just too damn short to let someone else’s opinion steer the wheel,”

Dave Grohl is such a talented musician and I’ve always thought he seemed like a down to earth guy. Listening to his book was a lot of fun and hearing stories about his music career and family was awesome. Of course the fact that he narrates it makes it all the better. Definitely recommend for music lovers.
Audio book source: Libby
Story Rating: 4 stars
Narrators: Dave Grohl
Narration Rating: 5 stars
Genre: Memoir
Length: 10h 35m
Profile Image for Amanda.
146 reviews16 followers
January 6, 2022
Such a cool book. You feel like you’re sitting around a campfire and he’s telling stories what could be better. I’m not an audiobook person but he narrated this one so I may have to get the audio. I will forever love you Dave Grohl. Great way to start 2022.
Profile Image for Malia.
Author 6 books547 followers
December 2, 2021
Though I'm not a big Foo Fighters Fan, I do like Nirvana and I was intrigued by the book. I'd recommend going with the audiobook, because Grohl reads it himself, and he does so well. It really feels like he's telling you stories of his life. He personable, strange, funny and engaging, and though I imagine he can be a handful and a bit exhausting, too, I came away from the book with respect for him, his achievements and what he has learned in his life. He acknowledges mistakes and shortcomings as well as repeatedly expressing how fortunate he feels to have led the life he has led. Overall, an engaging read and one I'd recommend to fans of his, but also to anyone who love music and just enjoys a good story.

Find my book reviews and more at http://www.princessandpen.com
Profile Image for ivy.
399 reviews119 followers
October 7, 2021
Well, not sure how another rock memoir is going to top that one. Storyteller is right.
Humble, intelligent, insightful, engaging and sometimes a little emotional. So much to relate to in this.
Highly recommend for any music lover.
I was a “Nirvana’s drummer” Dave Grohl fan before but now I am definitely just a Dave Grohl “the person” fan.
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