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Frontman Dave Grohl described this to Billboard magazine as "A stomping Foo Fighters uptempo song, with a little bit of Chuck Berry in it."
Grohl revealed in an interview with the XFM Radio station that they put this song together in a day, while other tracks on the record took several weeks. In the same interview he alluded that the song referred to political unrest and people not getting what they're promised but would prefer people to have their own idea or interpretation.
When "The Pretender" achieved its 17th week at the top of the Modern Rock Tracks chart in December 2007 it became the longest-running chart-topper in the history of this tally until Muse's "Madness
" reigned for 19 weeks in 2012-13. The 3 songs it beat, each with 16-week runs at the top of the Modern Rock Tracks chart were: "Scar Tissue
," Red Hot Chili Peppers (1999) "It's Been Awhile
," Staind (2001) and "Boulevard Of Broken Dreams
," Green Day (2004.)
Foo Fighters performed this at the 2008 Grammy awards on a stage set up outside the main venue. The song won for Best Hard Rock Performance, and Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace won in the Best Rock Album category. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France)
Jim McCarty of The Yardbirds
The Yardbirds drummer explains how they created their sound and talks about working with their famous guitarists.
Did they really trade their guitarist to The Doobie Brothers? Are they named after something naughty? And what's up with the band name?
They Might Be Giants
Who writes a song about a name they found in a phone book? That's just one of the everyday things these guys find to sing about. Anything in their field of vision or general scope of knowledge is fair game. If you cross paths with them, so are you.
Don breaks down "Hotel California" and other songs he wrote as a member of the Eagles. Now we know where the "warm smell of colitas" came from.