Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl says one of the best-known songs from his previous band has a surprising similarity to a very unlikely tune. 

Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirt,” he told Rolling Stone, has a lot in common with Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up.” 

He had the epiphany when Foo Fighters were working on a cover of “Never Gonna Give You Up” for a 2017 festival in Japan where Astley was also on the bill.  

“We started kind of learning it true to the original,” Grohl told the magazine, adding:

“And then I start to realize that the arrangement is exactly the same as ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit.’ The chord progression has an uncanny resemblance. It’s true. There’s a riff and then the drums kick in, and then there’s a verse… there’s a lot. I’m like, ‘Oh my God.’ So we start joking around playing it in that same style, and it was so funny that we did it ten times in a row.” 

When the Foos took the stage, Astley was standing nearby ― and on the shortest notice possible, he agreed to join the band for their “Smells Like Teen Spirit”-flavored version of “Never Gonna Give You Up,” essentially rickrolling the entire festival: 

Grohl is about to become a two-time member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: He was inducted with Nirvana in 2014, and will enter again with Foo Fighters on Oct. 30.

He spoke to Rolling Stone for a cover story ahead of the release of his memoir, “The Storyteller,” which hits shelves next week. 



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