‘The best songs happen that way’: Dave Grohl on his thunderous jam session with the Beatles’ Paul McCartney

For Dave Grohl, working with Paul McCartney was a throwback to the days before labels brought in multiple songwriters and producers to finish tracks, before singers went on TV to try to make it big.

The Foo Fighters frontman, in a new talk with KROQ, says “Cut Me Some Slack” — his celebrated recent collaboration with the former Beatle — was the result of an old-fashioned jam session.

The song was written and recorded, along side former Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic and touring guitarist Pat Smear, in just three hours, Grohl said.

[SOMETHING ELSE! REWIND: Paul McCartney's new song with the surviving members of Nirvana combined the manic danger of one with the randy rockabilly of the other.]

Some eight months later, they reconvened to perform the song during the 12-12-12 Sandy relief concert. An album commemorating the benefit is due next week, though “Cut Me Some Slack” is not included. The track, instead, is part of the soundtrack for a new Grohl documentary.

Sound City — Real to Reel also includes Grohl’s new song with Skipknot’s Corey Taylor, called “From Can To Can’t.” He has assembled a touring band that includes Stevie Nicks, John Fogerty and Rick Nielsen, among others.

Still, most of the attention has remained on his one-off studio effort with McCartney, which the group later performed during a pre-Christmas episode of Saturday Night Live.

“We walked in; we jammed the song. It just came out of nowhere. The best songs happen that way,” Grohl tells KROQ. “We recorded it live and put a vocal over it and that was it. It was three hours and it was perfect.”

For Grohl, whose film is about a former commercial recording studio that once produced signature rock albums like Rumours by Fleetwood Mac, After the Gold Rush Neil Young and Nevermind by Grohl’s old band Nirvana, it’s another example of how the old ways might still be the best ways.

“You have to understand, one of the great things about playing with Paul McCartney or playing with Neil Young is that that generation of musicians, they cherish and respect and value the practice of just going into a room and coming up with something and jamming and making it a song,” Grohl added. “There’s not like seven songwriters and seven producers and digital technology or whatever. It’s like people getting in a room.”

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