There’s no voice quite like Geddy Lee‘s. And even though Foo Fighters‘ Dave Grohl and Taylor Hawkins helped to induct Rush into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, they occasionally think better about tackling Lee’s vocals when covering Rush in concert. As has occurred on several occasions in the past, Foo Fighters have welcomed either special guest vocalists or pulled someone up from the crowd to handle vocals. The latter happened again during Foo Fighters’ stop in Champaign, Ill., inviting a fan named Mike Carpenter onstage to tackle the song.
As the band started to noodle a bit of “Tom Sawyer” onstage, Grohl made the offer to the audience to sing before spotting Carpenter in the crowd. “If it’s gonna happen, it’s gonna happen now,” warned Grohl. Carpenter walked onstage full of confidence, shaking hands with Pat Smear and then being greeted by Grohl, who stated, “You look like you know a Rush song.”
Carpenter definitely got into the theatrics of the moment, doffing his coat not long into the track, swinging his arms to the drum beat, raising his arms to the crowd, headbanging and air guitaring alongside Grohl and for the most part doing a very capable job, even going falsetto for some of Lee’s high notes. The fan engaged his fellow audience member in a sing-along in parts, but he did get tripped up on the words at one point, offering a “sorry” before jumping back in unfazed, but later missing another part.
As for Carpenter’s Foo Fighters backing band, Rami Jaffe did a masterful job on keys, with Hawkins replicating Neil Peart’s drums and the remainder of the band rocking out the song with aplomb. Carpenter finished off the song with a giant wail, getting a hug from Grohl and the rock god addressing what he just saw with a “Holy shit!” When Carpenter roused cheers again from the crowd, Grohl laughingly stated, “Get the fuck off my stage motherfucker.” Watch it all play out in the fan-shot video above.
Foo Fighters are currently in the midst of a North American tour, with dates booked into mid-December as well as a New Year’s Eve show in Las Vegas. See their remaining 2017 dates as well as 2018’s schedule here. And remember, you can catch the PBS special Foo Fighters Live at the Acropolis as part of the Landmarks Live in Concert series tomorrow night (Nov. 10). Watch a preview teaser here and check your local listings for air times in your area.
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