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Chris Shiflett on Boxing, Being Starstruck, Message Board Fights


Chris Shiflett on Boxing, Being Starstruck, Message Board Fights

Ahead of the release of his third solo album, West Coast Town, on Friday, April 14th, we caught up with Foo Fighters guitarist Chris Shiflett for his list of lasts, including stories of meeting his heroes, asking for autographs and talking politics.

The last time I read a comments board
Oh man, that's been a long time. I learned my lesson long ago to never, ever, ever look at the comments board. I remember when the Foo Fighters website had a discussion board on it, and this was way back in the Bush years, and I would post political stuff, I'm pretty left wing. And people would tear me apart on there. And then I would argue with them back, and finally I realised, why am I arguing with an anonymous 12-year-old who's a Bush supporter? What possible good is this doing for me or the world? I need to just let this go.

The last time I was in a boxing match
It's been a long time. But I spar pretty regularly. I'm way too old to actually be in a fight. I was late to boxing. In America I think the cut off age for the amateurs is 34-years-old, and I only started doing amateur fights when I was 32, maybe a little younger. And I loved it, but I just got my ass kicked every time because you're going up against 18- and 19-year-old kids. It's not a hobby to a lot of those kids, it's guys actually trying to fight for their future.

The last time I wanted something I couldn't have
About a month ago, I was following this incredible, beautiful, "non-reverse" Gibson Firebird on And I was all ready to make a bid on it and it sold and I was so heartbroken. I really wanted it.

The last thing I do before going onstage
I go to the bathroom. I have a nervous bladder, I swear to God. I hit the men's room like five times in the last three minutes before we go onstage, cos it's my great fear that I'll be onstage and have to go to the bathroom. Go figure.

The last time I used hairspray
Oh man, it's been a long time, but goddamn when I was in high school I was no stranger to the Aqua Net Super Hold.

The last time I felt out of my depth
I feel that way often when I talk politics with people. Because although I read a lot and feel pretty tuned in to current events, I find it much more difficult to remember all the trivial details about policy when you're in a heated argument with somebody about why their candidate sucks and yours is the good one.

The last time I forgot how to play a song
We were rehearsing for a Foo Fighters thing a while ago, and I hadn't played a few of those songs in a while, and it was just long enough to where I couldn't actually remember what I did. You know it's bad when you go back and listen to the record and still can't figure it out. "These Days" stumped me pretty hard. Dave [Grohl] had to turn and show me what his fingers were doing and I was, "Right, got it!" And "Congregation" from the last record, that killed me too.

The last time I was starstruck
A couple of years ago [X frontman] John Doe invited me to go and see X play in Orange County. And me and my wife went, and I just couldn't relax around him. And he's such a nice guy and so cool, and I was so uptight. We went backstage to say hello and I just know I acted so weird. And we left the room and my wife was like, "Why are you talking like that? Why can't you be yourself? What are you doing?"

The last body part I signed
Usually when you are signing somebody's body it's a sweaty boy with a Nirvana T-shirt on. [Laughs] Every now and again someone will come up and have you sign their arm or chest or leg and then they run out and get that tattooed on them. I've seen that a few times. It's tough, cos in your head you're thinking, "That's gonna take a few treatments to get that one lasered off there, kid", but you can't say that to someone's face. You have to say, "Hey! Good job, nice work!"

The last time I broke the law
I probably break the law every day speeding. As a matter of fact there was a point a few years ago where I had gotten so many speeding tickets that I got a warning letter saying that one more and it was going to be bye-bye to my licence. And the really ridiculous part of that is I drive a mini-van, so it's not like I'm driving around town in my Ferrari.

The last time I asked someone for their autograph
I ask my bandmates for their autographs fairly regularly, to sign guitars to donate to my kids' school fundraisers.

From issue #786 (May 2017), available now.


Topics: Chris Shiflett   Foo Fighters


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