When people in the business talk about a triple-threat entertainer, they're usually talking about an artist who sings, acts and dances. When defining a musician, you're probably talking about someone who sings, writes and plays an instrument.
There are more than a few of those, but how many can make the claim
to playing two different instruments in three different bands and enjoying extraordinary success with each one? That's a rare club, but Dave Grohl is in it. Paul Brannigan's illuminating This Is a Call
covers Grohl's popularity in Nirvana, in which he played drums; his colossal achievements with the Foo Fighters, where he was the singing frontman; and his high-profile work with Them Crooked Vultures as a drummer.
This is the first fully-fleshed look at the musician and is based on over 10 years of interviews with fellow musicians and producers, including Queens of the Stone Age singer Josh Homme
and Nirvana producer Butch Vig. Brannigan looks at a young Grohl finding his way as a musician and follows him as he becomes part of Nirvana, one of the most influential bands of the grunge movement. A large part of the book is dedicated to this period, and the author makes sense of the phenomenon.
This Is a Call is a well-written book, and if the section on the Foo Fighters themselves is a bit thin, the rest of the chapters make up for it.