Glee is quickly becoming the new Napster, in terms of its rivalries with various musical artists. First Slash from Guns ‘n’ Roses said he didn’t want his band’s songs on the show, then Kings of Leon seconded the motion, and now Foo Fighters are the latest band to hop on the “We Hate Glee” bandwagon.
Talking to the Hollywood Reporter at South by Southwest, Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl threw his support behind Kings of Leon in not wanting Glee to cover his songs. “It’s every band’s right, you shouldn’t have to do f***ing Glee,” Grohl said, adding “And then the guy who created Glee is so offended that we’re not, like, begging to be on his f***ing show… f*** that guy for thinking anybody and everybody should want to do Glee.”
Grohl’s points, while delightfully vulgar, aren’t wrong. Just because Glee is wildly popular doesn’t give the show carte blanche to cover any song it wants, and if a band doesn’t want to be associated with it, they shouldn’t get bullied by creator Ryan Murphy. That’s a lesson I learned by watching Glee.
Murphy was quite critical of both Slash and Kings of Leon when they said they didn’t want to be associated with Glee. A perfect summary of Murphy’s history with bands came from Grohl himself, who was explaining the situation to Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkiins:
“The Glee guy, what a f***ing jerk. Slash was the first one. He wanted to do Guns ‘n’ Roses and Slash is like, ‘I hate f***ing musicals. It’s worse than Grease.’ Then [Murphy’s] like, ‘Well, of course he’d say that, he’s a washed up ol’ rock star, that’s what they f***ing do.’ And then Kings of Leon say, ‘No, we don’t want to be on your show.’ And then he’s like, ‘Snotty little assholes…’ And it’s just like, Dude, maybe not everyone loves Glee. Me included.”
With that quote, Dave Grohl just became my new hero. He’s standing up for himself and fighting back against Murphy, who acts just like Sue Sylvester whenever a band criticizes his show, throwing sticks at them. It’s a painful and almost laughable irony that Murphy’s show is all about tolerance and standing up for yourself, but whenever anyone does that to him, he tries to beat them back down.
Part of the problem may come from us, the TV critics. We were so quick to praise Glee as the greatest thing since sliced bread when it premiered that it was impossible for Murphy not to get a huge ego. Then when the cast of Glee passed every other musical artist for most singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, it only made Glee seem even more messianic.
However, it’s still just a TV show, and musicians have the right to use their song however they see fit. Just because we’ll never hear “Everlong” on Glee doesn’t mean Ryan Murphy should talk trash about Dave Grohl. Murphy would be wise to remember that just because something is wildly popular doesn’t mean it’s good and doesn’t mean everybody has to love it. If you want proof, just look at Rebecca Black’s music video for “Friday” which has over 16 million hits on YouTube. Nobody thinks it deserves a Grammy.
So for now, I’m in total agreement with Dave Grohl about both Ryan Murphy and Glee. Not everyone has to like it, and I hope Grohl inspires more musical artists to refuse to let Glee cover their songs. If it means more original songs like the brilliant “Hell to the No,” then maybe a total musician boycott of Glee might be the best thing to ever happen to the show.
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(Image courtesy of FOX)
Photo AlbumPaleyFest 2011 Presents “Glee”