Foo Fighters Sonic Highways

Watch Foo Fighters Sonic Highways

  • TV-MA
  • 2014
  • 1 Season
  • 8.7  (3,750)

Foo Fighters Sonic Highways is a musical documentary series that premiered on HBO in 2014. It chronicles the journey of the band, led by rockstar Dave Grohl, as they embark on an ambitious project to record their eighth album, Sonic Highways. But instead of recording the album in one city, they decide to record each song in a different city in the United States.

The show's format is largely driven by a formula Grohl and the producers have hit upon: each episode takes place in a different city, and explores its unique history and culture, as told through the lens of its music scene. In order to do this, the band members research the city's musical roots, interview local musicians and music industry insiders, and even visit iconic recording studios and other landmarks to help them understand the city's musical legacy.

The series is not only visually stunning but also deeply moving, as the band explores the connection between music and the human experience. The musicians they talk to share their personal stories, some of which are quite moving, and underscore the role music has played in their lives. The overall effect of the series is to paint a vivid portrait of a country with a rich and diverse musical heritage.

Each episode focuses on one city, and features interviews with musicians and other noteworthy figures from the city's musical past and present. Grohl's interviewees include legends like Dolly Parton, Joe Walsh, and Ian Mackaye, as well as up-and-coming artists like Zack Brown and Ben Gibbard. Each episode culminates with the band performing a new song that they have written and recorded in that city.

As a viewer, it's fascinating to hear how the music scene in each city has been shaped by its unique cultural, political, and socioeconomic factors. For example, in the first episode, which is set in Chicago, Grohl discusses the impact of urban segregation on the city's music scene, and how the blues, jazz, and house music that emerged from those segregated neighborhoods helped define Chicago's cultural identity.

The episodes are also notable for the way they delve into the technical aspects of music production. Grohl, who is a producer in his own right, takes us through the recording process and explains how he and the band choose the equipment, techniques, and studio settings that will best capture the essence of each city's sound. This aspect of the show will be highly interesting to anyone interested in music production or the history of recorded music.

Ultimately, Foo Fighters Sonic Highways is a love letter to American music, and to all the musicians, producers, and other creative forces that have shaped it over the years. The show's focus on the human stories behind the music, and the way it celebrates the cultural diversity of America, make it much more than just another documentary about rock and roll. Whether you're a die-hard Foo Fighters fan or just a lover of music in general, this series is sure to entertain and inspire. You may even discover some new artists who become lifelong favorites.

Foo Fighters Sonic Highways is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (8 episodes). The series first aired on October 17, 2014.

Foo Fighters Sonic Highways
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New York
8. New York
December 5, 2014
On the final stop of his multi-city journey, Dave Grohl explores the melting-pot influences that have contributed to the evolution of the NYC music scene over the years.
7. Seattle
November 28, 2014
Dave Grohl explores the influences of Seattle's rich musical heritage.
New Orleans
6. New Orleans
November 21, 2014
Dave Grohl chats with Dr. John, Allen Toussaint, Cyril Neville and Trombone Shorty about New Orleans' unique history, 'jazz funerals,' Mardi Gras Indians, and the effects of Hurricane Katrina. Meanwhile, Dave bonds with Ben Jaffe, scion of a famous jazz family and leader of the legendary Preservation Hall Jazz Band, before recording the latest Foo Fighters song at the venue.
Los Angeles
5. Los Angeles
November 14, 2014
Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl and Pat Smear visit legendary KROQ DJ Rodney Bingenheimer. Dave and the Foos then head to the desert to record with Eagles guitarist Joe Walsh at Rancho de la Luna, an iconoclastic studio in Joshua Tree, where co-founder David Catching and Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme reminisce about the 1990s Palm Desert underground.
4. Austin
November 7, 2014
As Foo Fighters prepare to record at the historic Austin City Limits Studio, Dave Grohl chats with Terry Lickona, executive producer of "Austin City Limits," the TV series that has featured performances from Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Beck, Radiohead and Grohl himself (in both Foo Fighters and Them Crooked Vultures) over the course of 40 years.
3. Nashville
October 31, 2014
The band heads to Nashville, Tenn. Dave sits down with Dolly Parton, Tony Joe White, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris and producer Tony Bown to discuss Nashville's musical influences. Foo Fighters prepare to record at Southern Ground studio.
Washington, D.C.
2. Washington, D.C.
October 24, 2014
A transient town where few are born and raised, Washington, D.C. is in many ways a city of extremes. Starland Vocal Band, Marvin Gaye, Duke Ellington, Nils Lofgren, Chuck Brown, Henry Rollins, Fugazi and Trouble Funk all hail from D.C. In the early '70s, the music style go-go originated here, and has remained a local craze ever since. Dave Grohl sits down with Trouble Funk's Big Tony Fisher to talk about go-go, and explores its origins with Chuck Brown, the genre's undisputed godfather. He also chats with Don Zientara, owner of Inner Ear Studio, which the Virginia-raised Grohl says "produced the entire soundtrack of my youth," as well as with members of the punk band Bad Brains and Ian MacKaye of Teen Idles, Minor Threat and Fugazi, who all recorded at Inner Ear over the decades.
1. Chicago
October 17, 2014
Chicago has been a mecca for such diverse acts as Cheap Trick, Etta James, Smashing Pumpkins, Herbie Hancock, Chicago and Kanye West. This episode chronicles the city's musical evolution from the blues of Buddy Guy and Muddy Waters in the '50s and '60s, to the quintessentially midwestern rock of Cheap Trick in the '70s and the punk rock of the '80s, as exemplified by Naked Raygun. At Electrical Audio studios, Dave Grohl and Foo Fighters connect with owner Steve Albini, a Chicago musical icon as a founding member of Big Black and Shellac, who produced and recorded Nirvana's third album, "In Utero." Later, they're joined by Cheap Trick's Rick Nielsen to record "Something from Nothing," the first song on Foo Fighters' new album.
Where to Watch Foo Fighters Sonic Highways
Foo Fighters Sonic Highways is available for streaming on the HBO website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Foo Fighters Sonic Highways on demand at Apple TV.
  • Premiere Date
    October 17, 2014
  • IMDB Rating
    8.7  (3,750)