One year since his death, Foo Fighters have paid tribute to late friend and Mushroom Group founder Michael Gudinski during a recent Australian performance.
The concert took place last night (March 4) at GMBHA Stadium in Geelong, Victoria, just a few hours out of Melbourne. It marked the first time an international act has played a stadium show in the country since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The rock legends played a series of hits including ‘The Pretender’, ‘Times Like These’, ‘My Hero’, and more, finishing their set with a tribute to Gudinski, a leading Australian promoter and record executive who brought a host of international acts to the country during his career.
“I would like to dedicate this last song to an old friend, who’s not here with us tonight – a person that always brought us over here, took care of us and made us happy – a sweet man, who made everything fun Down Under,” frontman Dave Grohl said.
“Coincidentally, we managed to get down here about… Almost exactly a year since his passing. But we would not be the band that we are today, here in Australia, if it wasn’t for the great, late Michael Gudinski. I never understood one word that motherfucker said, man – I swear to god, I couldn’t tell what he was saying. But I do know that he was full of love. So let’s give it back to him.”
The band then performed their final song ‘Everlong’, complete with a fireworks display and an image of Gudinski projected onto the main screen. Drummer Taylor Hawkins also wore a Mushroom Group shirt throughout the show, and his bass drum bore a photo of Gudinski.
It was the band’s only Australian performance, but Grohl did reveal they plan on returning for a tour in November.
Opening acts for the show — which was part of a new music initiative, Always Live, that Gudinski had worked on prior to his death — included BandLab NME Award winners Amyl & The Sniffers and Melbourne punk band The Meanies.
Gudinski died in his sleep last March, at the age of 68. He founded Mushroom Group in 1972 at 20 years old, and went on to work closely with a number of big names, including Ed Sheeran, Queens Of The Stone Age, Kylie Minogue, Bruce Springsteen and more.
A state funeral was held in Melbourne for the influential figure, with recorded tributes from Springsteen, Elton John, Taylor Swift, Sam Smith, Eagles’ Joe Walsh, Garbage’s Shirley Manson, Foo Fighters’ Grohl, Billy Joel, Bryan Adams, Josh Homme and Rod Stewart, among others.