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  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

EDHS student jams with Foo Fighters

by Sylene Argent

Any teen who throws on a pair of headphones to listen to favourite albums fantasies about getting onstage with those music icons to jam. For 17-year-old Essex native, Lucas Gregetz, that fantasy has become a reality.

  On Wednesday, July 25, Gregetz and his dad, Steve, who is a teacher at Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Elementary School, headed to Ohio to see the Foo Fighters with the Struts at the Blossom Music Centre.

  The Essex District High School student was excited to take the road trip with his dad as the Foo Fighters is a favourite band of them both. “I’m a huge fan. I starting listening to Foo Fighters around three or four years ago. I have listened to every little extra B side,” Gregetz said.

  As a musician who has played the guitar for five years, and has performed locally with friends at venues like Tune Up the Parks, Gregetz wanted to do more than just enjoy the concert experience, he wanted to jam with his favourite musicians. Knowing front man Dave Grohl sometimes brings up a fan onstage who can play, Gregetz brought along a sign that read, “Let me jam Monkey Wrench, please.” He joked the sign was very Canadian with its politeness.

  Unbeknownst to Gregetz, his dad scored pit tickets to the show, and they arrived early enough so they were first in line, which got them a front row seat.

  The security guards were cool, Gregetz said, noting they let him hold his home-made sign against the railing so it wouldn’t block anyone’s view. That’s where the sign stayed most of the concert until Gregetz knew Monkey Wrench was coming up.

  “I held it up high then,” he said.

  Grohl brought Gregetz on stage and told him he better one-up a fan at a previous show, who played the song well, while decked out in Kiss makeup. “He had crushed the song,” he said.

  “I got pulled up on stage. The adrenaline kicked in. I was like Superman jumping up there,” Gregetz said.

  “That was pretty nice. It was just surreal when I was up there. I couldn’t feel my feet. I felt like I was in a dream,” Gregetz commented. As the music was so loud, he really couldn’t hear himself play, but, luckily, his muscle memory took over.

  “It was good. I remember some stuff [abut the performance] after I played. I wanted to go around to each band member and play with them to say ‘thanks,’ which I remembered.”

  Gregetz gave Grohl a hug before exiting the stage. He then returned to his spot to enjoy the rest of the show.

  “He gave me the song. That’s all I needed. He’s the nicest guy, too,” he said.

  Gregetz was happy with the way he played. “Monkey Wrench has always been my favourite song. In the middle, Dave does a solo. I knew he’d let me do a little solo there,” Gregetz said of why he chose to ask to jam during that song.

  Two weeks prior, Gregetz saw Foo Fighters in Toronto with his mom, Niki. He had brought the sign with him then, but he had gone unnoticed. So, the local rocker hadn’t practiced the song in two weeks. “I was playing on what I had practiced then and completely winged the solos, while not being able to hear myself while having 20,000 people scream at me.

  “I have been more nervous in from of 25 people than the 20,000 there,” Gregetz said of the experience.  “Because, once I got up there, the adrenaline hit. I just wanted to start playing. I brought my own pic.” His lucky pick is .73mm boring grey pick, which he had tucked away in his wallet so he would be ready to go.

  Since the big gig, Gregetz said, “Everyone has been like, ‘you did so amazing.’ I just really wanted to go up and jam. They like to play with other people. I wanted to go jam with them.”

  Gregetz is thankful to the Foo Fighters for the experience. “They didn’t have to do that, give up a song to someone.”

  Originally, his dad was going to get lawn seats to the Ohio show, but later decided he wanted to experience the band close up. He found a few tickets online, but had to buy two separate ones to get them. One was delivered, one was not. It was later found, but the incident caused a bit of worry to a night that ended up being one Gregetz will never forget.

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