dave grohl steps in for teen metal band following noise complaints

After a band of British teenagers battled with their local government, the former Nirvana drummer penned a moving letter to the council explaining why their right to rock is important for fostering creativity and self expression.

by Emily Manning
24 March 2016, 3:55pm

Last year, Dave Grohl unearthed an adorable fan letter his 14-year-old self wrote to punk icon Ian MacKaye, asking the former Minor Threat frontman for "numbers of people to get in touch with" to set his fledgling career on the right track. Today, Grohl has done right by his teen spirit; he went to bat for a burgeoning metal band who — after a number of noise complaints — were all but banned by their town from practicing at all.

As local paper The Plymouth Herald reports, the British teen metal band, Black Leaves of Envy, were accused of making too much noise during their practice sessions in a family garage. Though the band says they only have one immediate neighbor who has not complained, the Cornwall Council served the teens a notice to keep their sound between 30 and 40 decibels — the equivalent to, as one Twitter user put it, "the sound output from my computer fans, lol." For a metal band, that's pretty much impossible. Black Leaves of Envy appealed to Grohl for his support, and the Foo Fighters frontman delivered a heartfelt open letter to the Council.

"Like many musicians, I started in a garage in my neighborhood. Together with friends, my adolescent years were made better by playing music with others," Grohl writes. "Music is not only a healthy pastime, it is a wonderful, creative outlet for kids, and fosters a sense of community necessary to the emotional and social development of any child." In the past, Grohl has spoken about Nirvana's formative years spent honing their explosive sound in garages across the Pacific Northwest before becoming one of the world's most influential bands. "I believe that it is crucial that children have a place to explore their creativity and establish a sense of self through song. The preservation of such is paramount to the future of art and music."

Grohl also included tips for better soundproofing amateur practice spaces, noting that garages and basements are often the only place for driven musicians who lack professional resources. Grohl concluded his letter with an appeal to foster future generations of creative thinkers. "For the sake of your local band Black Leaves of Envy and for the generations of young musicians that they may eventually inspire, I ask that you reconsider the restrictions put upon their private rehearsal space," Grohl wrote. "I believe that in doing so, you'll be sending a message that Cornwall is not only a home to music and the arts, but a place that encourages children to follow their dreams in a world where anything is possible."


Text Emily Manning
Image via Flickr Creative Commons

Dave Grohl
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