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Dave Grohl covers Van Halen for 'The Hanukkah Sessions'


As it was told in the sacred texts: “David Lee Roth lights the menorah / So do James Caan, Kirk Douglas, and the late Dinah Shore-ah”. Blessed be ye who move forward. Amen.

Let’s get goofy. A man who has primed himself for maximum levels of acceptable celebrity goofiness is Dave Grohl, the most dad-like figure to ever sport matching arm-length tattoos of bird feathers. There’s nothing that Grohl won’t do for a good laugh, and the best example yet is ‘The Hanukkah Sessions’ that he and actual Jewish producer Greg Kurstin have embarked on for the second year in a row.

‘Hanukkah Sessions’ roll call! ‘Stay’ by Lisa Loeb? Right here. ‘Blitzkrieg Bop’ by the Ramones? Present. ‘Copacabana’ by Berry Manilow? In the building. After the absurdity that was the disco-tastic shuffle of ‘Copacabana’, where will our intrepid duo tread today to find the best in Semitic-related music? Why, in the most Jewish of all the late ’70s hard rock bands, enter Van Halen.

Just kidding: Kiss is the most Jewish late ’70s hard rock band. Either them or Blue Oyster Cult. Don’t ask me why, I don’t make the rules. I just give you the answers. But what I’m not kidding about is Grohl and Kurstin taking on Van Halen’s seminal hit and only US number one song, ‘Jump’.

Question: can Dave Grohl hit those wild high notes that were key to the David Lee Roth experience? Answer: not really, but neither can Roth anymore (he’s “retired” for a reason). Grohl sure can scream though, and technical proficiency isn’t necessary for ‘The Hanukkah Sessions’ anyway, even though Kurstin does continuously get to show off his multi-instrumental skills.

Really this is just the fulfilment of Grohl’s appreciation for hard rock. And his appreciation for Jews. Both are important in this series. Check out the pair’s take on ‘Jump’ down below.