In April 2021 Dave Grohl released 'What Drives Us', a documentary described as "a testament to the musician’s life" featuring interviews by Grohl with several prominent recording artists, both old and new, describing their personal stories of life on the road as a musician.
To accompany the release Dave wanted to record a song that would " not only pay tribute to the people and music that influenced me to become a musician, but also to pay tribute to my long family history". The song he chose was 'Nausea', originally by LA punk pioneers X. Grohl had long suspected that he and X drummer DJ Bonebrake may have been related after his grandmother noticed his name in a flyer for an X show in the 1980s, Bonebrake being her maiden name, but it wasn't until 2007 it was confirmed that the two were cousins, part of a long family tree that could be traced back to the 1600s.
As Dave's daughter Violet was naturally also part of the same family tree he decided she would be the perfect person to emulate the original female vocalist of X, Exene Cervenka, on the proposed cover. Dave sent a link to the song to Violet along with the details of his impulse idea and hoped she would be interested. "I crossed my fingers and awaited her response." he recalled.
Later that evening Grohl the younger replied with an emphatic "Yes" and the giddy father quickly raced into his home studio to start work on the instrumentals of the song. Violet had been appearing at Foo Fighters live shows as a backing singer for a number of years at this point but it would be the first time the two had worked together in the studio. "It felt so meaningful to have the first song Violet and I record together be a tribute to our Bonebrake heritage."
As has always been the case with Dave and his "one man band" recordings work was completed extremely quickly, drums, guitar and bass all laid down within just half an hour. He then called on Violet to begin recording her vocals. The youngster was understandably nervous recording with her father but according to Dave she sang "with the power and confidence of a seasoned pro".
All that remained was for Dave to add his own vocal harmonies to the chorus and recording of the song was complete in just a couple of hours. "It was a moment that superseded anything musical. A life moment that I will cherish forever. A family moment." gushed the proud father.
The track was first released online in April 2021 and was also featured over the closing credits of 'What Drives Us'.