Chris Shiflett performing with Foo Fighters
Chris Shiflett performing with Foo Fighters
Courtesy of Wikipedia

Foo Fighters Guitarist Chris Shiflett on New Solo Project

​Chris Shiflett has spent the past decade playing guitar with hard rock heroes the Foo Fighters and the world's coolest cover band, punk supergroup Me First and the Gimme Gimmes. The Santa Barbara native--who now lives in LA--has also busied himself writing and singing his own songs for an upcoming album he plans to title Chris Shiflett and the Dead Peasants

The way the Foo Fighter explains it, the record will definitely not sound like anything he's most famous for. Shiflett performs Wednesday (Feb. 17) at Alex's Bar in Long Beach. He will be accompanying himself on acoustic guitar and be joined on keyboards by Derek Silverman. Shiflett called--using a hands-free wireless--while driving to a recent solo gig in Seattle. 

OC Weekly (Wade Tatangelo) How's the recording of your solo album, Chris Shiflett and the Dead Peasants, going?

Chris Shiflett: We're in the final stages. Hopefully it will be ready soon. Just need to do a few more tweaks.

How does it compare to your work with Foo Fighters?

It's a totally different thing. It's mostly acoustic based and rootsy.

Fellow Foo Fighter Dave Grohl said recently that fatherhood has "changed everything." Do you have children?

I do. Three little boys. Your life changes dramatically, of course, when you have kids.

Has being a father affected your songwriting?

Not really, no.

What's it like going from playing the world's largest venues to clubs and bars?

It's a natural thing. I've been playing clubs since I was 14. Playing little bars is like being back home for me.

What are some of the prominent themes you see surfacing on your upcoming record?

I tend to write pretty autobiographically. So a lot of the songs are just about shit and stuff I've been going through.

So, what do you think of Grohl's other band, Them Crooked Vultures?

I went to go see them at the Wiltern and it was great--really loud--but it was good. 

Louder than a Foo Fighters show?

I wouldn't know. I'm never in the audience. 

Good point. What's next for Foo Fighters?

I don't have any idea. Make a new album? I couldn't tell you.

And how about your other band, Me First and the Gimme Gimmes. Future plans?

Yeah, we have started to talk about another record. But we haven't come with concept yet.

You've been with Foo Fighters for quite some time now, do you recall what it was like auditioning for them?

I was pretty nervous. I actually had to audition twice and then I got the gig. We left to tour right after.

What's more nerve-racking: Playing in front of 20,000 with Foo Fighters or fronting your own band at a cozy club gig?

Fronting my own band is much more nerve racking. With 20 people, you can see whites of their eyes and hear them talking while your strumming!

A Solo Acoustic Evening with Chris Shiflett of Foo Fighters with Audra Mae, Adam Bones, Alex's Bar, Long Beach, Wed., Feb. 17, 8 p.m., $10.


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