Foo Fighters Enlist Rick Astley for Ultimate Live ‘Rickrolling’ in Japan

Band brings out '80s crooner to perform updated 'Never Gonna Give You Up.'

August 21, 2017 2:50 pm
Foo Fighters, Rick Astley Rickroll Entire Festival Crowd in Japan
Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters performing at a festival in Portugal earlier this summer. (Andrew Benge/WireImage)

Being on the losing end of a vicious Rickrolling hurts. Just ask the Westboro Baptist Church. Or everyone in attendance at the 2008 Thanksgiving Day Macy’s Parade.

As RCLife informed you late last year, Rickrolling is one of the first, great internet memes to find global interest and is really pretty simple to pull off. Here’s a sample scenario: Let’s say I email RealClearLife editor Tom Anderson with the subject line “Urgent Request,” and tell him that I have a hot breaking news story that he needs to check out right away. I use all sorts of colorful language to drive home my point, and then I include a link at the end of my message. He clicks on it, and gets this:

While it’s not the world’s harshest burn, it is a relatively fun prank to pull off, and has helped the video garner 344 million–plus views. Astley, who turned 50 last year, released a new album, aptly titled 50, which hit No. 1 in the U.K. (but sadly, didn’t chart in the U.S.).

And now, a festival audience in Japan has received likely the greatest Rickrolling of all time.

Foo Fighters, a rock band known for having a great sense of humor—whether it be its hilarious music videos or its members’ ’70s cover band—once Rickrolled the Westboro Baptist Church, when the latter called for a boycott of its music.

So the band, which was performing at Summer Sonic Festival in Japan on Sunday, enlisted the help of the real Rick Astley to play a version of his famous pop song mashed up with Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” (Note: The video below includes language that might not be suitable for an office environment.)

To mark the occasion, Foo’s lead singer Dave Grohl tweeted out a good-natured selfie with Astley.

Foo Fighters’ latest album, Concrete and Gold, drops on Sept. 15 (we previously reported on its first single, “Run“).

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