Exhausted (song)

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Exhausted Foo Fighters.jpg
Single by Foo Fighters
from the album Foo Fighters
B-side "Winnebago"
Released June 12, 1995 (1995-06-12)[1]
Format 12" vinyl[1]
Recorded October 1994
Length 5:43
Songwriter(s) Dave Grohl
  • Foo Fighters
  • Barrett Jones
Foo Fighters singles chronology
"This Is a Call"
"This Is a Call"

"Exhausted" is the first Foo Fighters release and the lead single from the debut album. It was only issued as a promotional single, pressed on black 12" vinyl.[1] The song is notable for being the first original Foo Fighters track released to the public, when it premiered January 8, 1995 on Eddie Vedder's Self-Pollution Radio broadcast.


"Exhausted" is a song that dates from Dave Grohl's time in Nirvana. Grohl would regularly write and demo songs by himself, some of which would be tried out by the band. Kurt Cobain liked the song and was keen to record a version of it, but ultimately shied away since he was uncomfortable replacing Grohl's lyrics with his own.

Grohl did record a version of the song while still a member of Nirvana, along with bassist Krist Novoselic. It was among a handful of songs that the two recorded while waiting for Cobain to arrive for the band's last ever studio session at Robert Lang Studios in Seattle in 1994.


"Exhausted" is a mid-tempo melancholic rock song in the key of D minor. The song is played with guitars tuned down to Drop-D, with the low E string (sounding as D) being picked to add to the droning sound. The song is notable for its use of open chords with excessive distortion and treble, giving the track a noise rock-inspired feel.

The intro, verses and outro use a chord progression in D minor. A short pre-chorus consisting of three chords completes each verse, which either returns to the verse progression or alternately an aggressive power chord guitar line.

Live performances[edit]

The song was a fixture during the band's early tours. It was often used to close the set, allowing the band to draw it out and play with the distortion and feedback.

The song has also been played at least once in acoustic format. It was part of the full-band unplugged webcast performed for AT&T in 2000 where Dave Grohl introduced it as "the long, obscure album track, kind of a sleeper".


The cover artwork was created by Tim Gabor, who was also credited for the design and art direction of the debut album. The front image was eventually used again for a promotional CD single of "For All the Cows". All photos displayed on the back cover would later appear slightly rearranged in the liner notes of the debut album.

Track listing[edit]

US 12" vinyl[1]
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Exhausted" Dave Grohl 5:43
2. "Winnebago" Grohl, Geoff Turner 4:11

The B-side, "Winnebago", originally appeared on the Late! album Pocketwatch in 1992. The re-recorded version presented here would be excluded from the final album (except on the Australian bonus disc), but made two more b-side appearances on "This Is a Call", and the US maxi single version of "Big Me".


  1. ^ a b c d e f Foo Fighters - Exhausted discogs.com. Retrieved October 24, 2013.
  2. ^ Foo Fighters - Exhausted eil.com. Retrieved 24 October, 2013.