While 1999’s There Is Nothing Left To Lose (which features ‘Learn To Fly’) was ex-Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl’s 3rd release under the Foo Fighters moniker, it was the first to include musicians who would become permanent band members and appear on all future recordings.
The album was recorded as a trio in Grohl’s basement, with Nate Mendel on bass and Taylor Hawkins handling drumming duties. There Is Nothing Left To Lose received positive reviews from the music press, with many critics stating that it was more consistent than 1997’s The Colour And The Shape.
‘Learn To Fly’ proved to be the band’s breakthrough single, giving them their first number 1 on the Billboard Modern Rocks chart and their first appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 and remains a firm favourite among fans – particularly those in Cesena, Italy, who made a video of 1000 people playing the song in unison:
On to the transcription: the general theme here, as you’d expect from a mainstream pop/rock song at the end of the 1990s, is for the bass to play root notes in constant quavers without too much variation – this makes the song an ideal candidate for those who are new to the instrument and/or new to reading standard notation. ‘Learn To Fly’ provides a good exercise in reading simple rhythms, key signatures, in-bar accidentals and following chart ‘geography’.