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STEVE INSKEEP, host:

We have been finishing 2009 by catching up on great music we didn't get a chance to tell you about this year. Our series Music We Missed ends with rock's newest super group. Three members of noted rock bands formed a group called Them Crooked Vultures.

(Soundbite of music)

INSKEEP: This story starts with a birthday party for Dave Grohl. He first became famous as the drummer for Nirvana. His party guests included John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin and also Josh Homme.

Mr. JOSH HOMME (Singing): (Singing) Gotta drive. I'm alone tonight.

INSKEEP: He's the singer from Queens of the Stone Age. At the party, the trio sat down in a castle.

INSKEEP: It was a Southern California restaurant called Medieval Times. It featured knights in armor and live jousting.

Mr. HOMME: We began to talk over dragon's-breath soup, which is what they were serving.

INSKEEP: That's guitarist Josh Homme who says that in that atmosphere, the three men talked over an idea that looked good on paper.

Mr. HOMME: It reads well. So, you know, after that initial meeting, we decided to test that paper chemistry, and we found that we had real chemistry.

Mr. JOHN PAUL JONES (Bassist): A chemistry set in fact.

INSKEEP: That's bassist John Paul Jones.

(Soundbite of music)

INSKEEP: Josh Homme says they tested that chemistry in a secret jam session.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. HOMME: The first one was sort of exploring the edges of our musicality together and trying to stump each other and realizing that wasn't very easy.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. HOMME: (Singing) You're on a long facelift.

INSKEEP: So they came back for a second day. In time, they wrote an album.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. HOMME (Singing) ...obstacle. All I want to do is undermine your reason. So begging and pleading stop all the teasing...

Mr. HOMME: I remember sitting there thinking I don't know if I like this and if this melody is good enough. And then also you have to be vulnerable in front of someone new that, you know, happened to be in Zeppelin.

INSKEEP: Them Crooked Vultures is a chance for two younger musicians to play with one of the bigger stars of the '70s.

Mr. JONES: You got this age thing, young children � they're not that young.

INSKEEP: And for one of the slightly younger guys, Dave Grohl, it was also a chance to return to his old instrument: the drums he played for Nirvana. For 15 years now, he's been singing and playing lead guitar with Foo Fighters.

Mr. DAVE GROHL: Playing drums is like dancing. People that think about their dancing aren't the greatest dancers in the world. And people that don't have to think about their drumming � they're some of the best drummers in the world. So I don't really have to, you know, worry about it. I just do it.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. HOMME: (Singing) Innocence has no resistance...

INSKEEP: And as they play, Them Crooked Vultures say they learn from each other.

Mr. HOMME: We're just sort of naturally pursuing this because it's - as you say on NPR all the time, it's rad.

(Soundbite of music)

INSKEEP: And that will have to stand as one of the final words of the decade on MORNING EDITION from NPR News.

I'm Steve Inskeep.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. HOMME: (Singing) Oh it's too late, I got hit by the closing door as I watched myself reflect on a...

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