Dave Grohl Gives Tearful Tribute to Foo Fighters’ Taylor Hawkins

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It was an emotional night. Dave Grohl broke down in tears while playing “Times Like These” with the remaining members of the Foo Fighters at the Taylor Hawkins’ Tribute concert on Saturday, September 3.

“It’s times like these you give and give again,” the Grammy winner, 53, tried to sing, with his voice breaking on the final two words. Grohl stopped singing for around 30 seconds, then wiped his tears from his face. He then shook his head at the microphone and regrouped before returning to singing. Josh Freese performed the drum solo that Hawkins had created, which he died in March.

Various drummers stepped in for the late musician during Foo Fighters’ songs. Travis Barker played during “Monkey Wrench” and “The Pretender” while Hawkins’ son Shane Hawkins, 16, (born Oliver Shane Hawkins) was behind the drum kit for “My Hero.” Rufus Taylor (son of Queen’s Roger Taylor) was drumming for “These Days” while viral 12-year-old Nandi Bushnell joined the band for “Learn to Fly.”

Taylor, who was 50 years old, died March 25, 2010. The Texas native was on tour with the band in Bogotá, Colombia, when he passed away. Taylor was reportedly suffering from chest pains shortly before his death. An ambulance was dispatched to Taylor’s hotel.

“The Foo Fighters family is devastated by the tragic and untimely loss of our beloved Taylor Hawkins,” the group wrote via a Twitter statement at the time. “His musical spirit and infectious laughter will live on with all of us forever. Our hearts go out to his wife, children and family, and we ask that their privacy be treated with the utmost respect in this unimaginably difficult time.”

Alison Hawkins, who was the drummer’s spouse and shared children Shane, Annabelle and Everleigh with him, released her first statement more than two months later.

Taylor Hawkins and Dave Grohl
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“As Taylor’s wife, and on behalf of our children, I want to share how much you meant to him and how dedicated he was to ‘knocking your socks off’ during every performance. Taylor was honored to be part of the Foo Fighters. He cherished every moment of his 25 year tenure with them. We considered every band member and the extended Foo Fighters team our family,” she wrote, in part, at the time. “Taylor’s endearing spirit and deep love of music will live on forever through the collaborations he so enjoyed having with other musicians and the catalog of songs he contributed to and created.”

After her statement, two tribute shows were announced with one one at London’s Wembley Stadium on Saturday and a second set for September in Los Angeles.

“Tonight we’ve gathered with family and his closest friends, his musical heroes and greatest inspirations to bring you a gigantic f–king night for a gigantic f–king person,” Grohl told the London audience on Saturday. “So, sing and dance and laugh and cry and f–king scream and make some f–king noise, so he can hear us right now. You know what? It’s gonna be a long f–king night. Are you ready?”

The first concert was truly star-studded, bringing in a staggering number of people. Paul McCartney, Liam Gallagher, Kesha, Metallica’s Lars Ulrich, AC/DC’s Brian JohnsonYou can find many more musical tributes to celebs. Dave ChapelleAnd Jason SudeikisAnecdotes shared between sets about Hawkins

“We sat down, and we said, ‘Even if it’s his closest friends, that’s, like, 100 f–king musicians,’ right?” Grohl explained to the sold-out stadium of planning the memorial shows. “Because Taylor loved to jam and record with anybody and everybody. He loved to play music every day, and there aren’t too many people he’s never jammed with. So, this collection of friends, family and musicians, this is all brought together by him, and we’re all connected here today by that one guy, bringing musicians that have never met, musicians that have never played together, all in one place at one time with all of you beautiful people, so make some f–king noise for Taylor Hawkins.”

Paramount made the Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert livestream available. The entire show can be viewed on YouTube. It is just over six hours in length.