Drummer Taylor Hawkins of the multi-Grammy Award-winning rock band Foo Fighters has died, his bandmates said in a statement Friday. He was 50 years old.
Part of one of the most influential and critically acclaimed alternative rock bands in the world, Hawkins were known for their onstage charisma and classic rock-inspired beats, which he said were influenced by legends. like Phil Collins and Queen’s Roger Taylor.
He had been playing with Foo Fighters since 1997, when he was hired by singer and former Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl, providing percussion on some of the band’s biggest hits, including “Learn to Fly” and “Best of You”. .
“The Foo Fighters family is devastated by the tragic and untimely loss of our beloved Taylor Hawkins,” the band said in a statement on Twitter.
“His musical spirit and contagious laughter will live with us all forever,” they added.
The statement did not reveal the cause of Hawkins’ death, news of which emerged the same day the band was scheduled to perform at the Estereo Picnic Festival in Bogotá, Colombia.
A source from the Colombian prosecutor’s office told AFP that Hawkins’ body was found in a hotel in eastern Bogotá.
The festival said in a statement that the show would not take place.
Hawkins’ death comes just days after the band performed to a sold-out crowd at the Lollapalooza festival in Buenos Aires, with the drummer taking center stage to sing a cover of Queen’s “Somebody to Love.”
Prior to joining Foo Fighters, Hawkins played drums for Canadian indie singer Alanis Morissette.
In an interview with 95.5 KLOS last year, Grohl described his first encounter with Hawkins and how he convinced him to join his band.
“I was like, ‘Wow, you’re either my twin, or my spirit animal, or my best friend!’ Within the first 10 seconds of meeting him,” he said.
“And, of course, I had seen him play drums and thought he was an amazing drummer,” he added.
“When I called him and said, ‘Hey, I’m looking for a drummer.’ He said, ‘You know I’m your guy.’ And I think it had more to do with our personal relationship than anything musical.”
Foo Fighters celebrated its 25th anniversary last year on a pandemic-delayed tour and recently produced “Studio 666,” a rock-and-roll horror flick.
Tributes poured in from the music world, with Black Sabbath frontman Ozzy Osbourne hailing him as “a great person and an incredible musician” and punk rocker Billy Idol describing the news as “tragic”.
Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello praised his “unstoppable rock power”.
“In complete disbelief at the Taylor Hawkins news,” the Nickelback rockers said in a statement on Twitter. “Our deepest condolences to his family, bandmates, crew, friends and all who have been touched by the music he created with @foofighters @Alanis and so many others.”
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