The Red Hot Chili Peppers paid their respects to the late Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins at Jazz Fest in New Orleans on Sunday, while frontman Dave Grohl, Hawkins’ widow Alison, and other Foo Fighters members were watching from backstage, according to reports in nola. .com and on social networks.
Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, a close friend of Hawkins, had written “Taylor” on his bass drum, surrounded by a hawk figure, similar to the one on Hawkins’ arm.
The Foo Fighters were originally scheduled to headline Jazz Fest, but canceled all tour dates following Hawkins’ March 25 death. Grohl’s presence in town this weekend sparked unfounded rumors that he might be performing. It didn’t happen, but towards the end of the band’s 90-minute set, Smith walked upstage, picked up the mic and said, “We love the Foo Fighters and we love our brother Taylor Hawkins. It means a lot to us to be able to play for them.
He then led the crowd in a chant of “We love you, Taylor!”
During the set just before the Peppers, Ivan Neville’s band Dumpstaphunk played the Foo Fighters hit “Best of You” as a tribute.
Grohl was also at the city’s Preservation Hall on Saturday for the “Midnight Preserves” late-night show, during which The Who’s Pete Townshend performed several songs.
Several days before the performance, the Peppers called their set a celebration of Hawkins’ life. Smith posted a touching video tribute of their time together days after Hawkins’ death.
“We’re taking Alison, his wife, with us and it’s going to be a party,” Smith told Billboard. “That’s what she wants. She doesn’t want it to be anything other than, “Let’s celebrate the music, let’s celebrate our friends, let’s celebrate Taylor.” That’s what he would want and he would be very happy for you to play and he would want it to be just a positive experience. So we are going to do all of this and she will be part of it and I am very honored that we can do this with her. … We’re going to play our hearts out.
Hawkins’ cause of death has not been officially determined, although medical officials in Colombia, where he died before the band performed at a festival, said there were several drugs in his system at the time of his death.