The Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert is taking place on Saturday at Wembley Stadium in London. It’s the first of two massive concert events that will honor the late Foo Fighters drummer. His band mate and friend Dave Grohl got things started on Saturday.
“Ladies and gentlemen, tonight we have gathered to celebrate the life, the music, and the love of our dear friend, our band mate, our brother Taylor Hawkins, Grohl told the stadium crowd. “For those of you that knew him personally, you know that no one else could make you smile or laugh or dance or sing like he could. And for those of you that admired him from afar, I’m sure you’ve all felt the same thing.”
The evening’s lineup is massive. And everyone came to rock.
“So tonight, we’ve gathered with family and his closest friends, his musical heroes and greatest inspirations, to bring you a gigantic [expletive] night for a gigantic [expletive] person,” Grohl said. “So sing. And dance. And laugh; and cry and [expletive] scream and make some [expletive] noise so he can hear us right now. Cause you know what? It’s gonna be a long [expletive] night, right? Are you ready?”
The show kicked off with Liam Gallagher of Oasis performing “Live Forever” and “Rock N Roll Star.” Then Stevie Nicks joined via video message. It was about a session she had with Foo Fighters.
“We recorded a kickass version of ‘Gold Dust Woman’ live, and at the end of the song, I yelled out, ‘Best Gold Dust Woman ever!’ And I meant it!”
Stars Pay Tribute to Taylor Hawkins in London
The event also welcomed Wolfgang Van Halen early in the evening. Wolfgang joined an impromptu supergroup of Justin Hawkins, Grohl and Josh Freese. Grohl actually served as the bass player in this lineup, with Hawkins on vocals and Freese on drums. While Wolfgang has often said he’d never play Van Halen covers, this group did. They did versions of “On Fire” and “Hot for Teacher,” and Wolfgang shredded.
Dave Chappelle took the stage, and while he certainly had his usual sense of humor, he was earnest in reflecting on his memories of Taylor Hawkins.
“I’ve seen Taylor be a rock star many nights,” Chappelle recalled of spending time around Taylor Hawkins and his young son at a show at Madison Square Garden. “But it was my first time seeing him be a dad. And what a cool [expletive] dad. Taylor Hawkins was a legend of a man. He was a legend of a musician. And he was a legend of a father.”
A second Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert is set for September 27 at the Kia Forum in Los Angeles. This one will be available on Video on Demand beginning on September 5. Learn more about how to see it here.