Rock Breakdown with Sara: Taylor Hawkins Tribute Highlights
The death of Taylor Hawkins is still sending a ripple effect through the rock world. At WMMR, our friendship with the Foo Fighters runs deep, and we felt that loss like a tidal wave. Taylor was the sonic backbone of a band who have been part of the fabric of this station – indeed, of the genre – since the Foo Fighters blew up in 1995. We were ready to welcome them back to Philadelphia this summer for a stadium show, which was sure to be the biggest of the year… until we heard the news.
In the immediate aftermath, Dave Grohl was nowhere to be found, and understandably so. When he and the Foos finally emerged, it was with a grand plan for a massive 2-show tribute to their friend and bandmate. Dave doesn’t do things small, so of course the first show at Wembley Stadium in London was a revolving door of rock royalty. Only the best for Taylor.
On September 27th, they brought an equally stacked lineup to the Kia Forum in Los Angeles. The show was a manifestation of that ripple effect that Taylor’s absence set off six months ago. In life, he championed rock n’ roll. He embraced its spirit, and he respected the musicianship. He took the role of rock ambassador seriously – but he didn’t take himself seriously. Perhaps that’s what endeared him to so many fellow drummers. Despite his incredible talent, he wasn’t intimidating – he just loved music, and wanted to share the love.
And that’s exactly what we gathered to do at this gig. Taylor’s biggest influences, longtime friends, and musicians he inspired were all there. It was a pure and vibrant celebration of rock, which is really what his life was all about.
Unlike the Wembley concert, this one wasn’t streamed live. There was an elaborate camera setup, though, so Dave’s definitely got plans to make this available on demand. Until then, here are my highlights from the the second tribute concert for Taylor Hawkins.