Red Hot Chili Peppers pay tribute to Taylor Hawkins at festival as Dave Grohl watches

The Red Hot Chili Peppers paid tribute to late Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins during their headline set at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival Sunday (1 May) night.

The Chili Peppers had stepped in with a few weeks’ notice to replace Foo Fighters at the festival following Hawkins’ death on 25 March. Foo Fighters, who were on tour at the time, subsequently cancelled their future concerts for 2022.

Hawkins was declared dead aged 50 at a hotel in Colombia after paramedics tried to revive him following “chest pain”.

The band’s drummer Chad Smith, a close friend of Hawkins’, played with the name “Taylor” spelt on his bass drum, and led a speech for the musician, his family and bandmates, who were in attendance, at the end of their set.

“We just found out about this two weeks ago, because Foo Fighters were supposed to play here tonight,” Smith said in footage from the event posted on Instagram.

“We love Foo Fighters, and we love our brother Taylor Hawkins. This means a lot to us to be able to play for them.”

He continued: “The guys in the band are here, they’re supporting. Taylor’s wife Alison and his whole family are here, we love them, we love Taylor.” Smith then encouraged the crowd to chant: “We love Taylor!”

The Chili Peppers previously paid tribute to Hawkins in the week following his death after being presented with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“I have to give a shout out to my brother Taylor Hawkins, who I love and we will all miss so much,” he said at the Los Angeles event.

“He would laugh and make a nice smart a** comment about this whole thing, and I love him,” Smith joked.

Foo Fighters were on tour in South America preparing to perform at a Colombian festival when Hawkins complained of chest pains.

While a cause of death has yet to be made public, a toxicology report revealed 10 different substances in his system at the time of death.