The Foo Fighters have named veteran musician Josh Freese as their new drummer following the death of their former percussionist Taylor Hawkins.
Freese is an established musician who’s been in the industry for over 30 years now. He’s toured with Weezer, Sting, Paramore, Nine Inch Nails, Guns N’ Roses, and more, as well as being a member of Devo since 1996 and the Vandals since 1989.
The news was announced during a livestream titled “Foo Fighters: Preparing Music for Concerts,” which was advertised to deliver a “few surprises.”
Recorded from their studio, the livestream opened with the band teasing that they would reveal the identity of their new drummer, but first, they called in a few other famous faces to make cameos.
Chad Smith, the drummer of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, barged in making a comical entrance only to complain that someone was blocking his car. Tommy Lee from Motley Crew made a surprise food delivery, while Danny Carey of Tool showed up with a pair of poodles.
In the middle of the show, a voice interrupted in the distance; “Excuse me! Could we just, like, play a song?” with the camera cutting to Freese, who had been waiting off-camera behind a drum kit.
Overall, the livestream featured an eight-song set which included new songs from Foo Fighters’ upcoming 11th album, “But Here We Are.”
The announcement comes after the bands January announcement where they stated that they would remain together after the unexpected death of Taylor Hawkins, who died at the age of 50 last year when the band was in Colombia touring.
In a statement at the time, the band said: “Without Taylor, we never would have become the band that we were, and without Taylor, we know that we’re going to be a different band going forward.”
The band also announced that the band’s first show with Freese as their drummer will take place in New Hampshire on May 24th, which will also mark the opening leg of a global tour that will go into the later half of this year.
Besides the two memorial concerts the bands held for Hawkins last September, which included a lineup of musicians such as Paul McCartney, Queen, and Mark Ronson, this tour will be the first time the band has toured/performed live together since Hawkin’s death.
Freese also performed with the band at the two tribute concerts, when he also took to Instagram to make a statement about the honor of playing in Hawkin’s spot.
“I was asked what drums I’d like to use, without hesitation I said, ‘Taylor’s drums need to be up there and I want to play on his exact set-up.”
Eric Mastrota is a Contributing Editor at The National Digest based in New York. A graduate of SUNY New Paltz, he reports on world news, culture, and lifestyle. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.