The rock band announced Hawkins’ death on Twitter Friday. No cause of death was provided.
“The Foo Fighters family is devastated by the tragic and untimely loss of our Taylor Hawkins,” read the band’s statement. “His musical spirit and infectious laughter will live on with all of us forever. Our hearts go out to his wife, children and family, and we ask that their privacy be treated with the utmost respect in this unimaginably difficult time.”
A representative for Hawkins told USA TODAY Friday that no further details are currently available.
Hawkins joined Foo Fighters in 1997, taking over for original drummer William Goldsmith. On Friday, the band was scheduled to play at the Festival Estéreo Picnic in Bogotá, Colombia. Their next show was scheduled for Lollapalooza Brasil in São Paulo, Brazil on Sunday, and they were also set to play at the Grammy Awards on April 3.
In October 2021, Hawkins was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame alongside his fellow Foo Fighters. The drummer used his speech to spotlight other musicians who he felt also deserved the honor, like George Michael and the bands Jane’s Addiction and Soundgarden.
“So I’ll share this with you guys, but when you guys get it, you’ve got to give me back your bit,” he said.
Recently, Hawkins appeared alongside his fellow Foo Fighters — frontman Dave Grohl, bassist Nate Mendel, guitarist Pat Smear, lead guitarist Chris Shiflett and keyboardist Rami Jaffee — in the horror-comedy film “Studio 666,” which came out in February.
Born Oliver Taylor Hawkins in Fort Worth, Texas in 1972, Hawkins was raised in Laguna Beach, California. He played in the small Southern California band Sylvia before landing his first major gig as a drummer for Canadian singer Sass Jordan. He then spent the mid-1990s as the touring drummer for Alanis Morissette before Grohl asked him to join the Foo Fighters.
It’s the second time Grohl has experienced the death of a close bandmate: Grohl was the drummer for Nirvana when Kurt Cobain died in 1994.
Hawkins is survived by his wife Alison and their three children.
Musicians mourned Hawkins’ death on Twitter following the announcement.
“In utter disbelief at the news of Taylor Hawkins,” wrote the band Nickelback. “Our deepest condolences to his family, his bandmates, his team, his friends and everyone that was ever touched by the music he created.”
Ozzy Osbourne described Hawkins as “truly a great person and an amazing musician.”
“My heart, my love and my condolences go out to his wife, his children, his family, his band and his fans,” he continued. “See you on the other side”
FINNEAS wrote that he’s “so heartbroken to hear about Taylor Hawkins’ passing.”
“What an incredible talent, who didn’t also need to be so kind and generous and cool but was all those things too anyway,” he continued. “The world was so lucky to have his gifts for the time that it did, Rest In Peace.”
Queen guitarist Brian May expressed his shock about the loss of his recent collaborator: “No. It cannot be…” Hawkins played drums on the song “Cyborg,” which will be on the remastered version of May’s “Another World” album next month.
Paul Stanley of the band Kiss wrote that he was “speechless and gutted.”
“Taylor was a great guy, a dad and a husband,” he added. “My heart goes out to them, Dave and the band. What awful news.”
Beatles drummer Ringo Starr sent “peace and love” to Hawkins’ family and the rest of the Foo Fighters.
Mickey Guyton wrote that she’s “completely heartbroken” and “sending love” to the Foo Fighters.
“In absolute shock & disbelief over the the passing of Taylor Hawkins,” wrote Dream Theater co-founder Mike Portnoy, posting photos of himself with Hawkins. “I’ve always had so much admiration for him. Amazing drummer & a gem of a guy who was always fun to be around. I’m absolutely gutted…my deepest condolences to his bandmates & family”
Christian Coma, of the band Black Veil Brides, wrote that he was “so bummed” at the news.
“Was the nicest guy when I met him, and he was such an influential drummer,” Coma added. “My heart goes out to his family, the Foo Fighters, and everyone affected by the loss of a legend.”
Contributing: Andrew Dalton, Associated Press