The former Nirvana drummer, 53, took the stage at the U.K. festival on Saturday, June 25, during the Beatles icon’s headlining set. McCartney, 80, told the crowd that Grohl “flew in specially to do” the gig.
“I swear, I would never miss being right here with you, right now,” the Ohio native replied before the duo played “I Saw Her Standing There” and “Band on the Run.” Bruce Springsteen later appeared to sing “I Wanna Be Your Man” and his song “Glory Days.”
Grohl’s duets marked the first time he’s performed live since the Foo Fighters postponed their tour dates in the wake of Hawkins’ death. The Texas-born musician, who joined the rock group in 1997, passed away at age 50 in March.
“The Foo Fighters family is devastated by the tragic and untimely loss of our beloved Taylor Hawkins,” a statement from the band read at the time. “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.”
The songwriter is survived by wife Alison Hawkins and their three children: Oliver, Annabelle and Everleigh. Earlier this month, Taylor’s family broke their silence on the heartbreaking loss.
“My deepest thanks and admiration go out to the global Foo Fighters community and Taylor’s fans far and wide for the outpouring of love each and every one of you have shown our beloved Taylor,” Alison wrote in a lengthy note shared via social media on June 8. “Your kindness has been an invaluable comfort my family and me during this time of unimaginable grief.”
She continued, “As Taylor’s wife, and on behalf of our children, I want to share how much you meant to him and how dedicated he was to ‘knocking your socks off’ during every performance. Taylor was honored to be a part of the Foo Fighters and valued his dream role in the band every minute of his 25 years with them. We considered every band member and the extended Foo Fighters team our family.”
Alison assured fans that her late husband’s “endearing spirit and deep love of music will live on forever” through his impressive catalog. “In celebration of his life, it is now up to all of us who loved him most to honor Taylor’s legacy and the music he gave us,” she concluded. “Thank you all again for your love and sympathy. Taylor loved all of you & we love you too.”
Authorities found Taylor unresponsive in Bogotá, Colombia. While an investigation is still ongoing, a preliminary toxicology test allegedly uncovered the presence of marijuana, tricyclic antidepressants, benzodiazepines and opioids in his system.
Grohl and his bandmates — Nate Mendel, Chris Shiflett, Pat Smear and Rami Jaffee — have not issued individual statements regarding Taylor’s death. However, the group will celebrate his legacy with star-studded tribute concerts in London and Los Angeles this September. Alanis Morissette, Miley Cyrus, LeAnn Rimes, Joan Jett, Wolfgang Van Halen and more are set to participate.