Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins died at age 50, band says

Taylor Hawkins, the longtime drummer for rock band Foo Fighters, has died, the band announced late Friday.

Hawkins was 50 years old. No cause of death was given by the group, who posted a brief statement to social media.

“The Foo Fighters family is devastated by the tragic and untimely loss of our beloved Taylor Hawkins,” the statement reads.

“His musical spirit and infectious laughter will live on with all of us forever.”

Foo Fighters were due to perform at the Estereo Picnic music festival in Bogota, Colombia on Friday. The festival issued a statement in Spanish saying the band’s performance and the rest of its South American tour was cancelled “due to a very serious medical condition.”

Hawkins joined the Dave Grohl-led group in 1997 after original drummer William Goldsmith left, making him one of the longest-serving members of the 28-year-old band.

He played on every one of Foo Fighters’ eight albums since then, providing vocals and other instruments in addition to drums as well as co-writing some songs.

He also starred along with the rest of the band in their recently released horror-comedy film, “Studio 666.”

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 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.

–With files from the Associated Press

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