Guns N’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan offered heartfelt insights into the new Foo Fighters drummer, Josh Freese, in a recent conversation with The Guardian. Amidst the conversation, he also shared poignant memories of the late Taylor Hawkins, painting a vivid picture of the camaraderie they shared.
McKagan, in his characteristically candid manner, reflected on the profound connection he shared with Taylor Hawkins, stating: “I was very close with Taylor, we were best buddies. There couldn’t have been a better guy than Josh. I just sat at the side of the stage and wept. Josh paid such service to Taylor.”
The passing of Taylor Hawkins in March of the previous year marked a significant loss for the music world. The drummer’s sudden departure, resulting from a tragic cardiovascular collapse, highlighted the fragility of life. His heart weighed double that of men his age, an indicator of the battles he had fought. In the wake of this profound loss, the Foo Fighters faced the challenging task of finding a new drummer. After more than a year of contemplation and deliberation, the band introduced Josh Freese as the replacement, a decision welcomed by both fans and fellow musicians alike.
Reflecting on his own journey and the trials he’s faced, McKagan contemplated the notion of being a survivor. He emphasized: “Absolutely. We’ve had so much loss from drugs that you end up feeling like you’re here for a reason, man.” For Duff McKagan, that reason transcends the stage and extends to his family life. He spoke of the profound impact of meeting his wife Susan and the joy of raising their children. McKagan’s second act, he believes, allows him to address critical issues like panic attacks, depression, and sobriety.
It’s worth noting that Josh Freese’s journey has been a diverse one. Beyond his current role as the drummer for Foo Fighters, Freese also lent his talents to Guns N’ Roses for three years, showcasing his remarkable versatility as a musician.
The legacy of Taylor Hawkins lives on not only in the hearts of those who knew him but also in the music that he created. Josh Freese’s presence in the Foo Fighters is not merely a substitution but a continuation of a musical legacy that Hawkins helped build. McKagan’s reflection serves as a poignant reminder of the profound connections and the enduring impact of music within the broader spectrum of life’s trials and tribulations. As the world of music continues to evolve, the stories of these legendary artists remind us of the indomitable spirit of the human experience.