The Foo Fighters are gearing up for an eventful touring season, marking their first without drummer Taylor Hawkins, who tragically passed away in Colombia last year. Their tour is set to commence with a performance in New Hampshire in the upcoming week.
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To fill the void left by Hawkins, as previously reported by Variety in January, the band has enlisted Josh Freese. While his name might not immediately ring a bell, there’s a high likelihood that you’ve either heard his work or have albums in your collection that credit him.
Freese comes to the group with a strong musical pedigree, having played alongside a star-studded lineup during the Hawkins tribute concerts organized by the Foo Fighters in London and Los Angeles last fall. He’s also a long-standing friend of both Dave Grohl and Taylor Hawkins, boasting an extensive career as a session musician. Freese has performed and toured with renowned rock bands such as Guns N’ Roses, A Perfect Circle, Puddle of Mudd, Nine Inch Nails, Weezer, Paramore, the Replacements, Sting, and the Vandals, among others. Prior to joining the Foo Fighters, he was the drummer for Danny Elfman and the Offspring, actively touring with them until last year.
Josh Freese hails from a family deeply rooted in music, with his father serving as a musical director at the Walt Disney Company and his mother possessing a background as a classically trained pianist. Additionally, he has a substantial catalog of solo projects to his name, where he assumes roles as a singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist.
Freese’s versatility is abundantly evident in his career, as he has amassed an extensive portfolio of over 300 recordings spanning diverse genres, ranging from pop to country. His creative journey has led to collaborations and songwriting contributions with notable acts like Queens of the Stone Age, Devo, and Sting. As one of the most sought-after session drummers in the industry, he has also lent his talents to recording sessions for artists such as Katy Perry, Michael Bublé, Nelly Furtado, Kelly Clarkson, Avril Lavigne, Social Distortion, and numerous others.
Reflecting on his career, Freese remarked in a 2016 interview with the Drummer’s Journal, “Becoming a session drummer wasn’t a conscious decision I made one day. It sort of happened organically. Besides having multiple income streams, I appreciate the variety of playing music with different artists in various settings. Sometimes, I daydream about being part of just one band. I’m only human.”
You can catch Josh Freese alongside the Foo Fighters during the band’s upcoming tour, commencing on May 24 at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion in Gilford, NH.