Watch Joan Jett and Travis Barker perform Cherry Bomb with Foo Fighters in heartfelt tribute to “beautiful soul” Taylor Hawkins

Joan Jett played Cherry Bomb and shared memories of friend and former tour mate Taylor Hawkins last night (September 27), as she appeared at the LA tribute show for the Foo Fighters drummer. 

Fan footage shows Dave Grohl taking to the mic first and introducing the event to those assembled in LA’s Kia Forum. 

“What we really wanted to do was to pay tribute to Taylor in a way where you could spend some time in his musical mind, which could be a pretty terrifying place,” explains Grohl in the footage above. 

“But just as the show in London we have all gathered here today to celebrate this person that has touched our lives, whether from afar, or for all of his friends and family and loved ones and musician buddies and heroes that are here tonight… So what we’ve done, is we’ve brought an even fucking crazier cast of characters for you tonight, to tear it up with the people that Taylor loved and by the people that loved Taylor.”

Grohl then welcomes Jett to the stage to open the proceedings and the rock icon proves visibly moved by the occasion.

“I have lot of beautiful memories of Taylor… I’m not going to be able to get through this without crying. He was such a beautiful soul,” she says.  

“He was such a beautiful soul, as a person, as a human being and like Dave said, he was such a music fan. He loved all kinds of stuff and, I guess that makes me a bit of a snob, but he really does love everything and I was honoured that he was a fan of mine, too, and my music. So I just want to say, thank you for having me, thanks Taylor for being there with me and we’ll form our supergroup when we get there with you, OK?”

The band is then diverted into Runaways classic Cherry Bomb, ably backed by Travis Barker, which you can view above. It’s a no-nonsense performance that does not attempt to add frills or frippery to the hard rock anthem. 

Yesterday‘s appearance was not Jett’s first with the group. The guitarist and songwriter has performed with Foo Fighters multiple times, including at Madison Square Garden in 2011

The LA gig marked the second Taylor Hawkins tribute show, following the previous event in London on September 7. Elsewhere, the night featured appearances from members of Rush and Soundgarden, The Darkness’ Justin Hawkins, Chad Smith, Krist Novoselic, Nancy Wilson, Josh Homme, Def Leppard, Wolfgang Van Halen and many more. 

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Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk (opens in new tab), which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.