Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith and Pearl Jam and Soundgarden sticksman Matt Cameron have both put distance between themselves and an article in Rolling Stone about late Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins.
In the article, both Cameron and Smith are quoted as saying that Foo Fighters’ touring schedule had been detrimental to Hawkins’ health. Cameron claimed that Hawkins had spoken to Foo Fighters leader Dave Grohl about the pressure he felt, but that the band’s schedule “got even crazier after that.” Smith, meanwhile, referred to an incident when Hawkins had apparently lost consciousness aboard a plane in Chicago last December, leading to the cancellation of a show at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.
The band’s management reacted to both stories, saying that the meeting described by Cameron never took place, and that Smith’s depiction of events was “not true.” Now both drummers have walked back their remarks.
“When I agreed to take part in the Rolling Stone article about Taylor, I assumed it would be a celebration of his life and work,” Matt Cameron posted on Instagram. “My quotes were taken out of context and shaped into a narrative I had never intended. Taylor was a dear friend, and a next level artist. I miss him. I have only the deepest love and respect for Taylor, Dave and the Foo Fighters families. I am truly sorry to have taken part in this interview and I apologise that my participation may have caused harm to those for whom I have only the deepest respect and admiration.”
“Taylor was one of my best friends and I would do anything for his family,” said Smith. “I was asked by Rolling Stone to share some memories of our time together, which I thought was going to be the loving tribute he deserved. Instead, the story they wrote was sensationalised and misleading, and had I known I never would have agreed to participate. I apologise to his family and musical friends for any pain this may have caused. I miss Taylor every day.”
Two other sources talked about the pressure Hawkins was under in the Rolling Stone piece, which also detailed the days and hours leading up to his death in Bogota, Colombia, in March. One remains anonymous, while the fourth is singer Sass Jordan, who toured with Hawkins before he joined the Foo Fighters. Jordan shared a link to the Rolling Stone article on her Facebook page.