The dust has settled, and an event that was greeted with a degree of skepticism in some quarters has been universally acclaimed as an extraordinary, life-affirming triumph.
Imaginatively planned, slickly choreographed and undoubtedly emotional, the Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert was a show – like Live Aid, or the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert – that people will talk about for decades. For every person lucky enough to get a ticket for Wembley Stadium, another six will claim to have been there.
It was a night of surprises. Them Crooked Vultures. The James Gang. Alex and Geddy.
It was a night that flipped wildly between grief and joy. Brian May performing Love Of My Life, the stadium a galaxy of smartphone torches. Shane Hawkins beating the hell out of his dad’s kit And Dave Grohl. Dave Grohl!
It was a night when Grohl, who’s always produced those isolated moments of magic at Foo Fighters shows – dragging audience members onstage or bringing surprise superstars in from the wings – showed he could somehow sustain such wizardly for hours on end, all the while being put through a physical and emotional wringer. It was truly a performance for the ages.
There’s another show set for the Kia Forum in Los Angeles on September 27. Many of the performers from London will be there. Some fresh faces will appear. Can such magic happen again? It’s hard to imagine that those levels of emotional intensity can possibly be sustained. But with Dave Grohl at the helm, anything is possible.
A gallery of images from Wembley stadium follows. Click the arrows to navigate through the slideshow.
Image 1 of 28
Image 1 of 28