Who is the real Chad Smith?
On Thursday night, an epic drum battle between Will Ferrell and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith took place on The Tonight Show.
Uproxx explains the history of this battle that fans have been waiting for. For years, Smith has had to deal with fans of the comedian who walk up to him asking for autographs. It is something that he has learned to accept, and he typically just offers them an explanation that he is not Ferrell.
“People come up to me in airports and they’re asking for my autograph, not because I’m the drummer for the Chili Peppers – they really think I’m Will Ferrell. And I’m nice to these people. ‘No, I’m not,’ But they’re like, ‘I loved you in ‘Old School.’ You’re so funny,'”
Smith had already met Ferrell face-to-face at a party in Los Angeles years ago. He was getting food from the buffet table and noticed that Will Ferrell was a person away from him. The guy between them left, and Ferrell looked at Smith from head to foot and said, “You’re very handsome.”
Ferrell came up with the idea of a drum battle in a Reddit AMA last February wherein he acknowledged his resemblance to the drummer. “A lot of people think that it’s me playing for the Red Hot Chili Peppers. But that would be an insult to Chad Smith. The truth of the matter is there is no Will Ferrell. Only Chad Smith.”
Last week, Smith told Rolling Stone that he will have a drum-off against Ferrell to “see who the real Chad Smith is.”
Both Smith and Ferrell agreed to the drum-off to raise money for charity, with the drummer raising money for Little Kids Rock, and the actor for Cancer for College.
The drum-off on The Tonight Show was the first time the lookalikes appeared together in public. They arrived in matching outfits: KISS shirts, sneakers, blue baseball caps, and black leather jackets. The resemblance was evident more than ever.
Before their drum battle, the two sat on the couch to talk about what ignited the “feud.” “Do you remember where you were when you heard about this imposter” Jimmy Fallon asked Ferrell. “Yeah. I was jammin’. I was jammin’ with the Chili Peppers, with my guys,” answered the comedian. The two guests also talked about the charities they were raising money for.
Fallon then announced the start of the drum battle. “You know what the audience wants. You know what I want. You guys ready to do this?” he asked.
Two drum kits were set up on stage, and Ferrell and Smith sat behind them. The battle started off with simple solos, and moved on to more complex ones as the battle went on. Smith was evidently the winner, but Ferrell also did a good job with the help of Questlove, who was the “ghost drummer” playing right beside him.
Ferrell eventually exchanged his drum kit for a cowbell, and the rest of the members of the Red Hot Chili Peppers entered the stage and started to sing their rendition of “Don’t Fear the Reaper” by Blue Öyster Cult. Fallon announced Ferrell as the winner, and presented him with a golden cowbell.
E! Online reported that Ferrell and Smith had a side bet. “If I win, he has to wash my car for a month and give me pedicures,” Smith said. “If I lose, I have to be his stand-in for his next film.”
[Image via NBC /Billboard]