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Red Hot Chili Peppers

Red Hot Chili Peppers

Red Hot Chili Peppers

A one-of-a-kind phenomenon in rock and roll, the Red Hot Chili Pepper’s carved a unique lane in ‘80s music with their energetic fusion of funk and hard rock; but after cop-ing with a string of challenges and outright tragedies, the group transcended their niche with a series of sound-broadening LPs to become one of the world’s biggest bands. Formed in Los Angeles, California, in 1983, by vocalist Anthony Kiedis, guitarist Hillel Slovak, bassist Michael ‘Flea’ Balzary and drummer Jack Irons, the Chili Peppers se-cured a recording contract with EMI Records in surprisingly short order; then they proceeded to build a small, but dedicated following with their self-titled debut album (1984) and George Clinton-produced sophomore effort, ‘Freaky Styley’ (1985). Not until their third album, ‘The Uplift Mofo Party Plan’ (1987), though, did they even scrape the bottom of the Billboard charts, heading off on a successful tour before almost losing it all when Slovak perished due to an accidental heroin overdose on June 25, 1988. Luckily for Flea and Kiedis, they eventually found a dazzlingly talented young guitarist named John Frusciante to take their friend’s place and, after replacing the departed Irons with new drummer Chad Smith, achieved a career-salvaging breakthrough with 1989’s ‘Mother’s Milk.’ The Chili Peppers topped this by fulfilling every ounce of their long-hinted-at potential — and then some — with ’91’s multi-platinum, Rick Rubin-produced ‘Blood Sugar Sex Majik,’ which yielded a wealth of mainstream singles, including ‘Give it Away’ and ‘Under the Bridge,’ and elevated the group to globe-trotting arena headliners. Sadly, Frusciante too soon succumbed to substance abuse, and, amid other disillusionments about rock stardom, he quit the Chili Peppers in May of 1992, forcing them to hastily recruit guitarist Arik Marshall for that summer’s already booked run with Lollapalooza. The band would spend the remainder of the decade in a state of constant upheaval and transition: working briefly with guitarist Jesse Tobias before writing, record-ing and touring behind 1995’s disappointing ‘One Hot Minute’ with former Jane’s Addiction guitar slinger Dave Navarro, who would himself depart from the group by 1998. Fortunately, once again, Frusciante was by this time emerging from his own battle with heroin and agreed to rejoin the Chili Peppers for what amounted to a triumphant career comeback via 1999’s ‘Californification.’ The uncharacteristically subdued, but still warmly received, ‘By the Way’ followed in 2001, and the once-again hit-packed, Grammy Award-winning ‘Stadium Arcadium’ (2006) also kept the Red Hot Chili Peppers flying high. So much so that not even the second, significantly less traumatic departure of Frusciante in 2009 (blamed on amicable musical differences) has thus far soured the Chili Peppers’ remarkable career revival, which continued with the installment of guitarist Josh Klinghoffer prior to 2011’s ‘I’m with You’ album.

Theo Wargo, Getty Images

Red Hot Chili Peppers Bassist Flea Plays Host to 200,000 Bees

Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea has started an apiary in his backyard with three beehives.

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Category: News, Rock Tags: ,
Red Hot Chili Peppers 1989

26 Years Ago: Red Hot Chili Peppers Release ‘Mother’s Milk’

On Aug. 16, 1989, Red Hot Chili Peppers started to gain traction with the release of their 'Mother's Milk' album.

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Red Hot Chili Peppers 1984

31 Years Ago: Red Hot Chili Peppers Release Their Self-Titled Debut Album

On Aug. 10, 1984, the Red Hot Chili Peppers released their self-titled debut album.

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Live Earth London - Backstage

Watch: Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Drummer Chad Smith Performs with Foo Fighters in NYC

Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith lent an assist to Foo Fighters' New York Citi Field show on a cover of a Faces classic.

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Red Hot Chili Peppers 2002
Warner Bros.

13 Years Ago: Red Hot Chili Peppers Release ‘By the Way’

On July 9, 2002, Red Hot Chili Peppers kept the momentum going with the 'Californication' follow-up, 'By the Way.'

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Pearl Jam vs. Red Hot Chili Peppers
Gareth Cattermole, Getty Images / Mary Ouellette,

Pearl Jam vs. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Best Live Band, Round 1

Vote for either Pearl Jam or Red Hot Chili Peppers in this Best Live Band competition.

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Red Hot Chili Peppers
Warner Bros.

16 Years Ago: Red Hot Chili Peppers Release ‘Californication’

On June 8, 1999, Red Hot Chili Peppers revived their career and John Frusciante got a more positive second act with the 'Californication' album.

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Anthony Kiedis Bear

Anthony Kiedis, Ozzy Osbourne + Duff McKagan Support ‘Let a Bear Sh!t in the Woods’ Campaign

Red Hot Chili Peppers' Anthony Kiedis, Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne, Duff McKagan and others are among the celebrities that are joining forces for a new campaign.

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Will Ferrell + Chad Smith

Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Chad Smith Discusses Potential Tour With Will Ferrell

Red Hot Chili Peppers' Chad Smith took part in a chat and discussed the possibilities of a 'Blood Sugar Sex Magik' anniversary and Will Ferrell tours.

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Red Hot Chili Peppers Chad Smith
Kris Connor, Getty Images

Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Chad Smith Hopes to Start Recording New Album in Early 2015

Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith reveals the band is almost done writing for their new album and that they're eyeing an early 2015 recording start.

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