American alternative rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers, now comprising of Anthony Kiedis (vocals), Flea (bass), Chad Smith (drums) and Josh Klinghoffer (guitar), have released such successful studio albums as “Blood Sugar Sex Magik” (1991), “Californication” (1999), “By the Way” (2002) and “Stadium Arcadium” (2006). With over 15 million copies sold worldwide, “Californication” became the band's highest selling album to date, while “Stadium Arcadium” gave the band their first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200. They have produced No. 1 hit singles on the Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks with “Give It Away” (1991), “Soul to Squeeze” (1993), “My Friends” (1995), “Scar Tissue” (1999), “Otherside” (2000), “Californication” (2000), “By the Way” (2002), “Can't Stop” (2002), “Dani California” (2006), “Tell Me Baby” (2006) and “Snow (Hey Oh)” (2006). A multiple Grammy winning group, Red Hot Chili Peppers picked up their first Grammy Award in 1992 for “Give It Away” in the category of Best Hard Rock Performance With Vocals. They went on to receive the Best Hard Rock Performance With Vocals Award for “Scar Tissue” in 2000 and the awards for Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal for “Dani California” in 2007. Also in 2007, the band won the Best Rock Album and Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package categories for the album “Stadium Arcadium.” The band was also awarded the Angel Award for Best Soundtrack for “Red Hot Chili Peppers: Untitled Documentary” at the 2007 Monaco International Film Festival.
Tony Flow & the Miraculously Majestic Masters of Mayhem
Childhood and Family:
In Los Angeles, California, 1983, Red Hot Chili Peppers was founded by Anthony Kiedis (born November 1, 1962), Hillel Slovak (born April 13, 1962, died June 25, 1988), Flea (born Michael Peter Balzary on October 16, 1962) and Jack Irons (born July 18, 1962) at Hollywood's Fairfax High School. The foursome first called themselves Tony Flow & the Miraculously Majestic Masters of Mayhem and made their debut performance as an opening act for Gary and Neighbor's Voices at the Rhythm Lounge. Although it was intended to be a one time performance, they were asked to perform the following week. Due to this surprising success, the band took on the name Red Hot Chili Peppers. The band recruited new drummer Cliff Martinez and new guitarist Jack Sherman as replacements for Irons and Slovak. From then on, Red Hot Chili Peppers continued to experience a series of lineup changes. After Sherman left in 1985, Slovak returned to the band but died of a heroin overdose in 1988. Irons, who rejoined the band in 1986, decided to leave after Slovak's death and was briefly replaced by D.H. Peligro in 1988 before the band found a permanent replacement in Chad Smith (born October 25, 1961). The band recruited guitarist John Frusciante (born March 5, 1970) as Slovak's replacement. In 1992, after the success of “Blood Sugar Sex Magik,” Frusciante suddenly quit and the band employed guitarist Arik Marshall to finish the tour. Guitarist Dave Navarro then joined the band in 1993, replacing guitarist Jesse Tobias, but left later in 1998 because of creative differences. Shortly after, Frusciante, who had recovered from his addiction to heroin, was reunited with the band at Flea's request. Hr would remain with the group until 2009. Current guitarist Josh Klinghoffer (born October 3, 1979) officially joined Red Hot Chili Peppers as its permanent guitarist on February 8, 2010. Klinghoffer formerly worked on Frusciante's solo projects and also as a sideman for the band.
After playing shows at various clubs, Red Hot Chili Peppers signed a record deal with EMI and released the self titled album “The Red Hot Chili Peppers” on August 10, 1984. Produced by Gang of Four guitarist Andy Gill, the album, recorded with Kiedis, Flea, Martinez and Sherman, earned mixed reviews from critics. However, it did achieve college airplay and MTV rotation.
On August 16, 1985, Red Hot Chili Peppers launched their sophomore effort, “Freaky Styley,” with the founding guitarist Hillel Slovak. Produced by George Clinton of Parliament-Funkadelic, the album failed to garner mainstream success but produced the singles “Jungle Man,” “American Ghost Dance,” “Catholic School Girls Rule” and “Hollywood (Africa).” In 1986, the band appeared in the film “Thrashin'” playing the song “Black Eyed Blonde” from “Freaky Styley.” The same year, they also wrote and performed the song “Set It Straight” for the movie “Tough Guys,” which starred Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas.
Now consisting of the all four original members, Kiedis, Flea, Slovak and Irons, the band released the album “The Uplift Mofo Party Plan” on September 29, 1987. Produced by Michael Beinhorn, the album peaked at No. 148 on the Billboard 200 and earned gold certification. It yielded two singles with “Fight Like a Brave” and “Me and My Friends.” In spite of the success, Slovak died of a drug overdose in 1988 and Irons left the group.
After recruiting new guitarist John Frusciante and new drummer Chad Smith in 1988, Red Hot Chili Peppers released the album “Mother's Milk” on August 16, 1989. Still produced by Beinhorn, the album enjoyed greater financial success and rose to No. 52 on the Billboard 200. It was certified gold by RIAA in March 1990 and has since achieved platinum status. Serving as a tribute to Slovak, the single “Knock Me Down” became the band's first hit when it went to No. 6 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks. The second single, “Higher Ground,” a cover of Stevie Wonder's 1973 hit, peaked at No. 11 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks and No. 26 on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks and became the group's first U.K. successful single, where it peaked at No.54. The group's version was featured in several films, including “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie” (1995), “Center Stage” (2000), “Walking Tall” (2004), “The Longest Yard” (2005) and “The Karate Kid” (2010). The third and final single, “Taste the Pain,” peaked at No. 29 in the U.K.
A year after switching to Warner Bros. Records, Red Hot Chili Peppers enjoyed mainstream commercial success with “Blood Sugar Sex Magik,” which was released on September 24, 1991, with new producer Rick Rubin. The album rocketed to No. 3 on the Billboard 200 and went 7x’s platinum in the U.S. It also charted at No. 5 in the U.K., where it eventually went platinum. It also became a chart topper in Canada, Australia and Germany. The single “Give It Away” (1991) peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks and No. 73 on the Billboard Hot 100. It became the band's first U.K. Top 10 hit by peaking at No. 9. The song won the band their first Grammy Award in 1992, for Best Hard Rock Performance With Vocals. Released on March 10, 1992, the single “Under the Bridge” was also a success. It peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and the Billboard's Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks, No. 6 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks, and was certified platinum by RIAA. The third single, “Suck My Kiss,” charted at No. 15 on the Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks and No. 8 on the Australian ARIA Singles Chart, while the last single, “Breaking the Girl,” peaked at No. 19 on the Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks, No.15 on the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks, and No. 41 on the U.K. Singles Chart.
Uncomfortable with the band's success, Frusciante abruptly quit
the band during the “Blood Sugar Japanese” tour in May
1992 so the band hired guitarist Arik Marshall to complete the tour.
Marshall was briefly replaced by Jesse Tobias of the Los Angeles
based band Mother Tongue before the band recruited guitarist Dave
Navarro. Making his first appearance with the Peppers at “Woodstock
'94,” Navarro went on to perform with the band when they served
as an opening for The Rolling Stones, which became part of the band's
brief tour in 1994. The following year, the band released the album
“One Hot Minute,” with guitarist Navarro. It rose to No.
4 on the Billboard 200 and No. 2 on the U.K. Albums chart, and became
a chart topper in Finland, New Zealand and Australia. It eventually
went double platinum in the U.S., platinum in Canada and gold in the
U.K. “One Hot Minute” yielded the hit singles “Warped,”
“My Friends” and “Aeroplane.” Navarro was
ultimately fired from the band because of creative differences in
1998. Soon after, the band was reunited with Frusciante, who had just
completed drug rehabilitation.
The seventh studio album, “Californication,” was released on June 8, 1999. It sold over 15 million units worldwide and peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard 200. It also made the Top 10 in the U.K. (#5), New Zealand, Australia and Finland (all #1) and Canada (#2). The album received a Grammy nomination for Best Rock Album in 2000. The debut single, “Scar Tissue,” spent 16 weeks on top of the Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart and 10 weeks at the top of the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. It also rose to No. 9 on Billboard Hot 100 and charted at No. 15 on the U.K. Singles chart. The song won a 2000 Grammy for Best Rock Song. The next single, “Around the World,” peaked at No. 7 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks and No. 16 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks. The third single, “Otherside,” peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, No. 2 on the Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart and No. 14 on the Billboard Hot 100. The title track hit No. 1 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks and Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks, No. 69 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 16 on the U.K. charts. Released only in Europe, the single “Road Trippin'” peaked at No. 30 in the U.K. The band supported the album with a two year world tour.
The band released the album “By the Way” on July 9, 2002. The album went to No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and hit No. 1 in the U.K., Canada, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany, Australia and New Zealand. It was also certified double platinum by RIAA and the title track topped the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks and the Mainstream Rock Tracks. It also peaked at No. 34 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 2 on the U.K. Top 40. The second single, “The Zephyr Song,” rose to No. 49 on the Billboard Hot 100, No. 6 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks, No. 14 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks and No. 11 on the U.K. Singles chart. The third single, “Can't Stop,” peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks, No. 15 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks, and No. 57 on the Billboard Hot 100. The last two singles, “Dosed” and “Universally Speaking,” went to No. 13 on the U.S. Modern Rock tracks and No. 27 on the U.K. Singles Chart, respectively. The band embarked on an eighteen month long world tour in support of the album.
On November 18, 2003, the band launched the compilation album “Greatest Hits,” a follow up to the EMI released “What Hits” (1992). The album peaked at No. 18 on the Billboard 200 and No. 4 in the U.K. It went platinum in the U.S., and triple platinum in the U.K. The band recorded the new songs “Fortune Faded” and “Save the Population” for the “Greatest Hits” album, with the first charting at No. 8 on the U.S. Modern Rock Tracks and No. 22 on the U.S. Mainstream Rock Tracks.
In May 2006, the band resurfaced with “Stadium Arcadium,” their first record of new material since 2002. It received primarily positive reviews from critics and hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200, the U.K., Canada, Switzerland, Sweden, Poland and New Zealand, to name just a few countries. It generated the singles “Dani California” (#1 on the U.S. Modern Rock Tracks and U.S. Mainstream Rock Track; #6 U.S. Hot 100), “Snow ((Hey Oh)” (#1 U.S. Mod.), “Tell Me Baby” (#1 U.S. Mod.), “Desecration Smile” (#27 U.K.) and “Hump de Bump” (#8 U.S. Mod. & #27 U.S. Main). “Stadium Arcadium” brought the band seven Grammy nominations in 2007, including an award for Best Rock Album and one for Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package.
After the last leg of the tour promoting “Stadium Arcadium,” the band members took an extended break. Kiedis spent the time taking care of his new son, while Flea enrolled for a college course. Meanwhile, Frusciante pursued his solo career and released the album “The Empyrean.” Smith worked with Sammy Hagar, Joe Satriani and Michael Anthony and on his solo project, “Chad Smith's Bombastic Meatbats.” In 2008, the band briefly returned to the studio to contribute a cover of Shirley and Lee's classic “Let the Good Times Roll” to George Clinton's album “George Clinton and His Gangsters of Love.” In May 2009, Kiedis, Flea and Smith performed under the name The Insects, along with Ron Wood, Josh Klinghoffer and Ivan Neville at the fifth annual MusiCares event honoring Kiedis.
In October 2009, the band ended their hiatus but Frusciante left the band two months later in order to focus on his solo career. He was replaced by Josh Klinghoffer, the band's second guitarist during their “Stadium Arcadium” world tour. The new line up, with Klinghoffer, made their debut live performance on January 29, 2010, at MusiCares, which was honoring Neil Young. Their new album is scheduled to be released in June 2011.
Grammy: Best Rock Album, “Stadium Arcadium,” 2007
Grammy: Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package, “Stadium Arcadium,” 2007
Grammy: Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal, “Dani California,” 2007
Monaco International Film Festival: Angel Award, Best Soundtrack, “Red Hot Chili Peppers: Untitled Documentary,” 2007
Grammy: Best Rock Song, “Scar Tissue,” 2000
Grammy: Best Hard Rock Performance With Vocals, “Give It Away,” 1992
MTV Video Music: Viewer's Choice Award and Breakthrough Video, “Under the Bridge,” 1992