Red Hot Chili Peppers

9.3M Plays

Latest Song

Trending Now


Music Videos


All Time Hits


Featured in

Similar Artists


Red Hot Chili Peppers is an alternative rock band formed in Los Angeles, California, in 1983. The band was formed by vocalist Anthony Kiedis, guitarist Hillel Slovak, bassist Michael "Flea" Balzary, and drummer Jack Irons after they met while attending Fairfax High School. Since its inception, Red Hot Chili Peppers has maintained a four-member lineup, with fourteen official members overall. In late 1983, two weeks before signing with EMI, Slovak and Irons had obtained a record deal with MCA Records with their other band, What Is This?, and left Red Hot Chili Peppers. Rather than dissolving the band, Kiedis and Flea decided to recruit new members. Cliff Martinez was hired as the band's new drummer while Martinez's bandmate in The Weirdos, guitarist, Dix Denney was expected to replace Slovak however after a few rehearsals the band felt he didn't fit and auditions continued. It was down to guitarist Mark Nine and Jack Sherman, a guy the band knew nothing about however after practicing with Sherman they that he was the best fit because he worked well with Flea and Martinez. With Martinez and Sherman aboard, the band released their eponymous debut album on August 10, 1984. During the ensuing tour, continuing musical and lifestyle tension between Kiedis and Sherman complicated the transition between concert and daily band life. Sherman was fired soon after, with Slovak returning to the Chili Peppers in 1985 after growing tired of What Is This?. At one point, Chuck Biscuits filled in on drums during the 1985 tour. The band dismissed Cliff Martinez from the group in April 1986 due to personal differences and replaced him with founding member Jack Irons, who was out of work and finally separated from other commitments. During this period, however, Kiedis and Slovak had both developed serious drug addictions, which resulted in Kiedis being briefly fired that same year. At one performance, longtime friend and then Circle Jerks frontman, Keith Morris filled in for an absent Kiedis who was out scoring drugs while his band was playing a show. On June 25, 1988, Slovak died of a heroin overdose shortly after the completion of The Uplift Mofo Party Plan tour. Kiedis would then retreat into hiding, further fueling his drug habit and even skipping Slovak's funeral. After a band meeting with manager, Lindy Goetz, Irons subsequently left the group, saying that he did not want to be part of a band where his friends were dying. Attempting to cope with the death of Slovak and the departure of Irons, Kiedis and Flea temporarily employed Dead Kennedys drummer D. H. Peligro and former P-Funk guitarist DeWayne McKnight. McKnight's tenure was brief, lasting three shows in September 1988 before he was fired. He was quickly replaced by John Frusciante in October 1988 and writing for the next album quickly began. Peligro however was dealing with personal substance problems of his own and would last a few more months before he too was fired. Despite several open auditions, the band remained without a drummer. One of the final drummers to audition was Chad Smith, who Kiedis said was so proficient on the drums he "ate for breakfast". After another successful jam session, Kiedis, Frusciante and Flea admitted Smith into the Chili Peppers and was hired in November 1988. During the 1992 Japanese leg of the Blood Sugar Sex Magik tour, Frusciante, overwhelmed by the band's new-found success and his drug addiction, abruptly quit in May 1992.Circle Jerks bassist Zander Schloss was auditioned but after four days of rehearsing, Kiedis, Flea, and Smith decided that Schloss did not fit with their future plans. The band originally had wanted Dave Navarro as their guitarist but Navarro's band, Jane's Addiction had just broken up and he wasn't ready to join another band. With a major summer tour planned including a headlining spot at Lollapalooza, guitarist Arik Marshall of L.A. band Marshall Law was hired as Frusciante's official replacement and would finish out the remainder of tour with the band. Coming off their most successful tour the band was excited to start recording their next album however during pre-production of their sixth studio album, tensions grew between the band and Marshall, and they dismissed him from the band in early 1993. Shortly following Marshall's firing the band attempted to hold open auditions but they proved to be a failure although Buckethead was one of the guitarists to audtition. Kiedis attended a show by local L.A. band, Mother Tongue and quickly was drawn to the band's guitarist, Jesse Tobias. Tobias was recruited after a series of open auditions; however, his tenure with the band was brief and after weeks of writing and rehearsals for the next album the band stated that "the chemistry wasn't right" and he was fired although the band already had his replacement ready. Chad was friends with and in contact with Navarro, whom he said was now ready to join the band so on September 5, 1993 Navarro was officially hired as the band's seventh guitarist and work quickly began on the band's next record, One Hot Minute, which would be released in 1995 and was seen as a disappointment in sales compared to their previous album. The band's One Hot Minute tour proved to be successful however for the band it could easily be viewed as a disaster. Navarro never felt he fit properly in the band and the chemistry just wasn't there with him. Following attempts to write and rehearse for their seventh studio album, in April 1998, it was announced that Navarro had been fired from the band due to creative differences; Kiedis stated that the decision was "mutual". With the band on the brink of a break-up, Kiedis informed Flea that he felt the only way the band could continue is if Frusicante would return. Flea surprised Kiedis by stating he had been in contact with Frusciante and had a feeling he might be open to rejoining. That same month after Navarro's departure, Flea visited Frusciante and invited him to rejoin the band. An emotional and now sober Frusciante readily accepted the invitation. With Frusciante back, the band went on to release three of their most successful albums; 1999's Californication, 2002's By the Way and 2006's Stadium Arcadium. In late 2007 following the band's Stadium Arcadium tour, the Red Hot Chili Peppers went on a hiatus, with Kiedis citing exhaustion as the main reason. The band's hiatus lasted until October 2009 when they started to write and rehearse for their tenth album however absent from these rehearsals was Fruciante although present was the band's touring guitarist, Josh Klinghoffer leading many to speculate Frusciante had again left the band. Speculation proved to be true with Frusciante already having quit the band for a second time on July 29, 2009 however it wasn't until December 2009 in a post on his official website that he made his departure from the band official to the public. He stated that he left Red Hot Chili Peppers during the hiatus to focus on a solo career. Klinghoffer, who acted as a sideman during 2007 dates on the band's Stadium Arcadium tour and on John Frusciante's solo projects, joined the band on October 12, 2009; however, his membership was not announced until February 8, 2010. With Klinghoffer, the band saw this as a new beginning and in August 2011 they released their tenth-studio album, I'm with You. During this tour, the band added backing musicians, Mauro Refosco and Chris Warren (also Smith's drum technician) to their touring lineup. On April 14, 2012, the Red Hot Chili Peppers were inducted by Chris Rock into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Kiedis, Flea, Smith, Klinghoffer (who became the youngest inductee ever), Frusciante, Slovak, Irons and Martinez were the members inducted. Slovak was inducted on behalf of his brother, James while Frusciante, who was invited, declined the band's offer and didn't show up although was heavily praised during the induction speech by his former bandmates. Despite their contributions to the band's studio albums, Jack Sherman and Dave Navarro were neither inducted nor invited to the ceremony for unknown reasons. Both Martinez and Irons joined the band (marking the first time either drummer had performed with the Chili Peppers since their departures from the band in the 80s) onstage for a performance of "Give It Away" and "Higher Ground", which ended up in an all-star jam involving some of the night's inductees and other guest musicians. As of July 2014, the band is currently working on their eleventh studio album. As of 2011, the lineup of Red Hot Chili Peppers includes one vocalist, one bassist, one drummer, and one guitarist. The former members of Red Hot Chili Peppers consist of seven guitarists and three drummers. Red Hot Chili Peppers has employed numerous touring and studio musicians throughout its career. A touring or studio musician is an unofficial member who will perform live or contribute in the studio with the band although is not considered an official member. Vicki Calhoun, Keith Barry, and Philip Fisher did contribute to Mother's Milk (1989), where Calhoun performed backing vocals on "Knock Me Down", "Higher Ground", "Good Time Boys", and "Johnny, Kick a Hole in the Sky", Barry played tenor sax on "Subway to Venus", and Fisher provided drums on "Taste the Pain". Josh Klinghoffer was featured as a backing musician on the final half of the band's Stadium Arcadium tour and eventually become an official member replacing guitarist John Frusciante in 2009. The band's I'm with You Tour and its following tour features percussionist, Mauro Refosco. Refosco provided percussion for most of the tracks on the band's I'm with You album and related releases. The band's longtime roadie/drum tech, Chris Warren, also has joined the touring lineup providing keyboards on the most recent tours. The band has also seen musicians such as Keith Morris and Chuck Biscuits briefly fill in for a show or two. Morris, who was fronting the Circle Jerks at the time, filled in for Kiedis for a show in 1986. Kiedis was off scoring drugs and missed the band's performance so they asked Morris to fill in however Morris didn't know any of the lyrics to the songs so he screamed and yelled his way through the show. Drummer Chuck Biscuits also briefly filled in on drums back in 1985.