Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea was depressed taking prescription drugs

Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea's "creative spirit went into decline" when he was on prescription pain medication. The 55-year-old musician - whose real name is Michael Balzary - broke his arm while he was snowboarding and his doctor gave him a two-month prescription of Oxycontin for the pain after he underwent surgery, but Flea has complained the drug made him depressed at the same time as easing his pain. In an opinion piece for Time Magazine, the bass player spoke out on America's opioid crisis and said: "Many who are suffering today were introduced to drugs through their healthcare providers. When I was a kid, my doctor would give me a butterscotch candy after a check-up. Now, they're handing out scripts. It's hard to beat temptation when the person supplying you has a fancy job and credentials and it's usually bad advice not to trust them. "I was high as hell when I took those things. It not only quelled my physical pain, but all my emotions as well. I only took one a day, but I was not present for my kids, my creative spirit went into decline and I became depressed." Flea ended up only taking the pills for one month but revealed he could have easily had the prescription topped up. He said: "There is obviously a time when painkillers should be prescribed, but medical professions should be more discerning. "It's also equally obvious that part of any opioid prescription should include follow-up, monitoring and a clear solution and path to rehabilitation if anyone becomes addicted. Big pharma could pay for this with a percentage of their huge profits." Flea's comments come after the late Tom Petty's wife and daughter, Dana and Adria, both took to Facebook to vocalize their hopes that his death at the age of 66 from an accidental overdose of prescription painkillers, sedatives and an antidepressant will spark a conversation about opioid abuse in the US. Continue Reading

Red Hot Chili Peppers fans boo band for implying Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard should be a Laker

By Madalyn Mendoza, Updated 7:06 pm, Sunday, January 8, 2017 window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-5', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 5', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-10', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 10', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-15', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 15', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-20', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 20', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-25', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 25', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-30', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 30', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-35', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 35', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-40', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 40', target_type: Continue Reading

Bassist Flea reveals the Red Hot Chili Peppers were confused for Metallica in Belarusian airport

It was one Red Hot mistake. Red Hot Chili Peppers' bass player Flea revealed on Instagram Saturday that the band was mistaken for the heavy metal band Metallica at a Belarusian airport. To make matters worse, Flea, 53, said customs officials wouldn't let the band go through security unless they signed Metallica memorabilia. "We tried to explain to them that we weren't Metallica but they insisted that we sign anyway. They had the power," he wrote to his 188,000 followers. The superstar bassist, born Michael Peter Balzary, ended up complying with the confused custom agents. "Well I did play fight fire with with with Metallica once. I love Metallica anyways but I'm no Robert Trujillo," he joked, along with a photo of himself signing several Metallica CDs and photos. The band, which released their album "The Getaway" in June, is on tour in Europe. Continue Reading

SEE IT: Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea rocks out with Koko the gorilla

Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea spent the weekend jamming out with a new bandmate: Koko the gorilla. The 53-year-old musician posted photos and videos with his new friend to social media, including one video of the 45-year-old gorilla strumming along on his guitar. “This is just the greatest thing that could ever happen,” Flea said in the video. "This is the day that I will never forget in my life." Koko gained game after learning more than 1,000 signs of “Gorilla Sign Language.” She can also reportedly understand 2,000 words in English. “Koko was thrilled by the mellow sounds and a jamming session followed with Koko strumming on Flea's bass!” The Gorilla Foundation wrote online. The foundation also hinted at “future collaborations between the two,” so look for a contributing credit for Coco on the next Red Hot Chili Peppers album. Continue Reading

Red Hot Chili Peppers join James Corden for ‘Carpool Karaoke’

James Corden can't stop with his star-studded karaoke. All four members of the Red Hot Chili Peppers squeezed into a car and joined the late-night host in his latest round of "Carpool Karaoke." They even put safety first and buckled in. The rockers and the comedian sang along to hits "Under the Bridge," "Can't Stop" and "Californication." They also played their new single "Dark Necessities" from their upcoming 11th album "The Getaway." True to fashion, front man Anthony Kiedis soon went for a shirtless look, joined by Corden and bassist Flea. During the bizarre ride-along, the new friends even pulled over to wrestle. Kiedis and Corden grappled on a stranger's lawn. Needless to say, Corden was the loser. The group's appearance is the latest celebrity coup Corden has achieved in his popular segment. Elton John, George Clooney, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Adele have taken a drive with the rapper. Continue Reading

Red Hot Chili Peppers singer Anthony Kiedis hospitalized for stomach flu before Weenie Roast gig

Red Hot Chili Peppers lead singer Anthony Kiedis was hospitalized for a stomach flu late Saturday, prompting the California rock band to cancel their anticipated Weenie Roast gig. The 53-year-old rocker and former drug addict is expected to make a full recovery after being taken away in an ambulance due to “extreme stomach pains” shortly before the band headlined KROQ’s annual festival, Billboard reported. Bassist Flea cited a “medical thing” when addressing a packed crowd at the Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre in Irvine, Calif., alongside the remaining Peppers. Weezer filled the headline slot instead. “We are devastated about it,” said Flea, whose real name is Michael Balzary. “We live to rock, we live to f---ing kick deep into the depths of our hearts and rock, but unfortunately there’s a medical thing that happened and we need to deal with it.” The singer’s bout with sickness also resulted in the band nixing their iHeart Radio concert slated for Tuesday, a band spokesperson stated on their website. As concern for Kiedis’ health grew on social media, Nancy Mack, the wife of Peppers drummer Chad Smith, responded to fans on Twitter. “Even super healthy guys get sick,” Mack wrote. Photographer David Mushegain, who published a tribute to Red Hot Chili Peppers fans with Kiedis in 2014, also came to his friend’s defense and said “everything is going to be ok” in an Instagram post. Kiedis had a brush with near-death health in 2008 after he nearly suffered organ failure while battling kidney disease. The frontman for the 33-year-old band struggled with drug addiction during the group’s early years. With News Wire Services Continue Reading

Red Hot Chili Peppers to join Bruno Mars for Super Bowl halftime show: report

They might need some extra socks. California funk-rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers – infamous for sometimes taking the stage with only tube socks covering their private parts – is reportedly joining headline act Bruno Mars for the Super Bowl XLVIII halftime show on Feb. 2 in chilly New Jersey. Mars invited the group to join him for the big game at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford and is expected to announce their addition to the line-up this Saturday during TV coverage of the New Orleans Saints-Seattle Seahawks playoff match-up, an unidentified source told the Los Angeles Times. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012, the Red Hot Chili Peppers are currently on tour following the release of their tenth studio album, “I’m With You,” in 2011. They’re set to play WFAN’s “Big Hello To Brooklyn” pre-Super Bowl concert at Barclays Center on Feb. 1. An NFL spokesman reached by The Times referred a request for comment to Mars' spokeswoman, who declined to confirm the report. Though still edgy, the Red Hot Chili Peppers are expected to appeal to an older viewing demographic since they’ve been churning out hits such as “Give It Away” and “Suck My Kiss” for decades. Lead singer Anthony Kiedis and bassist Michael “Flea” Balzary are both 51 years old. A call to the legendary group’s publicist was not immediately returned Friday. Mars, meanwhile, released his first album, “Doo-Wops & Hooligans,” in 2010. The 28-year-old behind the hits “Locked Out of Heaven” and “Grenade” has been nominated in five categories for the upcoming Grammy Awards. [email protected] Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

Red Hot Chili Peppers get confused for Metallica in Belarusian airport

Red Hot Chili Peppers bass player Flea doesn't look much like his Metallica counterpart Robert Trujillo, though that didn't keep customs officials in a Belarusian airport from mixing up the two.Currently on tour with his band in Europe, Flea recounted in an Instagram posting on Saturday what happened when they landed, got called into an office at the airport and subsequently were asked to sign a bunch of Metallica CDs and photos."We tried to explain to them that we weren't Metallica but they insisted that we sign anyway. They had the power," Flea said in the social-media post, which shows the bassist writing his own name in the white margins of the publicity photos.Flea reminded fans of the time he sat in with Metallica on the song Fight Fire with Fire at a 2008 benefit concert, but added that "I'm no Robert Trujillo."The Chili Peppers, who released their newest studio effort The Getaway last month, stop in Chicago on July 30 for Lollapalooza and continue their international tour through November. Continue Reading

Red Hot Chili Peppers say Bonnaroo is favorite festival

Fifteen years ago, a massive modern rock act like Red Hot Chili Peppers would be just a little out of place at Bonnaroo - which started as a haven for homegrown jam bands. But in 2017, they're the headliners bringing the festival back to its funky rock roots.  Complete coverage: Photos, videos and more from Bonnaroo 2017 And five years after they joined the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the California band seems to be truly defying its age. On Saturday night, Bonnaroo's tie-dyed old schoolers and hip young newcomers united in the field to groove to the likes of "Dani California" and other opening favorites. On the other hand, the band's beloved oddball bassist, Flea, came to Manchester, Tenn., to check out the full moon. He's a man who knows what he likes: when the band made their Bonnaroo debut in 2012, he made similar remarks about the moon hanging overhead. Clearly, that experience left an impression. "We've played a million f---ing festivals," He said. "This is my favorite one." More: Chance The Rapper: King of Bonnaroo And in both sound and spirit, the Peppers topped their first Bonnaroo appearance on Saturday. It was a set that joyfully veered from hits ("Scar Tissue") to covers (The Stooges' "I Wanna Be Your Dog") to extended free form jams, and the latter is something Bonnaroo is seeing a lot less of these days. One jam included a dedication to Johnny and June Cash, or as frontman Anthony Kiedis referred to them, "Johnny and June, singing under the moon."These guys really like the moon, huh? I kid. And these days, folks like to poke quite a bit of fun at the Peppers, with their signature funky style and the many hits with "California" in the chorus. But it's only so easy to joke about because it's that distinct, that unmistakable.  More: Bonnaroo 2017: Faces of the festival ("Under the Bridge" band's hit ballad from that same era, was sorely absent)"Peace and love to Continue Reading

Winter concerts for Phoenix: Green Day, Bon Jovi, Ariana Grande, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Shins, Jake Owen

We've got three major festivals -- the ever-expanding Viva PHX, the 14th annual McDowell Mountain Music Festival and Pot of Gold -- bringing winter in metro Phoenix to a close after two major EDM festivals at Rawhide and the Phoenix Open Birds Nest Concert series.Even if you factored out those main events, though, we'd be looking at a very busy season, with tours by Green Day, Bon Jovi, Ariana Grande, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Alter Bridge and AFI all swinging through.Here's a guide to get you through the season, from the giant festivals to smaller concerts by the likes of Surfer Blood and Angel Olsen, both of whom are well worth dropping everything to see.This show is headlined by Kehlani, the 21-year-old who made it to the finals on "America's Got Talent" with her old group, Poplyfe, in 2014 and was nominated for a Grammy earlier this year (a Best Urban Contemporary Album nod for "You Should Be Here"). Her best-known tracks are R&B hits "CRZY" and "Gangsta." Also playing: Kap G, Amine and A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie.Details: 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17. Celebrity Theatre, 440 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. $25-$45. 602-267-1600 ext. 1, two-time Grammy winners are on a Christmas tour with Lauren Daigle, debuting their new Christmas single, “Glorious,” in a set that's also sure to features their chart-topping Christian hits “Fix My Eyes,” “Shoulders,” and “Priceless” (from the feature film of the same name in theaters now).Details: 6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18. Grand Canyon University Arena, 3300 W. Camelback Road, Phoenix. $19.50-$34.50. 602-639-8979, guitarist George Lynch put Lynch Mob together in the wake of Dokken’s breakup, bringing home raves for a debut called “Wicked Sensation,” which hit the charts in 1990, spinning off two rock radio hits – the title track and “River Continue Reading