Red Hot Chili Peppers, Super Bowl Performers: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

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From left, Anthony Kiedis, Jack Irons, Cliff Martinez, Chad Smith, Josh Klinghoffer, Michael Balzary aka Flea pose in a press-room during the 27th Annual Rock And Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. (Getty)

The Super Bowl is about to get spicy. Not because of the hot buffalo wings, but because of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. The band has been rocking out since 1983. Now, they will have the performance at the Super Bowl Halftime Show to add to their resume.

They were inducted into Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2012. On the the Hall’s website, the band’s success was summarized like this:

The Red Hot Chili Peppers created a synthesis of punk, funk, rock and rap to become one of the most popular and inventive groups of modern times. They have sold more than 60 million albums worldwide, and five of their albums have been certified multiplatinum in the U.S. They created two of the defining albums of the Nineties.

1. Bruno Mars Hand-Picked the Band to Perform at the Halftime Show

Bruno chose his musical idols to perform at the Met Life Studio with him. As luck would have it, the ‘Californication’ singers happen to be headlining radio station WFAN’s “Big Hello to Brooklyn” concert at the Barclays Center the night before. reported that Mars sang the band’s praises at a recent press conference.

The first name that I thought of was Red Hot Chili Peppers. I’ve been a fan of theirs for such a long time. I’ve admired their career. They’re just a soulful band. And not just musically, but as people. I sat down with Flea and he’s so passionate with music. Even till this day, after doing it for so long he’s still so passionate about creating music and performing. I want to surround myself with guys like that forever. It’s an honor to be sharing the stage with them. They’re one of my personal favorite bands of all time. I’m excited for that.

When Chili Pepper’s drummer Chad Smith was interviewed by KROQ, he explained how the collaboration came about.

We know of the Bruno Mars, but we’re not homies. This is what I know: The NFL said to Bruno, ‘You can have a special guest, and choose whomever you like.’ Bruno chose the Red Hot Chili Peppers because he’s a big fan, unbeknownst to us. He called us and said ‘Hey, would you guys be my guest at the halftime show, come and do a jam?’ We said sure, sounds like fun.

During that same radio interview, he dispelled the myth that the band would play Led Zeppelin’s ‘Dazed and Confused,’ during the Halftime Show- a rumor that had been started because of one of Smith’s comments. “People in the media are so gullible sometimes,” he said.
He added that the band would not reveal the song before game day.

Obviously I can’t tell you what we’re going to do, it would ruin the surprise. Come on, you gotta watch!

2. The Band Was Formed at Fairfax High School in L.A.

In 1977, guitarist Hillel Slovak and drummer Jack Irons formed a hard-rock band, Anthym, with friends at Fairfax. Flea became the bass player in 1979, and another high school friend, Anthony Kiedis, became the vocalist. Anthym evolved into What Is This?, a New Wave group.

The band is known for their memorable performances.
Singer Anthony Kiedis told writer Steve Roeser,

It’s the sign of a good show. When you come off bleeding with bones poking out of you, you know that you put on a good show.

3. Their Super Bowl Drum Set Will Be Auctioned Off to Benefit Make-a-Wish

The set that Smith rocks out on during the big game will be broken into two Drum Sets – an AFC kit and an NFC kit- and auctioned off for the charity.

According to Forbes, the auction will be held at NFL Shop at Super Bowl at Macy’s Herald Square in New York City. There will be more than 400 items for sale, including game-used jerseys, cleats, footballs and items from other Super Bowls.

NME reported that Smith is very charitable, giving to Surfer’s Healing and MusiCares.

4. Their Original Guitarist Died of a Heroin Overdose

Hillel Slovak was only 25 when he was found dead in his apartment. According to Yahoo, the Israeli- born musician only got to play on two Chili Peppers albums — 1985’s Freaky Styley and 1987’s The Uplift Mofo Party Plan.

In his memoir Scar Tissue, Kiedis said,

I’d give my firstborn son to get him back in the band.

Throughout their history, they’ve had to change drummers quite often.

5. Singer Anthony Kiedis Was Named Sexiest Male Vegetarian Alive

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People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) honored him with this title in 2008.
The singer went vegan after learning about the depletion of fish and also because a doctor recommended a vegan diet for his son, Everly Bear.

According to PETA, in Kiedes’ memoir, he talked about why he decided to change his eating habits.

Soon after I [went vegan] I saw some documentary footage of what happens in the factory farming of cows …. It sealed the deal.