Red Hot Chili Peppers Talk 20 Years of ‘Blood Sugar Sex Magik’


Story by Cat Badra

Anthony Kiedis and Flea talk about the Peppers’ benchmark album

Is it possible that two of the most influential albums in alternative rock, the Red Hot Chili PeppersBlood Sugar Sex Magik and Nirvana’s Nevermind, arrived to ‘90s-fashioned cassette players and boom-boxes on the same day? It’s true, as last Saturday (Sept. 24) marked the anniversary of both alt-rock benchmarks. With the hoopla surrounding Nevermind’s 20th anniversary (which was rightfully due, we might add), it seems the Peppers’ anniversary got a bit overshadowed. Truth be told, Magik is one of the best albums the Peppers will ever make.

The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ fifth LP, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, was the band’s second set with guitarist John Frusciante and first with mega-producer Rick Rubin. But, frontman Anthony Kiedis says Magik almost never happened. Before Rubin agreed to work with the Peppers, the guys had to grow up and get serious.

“In 1985-86, Rick came to visit us in our basement with a couple of the Beastie Boys. He watched us rehearse for maybe 10 or 15 minutes… We were very dysfunctional — fighting and playing at the same time — and he kind of slipped away without us noticing,” Kiedis told the UK’s Telegraph.

“A few years later, once we’d worked out those behavioral kinks, he was re-drawn to us, and thank God he was,” he added. “He caught us on an upswing, and he furthered that by doing what hadn’t really happened prior to that — he just let us be ourselves.”

Bass dangler Flea added that the album captured the fun, exciting essence of the Peppers at the time. “With that album, we really grew into being the band that we always wanted to be,” he told Guitar World. “It was like we took what was great about us and just gave a lot more depth to the instruments and structure. The album really captured a space and a time that was exciting and fun.”

Blood Sugar Sex Magik was one big hit-maker, producing chart-toppers “Give It Away,”  “Under the Bridge,”  “Suck My Kiss” and “Breaking the Girl” and taking the Peppers from underground sensations to household names. The Peppers’ latest album, I’m With You, dropped last month, and Kiedis’ mom even made special buttons for the occasion.


Reminisce With the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Classic Video for, ‘Under the Bridge’:

Cat Badra
Posted by Cat Badra | Alternative, Music, Rock News

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