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Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea talks faking it at the Super Bowl

Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea talks faking it at the Super Bowl
February 5, 2014 JEREMY FEIST

Red Hot Chili Peppers

So if you haven’t heard by now, the big new thing people are getting unjustly outraged over is the Red Hot Chili Peppers mime-playing their instruments during the Super Bowl halftime show. Although considering how much of the post-game outrage was directed at Coca-Cola airing a commercial that acknowledged different cultures living in the U.S., you can probably take it all with a grain of salt. Anyway, Flea decided to take to the band’s site to address what happened …

When we were asked by the NFL and Bruno to play our song “Give It Away” at the Super Bowl, it was made clear to us that the vocals would be live, but the bass, drums, and guitar would be pre-recorded. I understand the NFL’s stance on this, given they only have a few minutes to set up the stage, there a zillion things that could go wrong and ruin the sound for the folks watching in the stadium and the t.v. viewers. There was not any room for argument on this, the NFL does not want to risk their show being botched by bad sound, period.

The Red Hot Chili Peppers stance on any sort of miming has been that we will absolutely not do it. The last time we did it (or tried to) was in the late 80’s, we were thrown off of The Top Of the Pops television program in the U.K. during rehearsals because we refused to mime properly, I played bass with my shoe, John played guitar atop Anthony’s shoulders, and we basically had a wrestling match onstage, making a mockery of the idea that it was a real live performance.

Look, it’s not like they went into this thinking “you know what would be awesome? If we just didn’t play our instruments, this one specific time where millions of people will be watching and scrutinizing us.” Are you kidding? They’ve been playing together for decades now, they know what they’re doing. I’m sure if they had their way, they’d play live, but guess what? They couldn’t have their way. Hell, I’m sure the producers would have loved to have them play live too, but sh!t happens. The important thing is they were still entertaining. And they temporarily distracted me from Bruno Mars. I’m sorry, I don’t know what it is about him, but … doesn’t he kind of remind you of a boston terrier?

Jeremy Feist is an (ahem) entertainer from Toronto, Canada. He writes, acts, and performs on stage, and has been a writer for Popbytes for almost three years now. He lives in Toronto with his boyfriend, his incredibly dumb but cute puppy, and his immortal cat.