‘What Am I Doing In The Chilis?’
Josh Klinghoffer admits he’ll probably always feel like the new guy in the Red Hot Chili Peppers – and reveals there’s one song they’re don’t play live because he can’t do it.
Josh Klinghoffer admits he’ll never be John Frusciante – and he doesn’t want to be.
The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ latest addition believes he has to be his own man and he can only hope fans will accept him.
And he admits there’s one song the band haven’t played live despite regular requests because he can’t do it justice.
Klinghoffer joined the Chilis in 2009 after Frusciante refused to return following their two-year hiatus, and says he’s been welcomed with open arms.
He tells Music Radar: “I’ll probably always feel like the new guy to a certain degree. They’ve gone out of their way to make me feel – and I do – one hundred percent part of the band. But there will always be an aspect of, ‘What the fuck am I doing here?’”
But he suspects drummer Chad Smith might sometimes experience similar feelings due to the strength of the relationship between singer Anthony Kiedis and bassist Flea.
“When you go up against the connection it’s hard not to recognise how much like brothers and a family they are,” he explains. “At the same time, they’re very all-inclusive. For me to come in, even though I’ve been around them and have played with them, you can’t make up for that time.” But he emphasises: “I really do feel like this is a band.”
Klinghoffer feels he’s learned lessons from following in Frusciante’s footsteps. “I’ll never be him. I can never be another person. I can only be and hopefully people will like it.
“It’s really been highlighted and accentuated: just be free and be yourself. That’s the lesson I’ve learned. That’s what I’m reminded of every time I play with them.”
The guitarist knows he has more to learn – including the No.1 single Snow from 2006 album Stadium Arcadium.
He says: “I remember being in England at the same time they were, and it was when Stadium came out. I was hanging out when they were playing something for the BBC. They started playing the song and I was like, ‘Fucking hell – no way am I ever going to be able to play that and sing that backup part… and thank God I will never have to.’
“Cut to now, and because that song was a hit, a couple of people, and one of our managers especially, are like, ‘Where’s that song?’ It’s just because I feel I haven’t nailed it. Not so much the guitar part but the guitar part and the background vocal at the same time. It feels so much like John.
“I guess I should be sitting in front of my stereo playing it 100 times a day. I’ve played it twice today already. It still feels like an exercise – but when it’s ready, when it’s natural, it’ll happen.”