Josh Klinghoffer Explains What He Disliked About Red Hot Chili Peppers, Reveals How They Treated Him

John Frusciante’s return to Red Hot Chili Peppers wasn’t much of a surprise. Near the very end of 2019, the band announced the return of the classic lineup while also mentioning Josh Klinghoffer who was automatically ousted. Unfortunately for Josh, he didn’t have much say in the matter. Nonetheless, both fans and the band members still cherish the time he had with them.

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Lollapalooza Chile 2018 FULL SHOW [1080p]

It’s also obvious that Josh is going to be asked about this a lot. While talking to Guitar World, he looked back on that era and how it all ended. He said:

“Obviously, it’s sad when something is taken from you. I did a perfect 10 years with them, but for as much as I love those guys and loved playing with them, it was also enormously stifling creatively.

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Dark Necessities [Official Music Video]

“They’re an established band with an established sound, and I learned over time how little deviating from that was possible.” 

Pressed further on this issue, Josh adds:

“When I first joined, I wouldn’t use certain chords when I was writing if they sounded like something John would play. Or if it sounded like a choice they would have made on their last album, I purposely went the other way.” 

He continued:

“I thought I was doing a good job of writing music with them, but it wound up not kind of becoming part of my story, or if it is part of my story with them, it’s a small part. As much as I thought they were up for experimentation, they generally stayed in their own lane.” 

Josh started his tenure in Red Hot Chili Peppers as a touring guitarist back in 2007. In 2009, they accepted him as a permanent member, ultimately recording two albums with them. These are 2011’s “I’m With You” and 2016’s “The Getaway.”

Photo: Sven Mandel (Red Hot Chili Peppers – Rock am Ring 2016 -2016156230903 2016-06-04 Rock am Ring – Sven – 1D X MK II – 0313 – AK8I1261 mod), Cancha General (Red Hot Chili Peppers – Lollapalooza Chile 2014 (13678783843))

  • David Slavkovic

    David always planned for music to be nothing more than a hobby. However, after a short career as an agricultural engineer he ended up news editor at KillerGuitarRigs, senior editor at, as well as a freelance contributor to online magazines such as GuitaristNextdoor and brands like Sam Ash.

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