Published Jan 23, 2020Last month, Red Hot Chili Peppers suddenly swapped guitarists, as Josh Klinghoffer exited and classic-era member John Frusciante rejoined. The exact details of the changeover were unclear, but now Klinghoffer has spoken out and revealed that he was fired.
During an appearance on the WTF with Marc Maron podcast, Klinghoffer explained that he was let go after Frusciante reached out to singer Anthony Kiedis and began jamming with bassist Flea.
"It's pretty simple, and there's no animosity," Klinghoffer said. "The explanation is that John would like to come back and has rekindled a relationship with the band or with Flea, musically, for the last little while."
Klinghoffer said that "it comes down to the history," and added, "It's absolutely John's place to be in that band. So that's why I'm happy for him, I'm happy that he's back with them."
The entire band were apparently present for the firing, which took place in person.
According to Klinghoffer: "It was really sweet. I rode my bike over, 'cause Flea is living really close to me at the moment. They just said, 'We'll get right to it. We've decided to ask John to come back to the band.' And I just sat there quiet for a second and I said, 'I'm not surprised.' And the only thing I could think to say was, 'I wish I could have done something with you guys, musically or creatively, that would have made this an absolute impossibility.'"
Frusciante and Klinghoffer used to be close friends and collaborators, but the pair apparently hadn't been in touch for the entire decade that Klinghoffer spent as a member of RHCP. That changed back in October, when Frusciante attended Flea's wedding.
"I hadn't spoken to him, but I saw him at Flea's wedding. He looked like he was in a really great place," Klinghoffer said.
He noted that Frusciante recently started playing guitar again after an extended period of focusing on electronic music and stepping away from releasing music entirely.
Klinghoffer added that he and the band had been writing a new album for over a year, but that it wasn't recorded, and those new songs were "just going to go away I guess."
Listen to the podcast appearance below.
RHCP have a few live dates planned in the coming months. Drummer Chad Smith recently revealed that they're working on a new album with Frusciante.