October 16, 1962

oct16-2On this day in 1962, Flea (Michael Peter Balzary) was born in Melbourne, Australia.

Flea’s family moved to America in 1967 and settled in Rye, New York. Flea’s parents soon divorced and a permanent move to California with his mother and stepfather would introduce young Flea to his stepfather’s circle of musician friends. Flea joined in on their jam sessions, though in those days he enjoyed jazz music and was an avid trumpet player.

When it came time for academics, Flea attended Fairfax High School in Los Angeles where he met Anthony Kiedis. Flea was soon introduced to rock and punk music, and a friend Hillel Slovak taught Flea to play bass. Hillel then asked Flea to join his band; the band that would ultimately become the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

When it comes to the world of music and bass players, Flea is regarded as one of the greatest; to say he is unique in style and showmanship would be an understatement.

Flea has performed on over 40 different artist’s records, playing the trumpet on Jane’s Addiction’s Nothing’s Shocking, the bass on Young MC’s Stone Cold Rhymin’ (and also appeared in the music video for ‘Bust a Move’ wearing his trademark stuffed animal pants). He has collaborated with everyone from Johnny Cash to Tom Waits and managed to record more than 50 movie soundtracks, 10 Red Hot Chili Peppers studio albums and two solo records.

Flea additionally took an interest in acting and over the years his filmography has grown quite vast. He has more 30 films to his credit for portraying a character and a whopping 77 for appearing as himself.

Flea has been married twice and has two daughters.

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