Brendan’s Death Song - Red Hot Chili Peppers
Anthony Kiedis breaks down the making of the Red Hot Chili Pepper’s Best track from new album, I’m With You.
“Brendan Mullen is a guy who came to Hollywood from the UK in the mid-‘70s and helped start the punk rock scene in LA. He ran a club called the Masque, which was technically the first punk rock club in LA, He went on to be the booker for Club Lingerie on Sunset Strip- a very prominent venue in the ‘80s. His thing was promoting music.”
“In 1983 Flea and I spent our last dime recording a demo tape. We barged into Club Lingerie in the middle of the day and found Brendan. He listened to our tape on our boom box and Flea and I danced around wildly to convey the sort of energy we were bringing to the table. Brendan offered us a slot opening up for Bad Brains- who at that point were the kings of the scene. We took that gig and started a friendship with Brendan that continued until he died 18 months ago. That was in the middle of him doing a coffee table book [The Red Hot Chili Peppers: An Oral/Visual History]”.
“Brendan happened to die on the very first day we were going to rehearse with Josh Klinghoffer. I was driving from home up over the Santa Monica Mountains when I got a text saying that Brendan had died of a massive stroke- on his birthday. When I got to rehearsal I delivered the news to my band that we had just lost this beautiful person. And then we started playing without really talking. Probably the second thing that came out of that jam was the basis for Brendan’s Death Song.”
“We got a good recording of it with Rick [Rubin]. It does have a sort of death march feel to it, but the song is more a celebration than a bummer. My favourite part of the song came much later-which is the bridge section, where it gets quite dark there for a moment and there’s this feeling of falling into the unknown abyss, of dying. So, yes, we lost a good man, but he had a very full life.”
From the September 2011 issue of Q Magazine.
CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL RHCP INTERVIEW!