The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea admitted in an open letter to fans on Tuesday that their performance during this year's Super Bowl half-time show was pre-recorded.
The band’s bassist, Flea, wrote in the open letter that he faked playing the bass guitar during his band’s hit song, “Give It Away.”
“When we were asked by the NFL and Bruno to play our song 'Give It Away' at the Super Bowl, it was made clear to us that the vocals would be live, but the bass, drums and guitar would be pre-recorded,” Flea wrote in the open letter.
Flea said the officials told the band that it would be difficult to perform the song live due to the time constraints. He said the band has always been against miming, but they eventually decided on doing this as it was “a surreal-like, once in a life-time crazy thing to do and we would just have fun and do it.”
The 51-year-old bassist said that he had consulted with other “musician friends for whom I have the utmost respect, and they all said they would do it if asked, that it was wild, trippy thing to do.”
He added that they could have plugged in their guitars, which would have avoided all the controversy but they chose not to pretend.
“It seemed like the realest thing to do in the circumstance," Flea said. "It was like making a music video in front of a gazillion people, except with live vocals, and only one chance to rock it. Our only thought was to bring the spirit of who we are to the people."
The fact that Flea had faked his bass playing came to light when Living Colour guitarist Vernon Reid tweeted: “That guitar is plugged into NOTHING.”
On Tuesday, Reid again wrote on his Twitter account: “@RedHotChili_BR @LivingColour @ChiliPeppers @flea333 Doesn't change the fact that the bass & guitar wasn't plugged in. Not their fault either.”