The Fruciante era kicks into high gear

Jack Vermuth, Special to the Chanticleer


After the hotly debated One Hot Minute would come one of RHCP’s biggest and best albums Californication. This album would include some of my favorite RHCP songs such as “Around the World, “Scar Tissue,” and “Otherside” Whereas Blood Sugar Sex Magik would serve as a preamble to the “Frusciante Era” of RHCP, Califonication would mark the rise to power of this funk rock train that has never had and never will have any brakes, and the true beginning of the “Frusciante Era.” With Frusciante rejoining after completing drug rehabilitation on top of Navarro being fired from the band after the “BSSM” tour due to creative differences. Californication marks a point when RHCP begins to mesh and become a truly creative powerhouse with driving guitars, moving and pumping bass lines, groovy drums, and powerful vocals and lyrics that sold over 15 million copies worldwide.

Following Californication, and a two year long international tour RHCP would together to form the album that is By the Way. This album includes excellent tracks such as “By the Way,” “The Zephyr Song,” and of course “Can’t Stop.” The album would go on to reach number two on the billboard charts, and selling 8 million copies worldwide. By the Way marks a departure from the funk and punk styles of previous RHCP albums, and a shift towards a more melodic, deliberate, and stylistic approach. Kiedis has gone on record several times crediting Frusciante with writing a majority of the parts on the album including drum parts, vocal melodies, and bass lines. This shift would mark a major change in the styling of RHCP that remains in apparent in the albums following.

Fresh off the tour for By the Way and riding the coattails of Californication, no one thought that RHCP could get any bigger or do anything better. Then Stadium Arcadium (Stadium) happened. There are too many perfect tracks on Stadium to list, but if I must, the best are “Dani California,” “Snow (Hey Oh),” “Hard to Concentrate,” “Charlie,” “Slow Cheetah,” the list goes on and on and on. Stadium would be RHCP’s first album to debut at number one, and not only did it remain at number one for 14 weeks, it was also nominated for SEVEN Grammy’s. It would win five of the seven. This  38 track, RHCP opus would forever go on to touch hearts and minds, and is still considered their best album. However, after the lifecycle and tour of Stadium RHCP would take a three year hiatus during which John Frusciante would leave the band for the second and final time in 2009.

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