Flea explains in an open letter that he was told to fake his performance since 'the NFL does not want to risk their show being botched by bad sound.'
Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea has reacted to accusations that he wasn't really playing his bass during the Super Bowl on Sunday, February 2. On Tuesday, the musician wrote an open letter, in which he admitted to faking his performance when his band took the stage to sing "Give It Away" with halftime headliner Bruno Mars.
Flea revealed that he mimed playing his instrument because he was told to do so. "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," he explained.
"I understand the NFL's stance on this, given they only have a few minutes to set up the stage, there a zillion things that could go wrong and ruin the sound for the folks watching in the stadium and the T.V. viewers. There was not any room for argument on this, the NFL does not want to risk their show being botched by bad sound, period," he added.
He later said that the "Red Hot Chili Peppers stance on any sort of miming has been that we will absolutely not do it," but continued that "we eventually decided, it was a surreal-like, once in a life time crazy thing to do and we would just have fun and do it."
During the Super Bowl, Flea appeared onstage shirtless while bringing his bass. Eagle-eyed spectators then spotted that his instrument wasn't even connected to his amp. "That guitar is plugged into NOTHING," Living Colour guitarist Vernon Reid voiced his suspicion on Twitter.