Flea (musician)

American-Australian bassist

Flea (Michael Peter Balzary) is an American bassist. He was born on October 16, 1962, in a suburb of Melbourne, Australia. He plays in the rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers. He has been with the band since its beginning in 1983 along with vocalist Anthony Kiedis. He is also known onstage for wearing bizarre, erotic costumes that largely appeal to the audience.[1][2]

Flea performing with Red Hot Chili Peppers in 2016
Flea performing with Red Hot Chili Peppers in 2016
Background information
Birth nameMichael Peter Balzary
Born (1962-10-16) October 16, 1962 (age 58)
Burwood, Melbourne, Australia
GenresFunk rock, experimental rock, punk rock, alternative rock, hardcore punk, jazz-funk
Occupation(s)Musician, actor
InstrumentsBass guitar, Guitar, trumpet, piano, vocals
Years active1982–present
LabelsWarner Bros. Records, EMI
Associated actsRed Hot Chili Peppers, Rocketjuice and The Moon, Atoms for Peace, Fear, Jane's Addiction, John Frusciante, What Is This?, P, The Mars Volta, River Phoenix

Flea is known for his unique bass style. He uses a wide range of bass guitar techniques, mainly popping and slapping and changing the speed of his tempo during songs and his quick improvisation. Flea is also a skilled trumpet player. Flea was the band member responsible for getting John Frusciante back into the band.[3][4]

In September 2009, it was announced that Flea would be rehearsing and playing with Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke, to perform some of Yorke's material.[3]

Flea is generally regarded by the public as the greatest rock bassist of all time, among similar artists such as Les Claypool and Victor Wooten.


  1. "VH1 Original TV Shows, Reality TV Shows". VH1. Retrieved 2020-09-27.
  2. "Flea & Haden". web.archive.org. 2008-01-29. Retrieved 2020-09-27.
  3. 3.0 3.1 www.bass-player.com http://www.bass-player.com/article/flea-haden/jun-06/20636. Retrieved 2020-09-27. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. "Rain Phoenix's LaunchLeft to Honor River Phoenix's 50th Birthday with Digital Singles Series". FLOOD. Retrieved 2020-09-27.