Ousted Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist Josh Klinghoffer thought the band reuniting with producer Rick Rubin was a mistake. Klinghoffer, who landed a plum gig as Pearl Jam‘s supplemental side player, spoke with VW Music and admitted, “I’m incredibly conflicted about my output with that band because I feel like, in both circumstances, producers got in the way of us truly making great music or a great record. I like almost all of the songs that we wrote together, but seldom did we capture them in the best way. I will say that in the case of (the) I’m With You (album), I feel Rick Rubin was way more a hindrance than a help. He told me once, ‘I just want to help the songs be the best they can be.’ I should’ve said, ‘Well, then get your driver to come and get you.'”

When pressed about the challenges with taking the stage with Pearl Jam night after night, Klinghoffer answered: “I face a constant risk of smiling too much (laughs). I sometimes allow my 12-year-old self to run away with my face. The challenges these days are more just little things like doing my part of a song that doesn’t get played very often. Sometimes, for me, it’s really more about muscle memory, and we’ll do a song once a tour, and I always feel like I can do my bit just a little better. But that’s nothing. Sometimes it feels not so much like a challenge, but an obstacle, how little I can see Matt Cameron when I’m playing a drum part with him, but again. . . minor issues.”


In 2019, Red Hot Chil Peppers fired the band’s guitarist for a decade — Josh Klinghoffer — upon John Frusciante‘s return to the band.

Josh Klinghoffer, who started out as John Frusciante’s guitar tech, is featured on the band’s releases:

  • I’m With You (2011)
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers Live: I’m With You (2011)
  • “Official Bootlegs” (2011 – 2018)
  • 2011 Live EP (2012)
  • Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Covers EP (2012)
  • I’m With You Sessions (2012 – 2013)
  • I’m Beside You (2013)
  • The Getaway (2016)
  • Live In Paris EP (2016)

CHECK IT OUT: Josh Klinghoffer Top 5 Solos: