For the sometimes manic but always thoughtful Flea, who was born Michael Balzary, the unexpected break provided him with time to learn how to play bebop music and train for the LA Marathon. (He finished with a time of 3:41:49, improving on his time of 3:53:00 from last year's marathon.) More importantly, he said it was an opportunity for introspection.
"I've come to a place in my life where I accept the difficult parts and embrace them," said Flea. "Whereas, before I was sort of trying to minimize the hard parts and maximize the fun parts. Now, I just want it all. I want the pain. I want the suffering, as well as the transcendent beauty of playing with my loved ones. I'm into it."
During the downtime, Flea also started writing new music with Klinghoffer, who joined the band in 2009 and co-wrote on "I'm With You." It's something that Kiedis expects to continue on their tour, which picked back up March 29 in Tampa, Fla., and is scheduled to continue through Nov. 1 in Milwaukee, Wis., with stops in the United States, Canada and Europe.
"In the past, we traditionally write, record, tour, take a little break, write, record, tour, you know, that whole thing," said Kiedis, who detailed the band's sorted history and his own struggles with addiction in his autobiography "Scar Tissue" in 2004. "This time, for whatever reason, it feels like new music is waiting in the wings to happen."
Follow AP Entertainment Writer Derrik J. Lang on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/derrikjlang .
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