Posted on June 15, 2014 by Flea
Originally posted on BK Nation
I have had a powerful paternal instinct since I was a kid. I wanted to be a dad when I had no business being one. Luckily my teenage girlfriend was much more sensible than me in that regard. In fact, it could easily be sensibly argued that I was completely unprepared and too immature to be a dad when I had my first child at the age of 25 (going on 15 emotionally). But man, I always loved the idea of having kids; they seemed like so much fun, partly, it occurs to me, just because I could get away with it, to create my own world independent of the cruelness that seemed so prevalent out there.
When one hears about someone else having a baby, it is such a happy thing, and congratulations and well wishes around. But, having your own baby is the most magical, shockingly unbelievable miracle that ever occurred in the universe.
When Clara was born in 1988, it was the most glorious moment of my life. I rose above the birthing scene and looked down at her beautiful and totally spent mama radiating love, and me, weeping, scissors in hand cutting the umbilical cord. Driving home with that little swaddling babe was the greatest drive of my life. Never before did I feel such a profound sense of purpose. Everything I did in my life from then on became a richer experience. Every note that I played, every basketball I that bounced, every book that I read, every prayer that I offered, I did to nurture myself inside and out, so that I might be a better parent for her. I quit doing drugs and began the painful journey of working through my own fears so that I might be a kinder, stronger, more conscious person. Clara gave me everything.
Being a father offers the greatest opportunity to love…the chance to learn what it is to be selfless, and to reap the greatest rewards from your work. The greatest parenting advice that I ever got was from the great Maya Angelou, who said “your only responsibility as a parent is to see the sun rise and set every time your child walks into the room.”
As men, we define ourselves by the quality of our parenting. In no other way are our weaknesses and strengths more apparent. I have been a great, loving, nurturing, inspiring dad, and I have failed miserably as a dad many times and been a short-tempered, selfish jerk. But no matter what, nothing is more important to me, and I will continue strive to get better at it.
My relationship with my own father has been interesting. He left when I was six years old and went to live in another country. My mother married a new man –a complicated guy — who had a serious substance-abuse problem and was not very available to be a parent. As a result there was never really a dad around, and I ran wild in the street getting into all kinds of craziness. I am grateful for everything exactly as it is and wouldn’t trade it for any other life, but I definitely did not experience any kind of a close son/father relationship.
This situation worked for me and against me with my own fathering skills. In one way I have had no role model to study, but in a deeply positive way, I have been even more determined to give my kids everything that I never had, to love them and to provide them with every opportunity to allow their spirits to soar.
My emptiness taught me what I believe to be the cure for that sense of desperation and of longing–I am full of love for both of my fathers. Over time, I developed a loving relationship with my real dad. We got to know each other when I was in my 30s. My stepfather, who passed away, gave me the gift of music, and loved me the best that he knew how, given his own circumstances. Though my childhood was without parental guidance, it gave me an opportunity to go my own way.
When my oldest daughter was 17 years old — and preparing to go to college — I had another little girl named Sunny. It has been the most amazing experience to raise up one little whippersnapper, have her grow up and leave the nest (not really), and then segue right into another little girl. I learned a lot the first time around, and I think I am a little better at being a present papa. But, it’s not about me, it’s about her. Every morning when I get up bleary-eyed and stumble into the kitchen to make her breakfast, and tell her “for crying out loud stop fooling around and go brush your teeth!” and we do our morning dance and drive to school listening to the terrible pop music that she likes, I know in the depths of my being, that nothing ever could make me happier. I am in awe of my kids, and to all the other papas out there I say, “Hooray.”
Posted on September 08, 2013 by Josh
Just a quick note as I've been informed that "Bob and the Monster," the wonderful film about my wonderful friend Bob Forrest, has finally been released. I've seen this film in a few different forms over the past few years and it always brings a smile to my face.
Conratulations to Keirda, Rick, Bob, and everyone else involved in getting this story out.
To download the movie on iTunes, please click here.
Posted on July 18, 2013 by Josh
This morning I awoke to an email from a friend asking me to help call attention to the fact that Radio Helsinki was in danger of being shut down. I have been listening to it now for the past half and hour or so, been looking at old playlists and have to say that it'd be a crying shame if a place where such a beautiful array of music was silenced. Anything anyone can do to help save this station, please do. Look at this... Pretty great.
TEENAGE FANCLUB: Everything flows
The Flaming Groovies: Shake Some Action
Shumen JIMI: Tokyo Story
BLACK FLAG: police story
FLIPPER: Sex Bomb
YELLO: I Love You
AESOP ROCK: Leisure Force
SCOTT WALKER: Seventh Seal
Vibravoid: poupee de sire
Vibravoid: Listen, Can not you hear
LUCKY DRAGONS: Ivy Girl
THE AZTEC MYSTIC: Jaguar
FUCK BUTTONS: Surf Solar
Ratto AND Lehtisalo: Speed ??of light (FinTeng version)
SOLANGE: Losing You
MISFITS: Hybrid Moments
Fugazi: waiting room
TV ON THE RADIO: Wolf Like Me
ALICE COLTRANE: Prema
SUNN O))): Alice
THIN LIZZY: Little Girl In Bloom
"THE WICKER MAN" MAGNET: Willows Song
They just played Quasi! One of my favourite bands. Quasi! I love Quasi and I love Radio Helsinki! Please help keep this around to make all of our lives better.
Posted on June 22, 2013 by Josh
Good morning. Up early. Very little sleep. Just wanted to thank the people of Dover, or anyone present at the Firefly Festival last night. We all had a lot of fun!
Sometimes a little time away from something helps remind one how precious it is.
Have a wonderful summer everyone. Off to Sacramento...
Posted on April 16, 2013 by Josh
After blackening a q-tip with the desert sand from last night, I used my ears to help Andrew mix the final song for the extra songs from the 'I'm With You' sessions. I'd like to apologize for getting a bit behind schedule with these releases. After my foot injury, it was hard to get off my arse during our breaks from tour. I apologize. I'd like to take a moment and publicly thank Andrew Scheps for all of his wonderful work on these songs. It's been a wonderful experience that I'm very grateful for. Thank you to Andrew…and everyone who worked on 'I'm With You.'
As there is one more show in the 'I'm With You' tour, I'd also like to thank everyone, everywhere who came to see us play. It's an honour for me.
Oh, and thank you Debbie for all the tea and treats!
Posted on April 09, 2013 by Josh
Look for some friends and I in the DJ booth tonight at the Fonda.
Posted on February 09, 2013 by Josh
This is a small note to thank everyone who shared an evening with us in New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa.
We all had an mesmerizing time and will never forget all the incredible faces we saw over the past month. People in the front row at festivals, Kangaroos, people in the street, Lions, Elephants and Impala running in the bush, other musicians backstage, friends, family...Die Antwoord! The only thing that helps remind that there is good things happening out there…smiles. I've said it before, but thank you for them.
Lots of love and gratitude…
Is it weird that I've listened to 'Eternal Flame' by the Bangels 7 times this morning?
Posted on November 02, 2012 by Josh
I tried. I practised, I got up there...my brian froze.
What a great song.
Posted on September 30, 2012 by Josh
It's been quite a while since I popped in, said hello. I miss you. I guess that's a silly thing to say, because after all…I'm sitting by myself, typing. I'll tell you what I really miss…STANDING UP ON STAGE! People of the wonderful town of San Antonio, I tried my best, but tonight, more than ever, I really missed standing up. I couldn't get out of my head. I felt like I had a 5000lbs. anvil strapped to my leg. It was weighing me down. I miss running up to my bandmates…going crazy! Physically feeling one with my body. Being free up there. I want to thank you all for being so supportive of me and my foolish breaking of my poor little foot. The support and warm wishes I've received have been truly touching. Thank you. As I said onstage the night I broke my foot, anger doesn't get ya very far. I really can't wait to have both legs working.
Talk to you soon…
Posted on July 03, 2012 by Josh
Bern. What a beautiful city.
I want to thank all of you in attendance tonight for sticking with me. Some of you may've noticed me making funny faces and not moving as much onstage as I usually do (at the beginning of the show). Well, tonight, I played my first show with in-ear monitors. I've been a bit of a stubborn brat about making the switch out of fear that they would make me feel isolated from all of the wonderful people in the room, whether they be 2 feet or 200 feet from me. Well, I did it. I still find it a bit weird, but the best thing is...I heard my bandmates better and clearer. I was told that I sounded a lot clearer. I love everyone out on tour with us. What an amazing group of people they are!!!!!!!
And so, again, slight apologies for making weird faces at the little speakers in my ears. Things are good.
Bren. D'you know who's from Bern?
Posted on July 02, 2012 by Josh
Werchter!!! That was fun! Am I starting a bit of a habit? Nightly musical posts? It's a little difficult to wind down sometimes after doing what we had the good fortune of doing in Werchter tonight. I'm in Brussels, which I believe this band, The Names, were from. Enjoy...
Lots of love...
Posted on July 01, 2012 by Josh
Just wanted to say goodnight to all the people who filled the Stade de France tonight. It was an honour and humbling privilege to share the evening with you. All my love.
Sometimes I listen to a particular song over and over before bed. Sometimes it's this one…
Posted on June 25, 2012 by Josh
Posted on June 24, 2012 by Josh
It is so great to be back across the ocean. Last night's show at Knebworth was a truly magical experience! I want to thank every last one of you for making it so special. I must say, the feeling I get waking up in this country is unlike anything I can describe. I've always loved it over here and I am so grateful for the opportunity play blast music into the English air! Looking forward to doing it tonight...and every other night me and my friends get to blast music into any air!!!!! Thank you!
Here are some songs I've been listening to this morning as my sleep schedule is a bit off...
It Suits Me Well - Sandy Denny
Roy Harper - When And Old Cricketer Leaves The Crease
Late November - Sandy Denny
Free Will And Testament - Robert Wyatt
This Is Where I Belong - The Kinks
English Rose - The Jam
The Dark-Eyed Sailor - Steeleye Span
Also, this song just kills me...so sweet. Thank you England for all of these songs...
Lots of love...
Here we come Ireland...
Here we come Europe!!!
Posted on March 13, 2012 by Josh
Hello there! Good morning! Right now it's 8.56a in LA and the morning couldn't be more perfect. There is a particular kind of morning I prefer...and this is it. After having a bit of time on my hands, yesterday saw the return of a very special thing to my life. Today shall see it as well. Making music with your friends is an unbelievable thing. A feeling you can't find anywhere else...for me.
After having such a joyous day, as I lay my head down to sleep, I had a gander at a video for the song "Did I Let You Know" done by some wonderful people in Brazil. I just wanted to say that the smiles on all of those beautiful faces and the love that is very clear throughout that video made me a very, very happy camper. Someone should send that video to the tourist board as an advert for the incredible capacity for love and happiness the people of Brazil have. I just wanted to thank everyone who took part in that for making such a special song for me even more special. The smiles I see in that video are priceless tokens of affection. Wow, look what you making me sound like!!!
I'll have to get Mauro to translate it for me, but this I do know...obrigado! OBRIGADO!!!!!!!!!
Posted on January 02, 2012 by Flea
Hello men and women and boys and girls and all manner of animal and fish.
We are having this break right now and it is really good for us, Ahhhhhhhhhhh....reeeeeeelaaxxxxx. We just toured for about 5 months, and a little battery recharging is in order. Befre the tour started we spent a solid year, working in a new Josh Klinghoffer, writing, recording, doing press, all non stop, it is great to stop for a minute. Being in the ocean is the greatest thing, the waves flowing in and out , up and down, getting in touch with the world breathing like that fills me with the power. I love to sweat blood and truth at every show, or not play at all, as anyone has seen us knows (i hope), and having this down time, man, i am getting raring to go for when we start the u.s. legs of this tour in a couple of weeks.
We are gonna be home in a couple of days and I am excited about that. I am thinking about my studio, all the instruments in it, the recording equipment, and it seems ike paradise to me. I just wanna play and write, absorb my days completely into music. Actually, I have had a hard time letting go and just being on vacation, I have such a burning desire to get in that studio, but some surfing is straightening me out, forcing me to calm down. As Marisa Pouw used to say to me in a matronly voice, "settle down little fighter".
For all the people who follow me on twitter, I'm sorry about all the basketball tweets I just cant help it, basketball is very emotional for me, Just like music. Maybe I should just start a basketball blog and keep it separate from everything else.
Posted on January 01, 2012 by Josh
I would just like to wish everyone the happiest of New Years.
Thank you ALL for everything.
Posted on December 11, 2011 by Josh
So I tried singing one of my favourite songs last night in Torino. It's a song by an amazing Italian singer called Mina. The song is called Io sono quel che sono. I'm trying, for the first time to "embed media." It probably won't work because it's me doing it, but I think everybody should hear this incredible song. My version last night went a bit funny. My voice got a little tense toward the end. Baby steps...
I love Italy.
Posted on December 07, 2011 by Flea
We are getting inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.I am not usually one to get to excited about awards or accolades, but about this one I am very excited indeed.
Our band is really riding a high right now. We are out on the road, playing some of best shows we have ever done. We are establishing a new language with Josh and there is a feeling of hope and potential in what we are doing that is really inspiring to us. Each time we step out on the stage it feels so creative and vibrant, we are really having a blast playing the shows and it fills my days with meaning. I feel an infinite energy from what we are doing and looking forward to taking this togetherness we are forging out on tour, and getting in the studio and making new music. Feels like we are growing like a new born baby, and that is best feeling that I can have ever have in our band.
So hearing this news about the hall of fame now really seems like it has extra significance for me. To be recognized this way seems especially full and profound. It makes me think about Hillel Slovak, without whom we would have never existed, and who created with us the foundation of our sound. He directly influences everything we have ever done. What he did with us in our early years is the blueprint of what we are. This would have meant a lot to him, and I love him so much. And of course, the mighty Jack Irons, our other founding member, who fortunately, is here to enjoy this moment with us.
It also makes me think of something I think of everyday anyways. Of John Frusciante, the virtuoso musician and songwriter who gave so much to our band. Without him, we would not be going to the hall of fame. He wrote countless great things with us, played an infinite amount of stunning things, and taught us how to be a great band. He helped lift us to a much higher level, he is the greatest. We connected deeply for many years, and he left our band with many gifts.
I am truly grateful for this honor. To our fans, who have supported us for all these years, given us purpose, and wildly energized us night after night, thank you.
Posted on December 06, 2011 by Flea
Sitting here in my hotel room in Munich. It is a really funny hotel room, weird orange, yellow and brown colors in the rug and walls. A spiral staircase that goes up to the bedroom. Kind of a funny surrealish spinal tap moment me sitting here listening to bad music coming out of the television, too lazy to get my boom box out of its case and put on something decent. wait hold on, i gotta turn this garbage off its doing something bad to my soul.
aaaahhhh this silence is so much better.
So we were home for a week and then headed back to Europe for another couple of weeks before the christmas break. While we were home, the day before we left, we made a video for our song 'Look Around'. It was such a fun experience, truly liberating and wild feeling for me, I have high hopes for the thing, haven't seen the footage yet though.
I am just in the final pages of the book 'Anna Karenina' by Leo Tolstoy, it has been a long read that was a little arduous at times, adjusting my brain to the long passages written about a time that is hard to wrap my head around. But, I never gave up! And the final few chapters are truly riveting, tragic and sad and beautiful. As Joe Strummer said, "It's a sad and beautiful world". I'm not sure what I will read next, probably Jerry West's biography.'
Speaking of books, I heard that there is a movie just made of 'Midnight's Children', the book by Salman Rushdie. That is very exciting to me, I love the writing of Salman Rushdie. Also, someone just gave me a copy of a movie made of the book 'The Master and Margarita' by the transcendantly good writer Mikail Bulgakov. Can't wait to se it!!!!!!! It is 11 hours long i think! 11 hours of greatness I am psyched! It could be a terribly made film and I will still love it, the book is that amazing. But, I hear it is a well made movie.
God, I love sports. It seems for many people, sports and art are mutually exclusive things, which is hard for me to understand. I love seeing people reach for things, really yearn to take themselves to a higher level. It really seems the same to me, athletics, arts, academics.....I just dont really differentiate between the things, it all feels like human exression to me and totally the same. But, my point is that I am a televised sports fanatic. It is the only thing I watch on t.v. Basketball season is about to start, and as many of you probanly know already, I am an over the top unabashed freaky Laker fan. With great anticipation I await to dig in to the sumtuous feast that is the NBA season. When it clicks, and a team really plays together, it is a beautiful thing to behold.
I've never been bored a moment in my life. I've been delirious, I've been miserable, but I have never been bored, there's just too much stuff going on. I've also been ecstatically happy!
The other night when we arrived in Berlin, I took a walk and stumbled upon the holocaust memorial there. Man it was a heavy experience. It is made of thousands of concrete slabs, I think it is one for every Jew from Berline that was killed (not positive about that, it's what I was told). When you look at it from the street, it seems as though each concrete slab, which are rectangle or square shaped, are about 2 or 3 feet tall. But as you walk into it, the ground sinks down and you are surrounded by these monoliths that are like ten fet tall. Each one representing a tragic death. It really had a powerful effect on me. God bless those poor souls. Sending my love to them. It was late at night and I walked into the depth of the thing and really got lost in it. It is hard to comprehend that kind of cruelty, genocide. Man. It unbelievable what human beings are capable of. I read a while ago about the genocide that took place in Rawanda of the Tutsi people. It happened in the early nineties. A really great book called "We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families' by Phillip Gourevitch. That is a heavy book, but also really uplifting and inspiring. To hear of people who suffered the worst tortures that you can imagine, and yet retain their humanity, their love, it is amazing how great people can be in the face of the most malicious kind of evil. I highly reccomend that book. While I'm still on the subject of books, here's another one I reccomend, I was thinking about it today during our travel to Munich, about how much it inspired me and changed my life. My sister turned me on to it, it is about Haiti and an super cool guy who goes there to help out named Paul Farmer, and it is called 'Mountains Beyond Mountains' written by Tracy Kidder. It blew me away, and because of it I ended up in Haiti a few years after I read it. I really loved my trip to Haiti. Actually my trip was with some great guys who have an organization called 4real and you can look it up and see a film of the trip if you are interested.
Well it's 2:54 am and I'm gonna get into something else now.
Really, this tour is going so well, I'm so happy with the way we are playing, and more than that, overwhelmed with gratitude for all of you who come to our shows and rock out and really listen. You give me faith.