Counting Chili Peppers’ Guitarists

Quick:  name everyone who once played guitar for the Red Hot Chili Peppers.  Go!  Hillel Slovak was first but he left for a couple of years and was replaced by Jack Sherman.  But then Hillel decided he wanted to come back, so Jack was out.  

Then Hillel ODed and died, so DeWayne McKnight was brought in.  He didn’t last very long and was soon replaced by John Frusciante.  

John stayed with the Chilis for a couple of years before he quit and a dude named Zander Schloss filled in.  He was followed (briefly) by Arik Marshall and Jesse Tobias.  

Then Dave Navarro—who had nothing to do because Jane’s Addiction was dead at the time—joined up for five years.  

But he didn’t really like the gig and his departure coincided with the return of John Frusciante.  He stayed on until 2009 when he was replaced by Josh Klinghoffer, who is the current guy.  If you’re counting, that’s almost 30 years of Chili Peppers and nine guitarists—and two of those guys joined up twice!

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

4 thoughts on “Counting Chili Peppers’ Guitarists

  • October 28, 2011 at 11:44 pm

    Zander was in this tremendous band called Thelonuis Monster. TM ran in the same circles as RHCP in the early days.

  • October 29, 2011 at 12:13 am

    And not to mention Circle Jerks…

  • March 31, 2012 at 8:14 pm

    I was wondering if you knew why John Frusciante left again? I was so disapointed to see he wasn't in the band anymore.

  • July 17, 2013 at 11:40 pm

    Two-part trivia here:

    In the Simpsons episode featuring the RHCP ("Krusty Gets Kancelled"), the guitarist was Arik Marshall (at least according to the credits).

    Then again, according to the credits, Julie Kavner is in that episode – except she isn't. Marge doesn't say a single thing in that episode (nor do any of her other characters).


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