Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea Could Be Your Classmate At USC

By Elena Torres

Ever since I was 13 and bought the Californication CD back in 1999, I've always found some kind of weird way to identify with the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Since then I've seen them in concert three times, bought every CD they've ever made, read Anthony Kiedis' autobiography "Scar Tissue" and done everything else that goes along with being a superfan.

This weekend I got to add another item to my list of personal RHCP milestones: I got to interview Flea. The band's bassist held a charity event for the Silverlake Conservatory of Music, and MTV News was invited to the shindig. The Chili Peppers are currently on hiatus, and we wanted to get an update on what Flea has been up to in the meantime. Of course I made sure to be there.

The occasion included jazz-music performances by students of the conservatory as well as teachers — one of which was Flea. Seeing him play jazz trumpet at a charity event full of happy families was definitely different than the last place I had seen him rocking out onstage.

When it was finally time for the interview, I was really nervous. (I mean, really, what do you say to one of the members of your favorite band of all time?) I was also pretty upset because I forgot my camera, but that died down fast. Flea was a really down-to-earth guy, happy to talk to us and clearly excited to be supporting a children's music program.

During our talk I found out Flea is currently studying music at the University of Southern California, which also happens to be where I went to college. I just missed him! If I had graduated a year later, there is a possibility that I would have been going to class with Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers!


Who would have thought that when I finally got to meet one of my favorite rock stars, we would end up talking about running through campus, trying to make it to class on time?