Best known as an integral member of one of the '80s and '90s most popular rock bands, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Flea (real name Michael Balzary) is widely regarded as one of rock's most talented bassists. By combining funk-style bass (à la Funkadelic) with psychedelic, punk, and hard rock, Balzary created an original playing style that has been copied numerous times. In fact, the "copy cat syndrome" got so out of hand that he refused to use his popular slap technique for the Peppers' massive 1991 hit Blood Sugar Sex Magik. Born on October 16, 1962 in Melbourne, Australia, Balzary and his family relocated to Los Angeles while he was still a youngster. Unlike other teenagers, Balzary's first musical love was jazz (not expected hard rock), as he concentrated on mastering the trumpet while attending Fairfax High School. It was around this ...
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