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Michael “Flea” Balzary, funk-rocking bassist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Atoms for Peace, has inked a publishing deal to tell his self-described “epic” tale of hard drugs, bohemia and funk-rock glory. Grand Central Publishing, a division of the Hachette Book Group, has acquired the rights to the as-yet-untitled memoir, written by Flea himself.
“Grand Central is thrilled to publish Flea’s memoir,” says executive editor Ben Greenberg. “Besides being a voracious reader, he is an utterly unique musician, thinker and creative force — whether with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Atoms for Peace or his Silverlake Conservatory, which fosters music education in Los Angeles. His story is epic.”
The book — with an audio edition also planned — will chronicle Flea’s unconventional childhood (including his move from a “normal” life in the New York suburbs to a “bohemian” lifestyle in Los Angeles with his jazz-playing stepfather), his adventures in the L.A. streets, his “sometimes complex friendship and collaboration” with Chili Peppers co-founder Anthony Kiedis and the overall “tumultuous creative journey” of the band, which formed in 1983. No release date has been set.
For Flea, who describes himself as “a literature geek,” writing his autobiography proved valuable — promising a lot more than the sleaze and degradation found in most tell-all rock tomes.
“I love literature deeply,” Flea says. “I view books as sacred things, and in writing my story, I’m going to do my best to honor the form that has played such a huge part in shaping who I am.”
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