Why Flea Removed ‘Best Parts’ From His Memoir
The book, which is on sale now, ends just as the band is beginning – another important decision for the author, who felt the story should be about him and not his success. “Fame ain’t worth shit,” he writes at one point.
“I knew that no matter how skilled of a writer or clumsy of a writer I would be, [if] I just wrote the best I could, the book would only have any value at all … if I was completely honest,” Flea told Forbes in a new interview. “And in the editing of it, I took out a lot of stories that were great stories, they're wild and entertaining, and I wrote them well, and they're some of my best parts.
“But I realized I have this in for shock value. And I don't want to go for shock value just for shock value. Everything has to be something that really shaped me. And it has to be honest and it has to be something that made me who I am, like the insecurity of being a kid who wet his bed until he was 11 years old, or my dysfunction in relationships, or my acting like an obnoxious asshole thinking I was being funny. “
Flea recalled he originally wrote chapters that ran up to 2000, but then decided to stop at 1983, presenting the possibility of a second volume. “To me, all that stuff leading up to the band explains the band, at least from my perspective, more than had I gone through every recording process and every band argument,” he explained.
“But there's all this other stuff too, and I'm so still in the process of this book, talking about it, it coming out, dealing with all the vulnerability of putting it out, it's a crazy fucking feeling. But I just don't know. I need to process it, get through it and then decide what I'm going to do. Cause I was certain I was going to do it, and right now, to be completely honest, I'm on the fence.”
The bassist, who got married earlier this month, accepted that he wouldn’t have been able to tie the knot if he hadn’t explored his own history in the memoir. “The writing of the book from beginning to end wasn't just writing down stories, it was me trying to understand shit that happened, It was me trying to make sense of myself,” he said. “Without doubt, it was a transformative process for me, learning about myself and writing about myself and the vulnerability of sharing it with the world in the hopes my loneliness will help make other people feel less lonely.
“But I definitely think it had a huge part in more recent personal growth for me, and being ready for a love that I'm so grateful to be able to share with my wife. … You don't get to have that kind of relationship until you're ready, because there is no faking it.”