Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea talks about Super Bowl, Bernie Sanders

SAN FRANCISCO -- It's been a busy weekend mixed with football and politics for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and bassist Flea wouldn't have it any other way.

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"I'm always ready to play my heart out," Flea told The Associated Press backstage on Saturday night before the band took the stage at a San Francisco venue as part of the Super Bowl weekend festivities.

"I'm coming here, and I'm going to rock like a feral beast. Then I'm going to leave and go home," said Flea, whose offstage name is Michael Peter Balzary.

The show was part of the Direct TV SuperSaturday concert series. Run DMC opened for them at the Pier 70 stage, and then Snoop Dogg played DJ in between. Later, the rapper came out at the end of the Red Hot Chili Peppers set to perform with them.

It was the band's second night in a row, and they're not even on tour yet.

"Last night, we played for Bernie Sanders. That was really cool," Flea said of their "Feel the Bern" concert in Los Angeles for the presidential candidate.

"I'm really honoured and grateful to play for a presidential candidate that I actually believe in," Flea said.

The band performed the show at the Theater at the Ace Hotel and was willing to pay for the space. "It was like 30-grand to rent it . he wouldn't accept it because he only accepts private donations," Flea said.

The 53-year old musician also spoke of the criticism he has heard over his support of Sanders. "The big thing that I get on social media and stuff from people that don't like him is that he's a socialist, and socialism leads to communism. It's the stupidest thing I ever heard," Flea said.

"There's nothing wrong with wanting to become successful financially if that is what we want to dedicate our lives to. But some people don't have that opportunity to be successful if they choose to, because they don't get a chance . the playing field is rigged right now, and it's about evening the playing field."

He added: "I like to be a part of everyone pitching in and helping out with each other and knowing that we're all connected with empathy, compassion, and the strength of kindness."

The Red Hot Chili Peppers are currently in the studio finishing up their latest album, and the band plans a world tour to support it.

In 2014, the band performed with Bruno Mars at the Pepsi Halftime show.

But things will be different this year.

"I don't think I'm going to have the Super Bowl experience outside of my television set at home," Flea said. "I confess that I am going to be a sucker like everyone else and watch it. It should be a good football game."


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