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Humanely

In: Film and Music

Submitted By humanely
Words 1965
Pages 8
Since I do not know John in person, I cannot guarantee that everything said here is 100% true. The only thing I can guarantee is that this is the most literate bio you can find, with proper capitalisation and mostly proper grammar. If I have said anything offensive, too private to be put here or untrue, please feel free to correct me and I will apologise and take if off. I love John too much to do anything disrespectful towards his persona and career.

John Anthony Frusciante was born in Queens, New York, USA on Thursday, 5th March 1970; as the first and only child of his father John and his mother Gail. His paternal grand-grandfather Generoso, from small town of Benevento in the region of Campania in southern Italy, moved to United States at the beginning of World War, with a single carton suitcase I to start a whole new life. Generoso and his son, John's grandfather, were playing fiddle and mandolin around New York restaurants for life. Influenced by his family's musical background, John's father was playing piano and studying at Julliard, but later on he decided to change his mind and study law. Right now, John Frusciante Sr. is a retired judge in Florida. On the other side, John's mother, Gail, is a very talented singer and she contributed the heavenly harmony vocals on RHCP's hit Under The Bridge accompanied by two friends. She is still involved in music and is a member of her church's choir.

John's parents later went separate ways and had more children in their other marriages. John's step-father, Laurence Berkley, is involved with martial arts and has released A SAMURAI WORKOUT DVD, which also features some of John's music. Mr. Berkley stated that he instilled discipline and cultural awareness in the lives of the five children he raised, amongst them John himself. At the same time, John consider him to have been a cool person to have around while he was growing up.

In his early childhood; John enjoyed playing with the family's pet cat and the little girl next door, to whom he was even giving his toys. He was also extremely creative from the day one, and often building igloos from small ice cubes. All of the family members' careers taken into consideration; his early interest in music was more than natural. He started playing guitar at the age of 6, but, as he said in one interview, he was was taught the beginning of Stairway To Heaven and stopped learning because his teacher could not show him the solo. The same year, his family moved to Arizona for a year and during that time, his mother and father divorced and John went with his mother to California. When he heard where they were going to move, he was very happy, because "he knew that all the good music is there".

As a boy of that age, John was interested in sports. He even played baseball for a short period time, as said in one interview, but the coach was making him feel bad all the time and that is actually how he'd written his first song, Fuck You To José - José being the coach in question. He was also interested in skateboarding and rock and punk bands, such as Germs, Black Flag, Fear, Sex Pistols. He started playing the guitar again around the age of 10. As he often says himself, he was able to play the whole of Sex Pistols Nevermind The Bollocks. In 5th grade, he had some kind of a band with his school friend Mandi and they were playing for friends and eating sandwiches with them, as said by Mandi himself early in 2004. At the age of 14, John recorded some of his first songs. Years later, he recalled that the name of one of those songs was Water Music.

John's life changed a lot at the age of 15 and it pretty much determined all of his future paths. That was the year he'd seen the Red Hot Chili Peppers play for the first time at the Variety Arts Center and they immediatelly became his favourite band, he was spending all of his money on concert tickets for him and his friends, so he could introduce more people to his favourites. But his music taste was wide, so, as he said in RHCP's Greatest Hits booklet, he was taping music from the radio and listening to it on his cassette recorder during the night, when he was supposed to be sleeping. He recalls having listened to Elton John's songs in his mom's car and having taped Donna Summer's I Feel Love; so there's no wonder that he is often choosing to cover these artists' songs dring his solo acts at RHCP concerts. And there is no doubt that, as said in the song Time Goes Back, radio indeed is his heart.

At the age of 16, John passed the graduation equivalence exam at the alternative type of highschool where he was relocated to after not having fit into a common one. He found a job and went on to live alone in LA with his friend Bill, having attended Musicians' Institute Of Technology at the same time. Supposedly he was practicing for 15 hours a day, then sleeping on the morning classes; so it is not clear what became of his studies there. Sometime in 1987/8, John went on an audition for a guitarist in Frank Zappa's band. He never actually made it to play there, he gave up before it was even his turn and went away. Many a time he sincerely admitted that he "wanted to become a rockstar, do drugs and get the girls", which he wouldn't have been able to do in Zappa's band. In the 2004 Mojo interview, he also revelaed, though apologising for having said that; that mr. Zappa wasn't acting nice and respectful to the people, so that discouraged him as well. He also knew Zappa's opinion on drugs, which was the opposite of his own as himself and Bill were snorting cocaine and even overdosing themselves pretty often to see how it feels like. Sometime in this period, John recorded the song A Fall Thru The Ground; which was featured on his well-known dark and mystical album Smile From The Streets You Hold, circa ten years later.

John on one of his first RHCP promo photosIn the middle of 1988, shortly before Red Hot Chili Peppers' original guitarist Hillel Slovak died of a heroin overdose, John jammed with D.H. Pelligro, former Dead Kennedys' drummer who was also jamming with RHCP. Somehow, John got to jam with Flea at D.H's garage soon after. Flea recorded bits of it on his 4-track-recorder and then invited Anthony Kiedis who was with his family in Michigan to come back and hear "the kid". Flea claimed that he never met somebody as excited to play ALL the time as John. Later, they've phoned him up and told him that he was in, shortly after Anthony saw him jam with Bob Forrest's band, Thelonious Monster. John often recalls that moment and once he said that he was so happy when he was accepted that there were footprints on the walls of his room, about 1.5 m high.

The young guitarist brought the band much energy and a new style of playing, having been slowly abandoning Hillel Slovak's style (he was often being called a Hillel clone back then!) and developing his own. The famous RHCP's instrumental Pretty Little Ditty was born during one of John and Flea's first jam sessions. The new RHCP had a short Turd Town Tour; with John and D.H, but later on D.H. was replaced with Chad Smith. The new band played their first show together on 09th October 1988 and soon afterwards they recorded their 4th album, Mother's Milk. Eventually, the album went gold, it even got onto the lower half of Billboard's list. After that, the guys travelled the world throughout their Positive Mental Octopus Tour. Bits of it are shown on a couple of videos/DVDs and the chemistry amongst the band members was undeniable. Even then, as someone who barely got out of the teenage years; John was playing perfectly and he always had his own little moments to sing some of his favourite songs, such as Elton John's Tiny Dancer. But on the other side, despite amazing playing which made him a virtuoso already at that age and pretty wise statements, he was joining Anthony Kiedis in girl-chasing and too much casual sex, smoking marijuana and joining the band in various photo sessions and concert encores with well...strategically placed socks. Many years later, John would admit that his most important goal was to fit in, as Anthony Kiedis and Flea had been his idols for a long time before he even joined the band. He was also disturbed by being called "Greenie", because of his youth and lack of experience. These things were set to cause serious problems, but as of that period of time, the problem was still unripe.

John during a photo session in 1991In May and June 1991, after having switched from EMI to Warner Brothers, the Red Hot Chili Peppers spent six weeks living in the old villa in Laurel Canyon, recording their new album, BloodSugarSexMagik. This unique recording process was documented in the video called Funky Monks. At its very beginning, 21-year-old John is sitting at the roof talking about the importance of the 4th dimension and, at the other point, he's talking about various sex-related things and posing for photographs. He seemed just like a regular guy of his age, having fun, but the collapse was yet to come. During the recording of BSSM, he wrote about 60% of the music and came up with many great ideas and improvements, including the brilliant, emotional guitar playing on I Could Have Lied. He also experimented with background falsettos, which later became his trademark. The album proved to be a hit and, according to many people, RHCP's best album to date. Now-famous French photographer and director Stephané Sendaoui directed the video for the first single, Give It Away; followed by Suck My Kiss; and the band started touring again. On this tour and on the concerts, John was acting much differently than before. He wasn't into goofing around and he wasn't enthusiastic about dressing down anymore; he was sometimes having panic attacks before the shows. One of the most memorable performances from this period of time was the 1992's RHCP performance on popular US TV show, Saturday Night Live; where John was screaming instead of singing harmony vocals on Under The Bridge; and during Stone Cold Bush; Anthony Kiedis kicked him with the microphone. As Chad Smith later explained, there were many moments he wanted to kick John's "little ass". In the interviews, John was saying that he can't wait for the tour to be over so he could go back home, be with his girlfriend and play clarinet. Also, many a time he would completely refuse to do an interview and he'd abruptly leave. The problem was now ripe and the bomb was undoubtedly about to explode. The last Red Hots' video John appeared in was Under The Bridge. On 07th May 1992, prior to the concert in Omiya, Japan; John said that he was quitting the band and he refused to play. After a short talk with the tour manager and the band, he agreed to play one more show and the next day he went back to Los Angeles. He asked the manager to issue a statement saying that he'd gone insane.…...

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