Rick Rubin cried watching the Red Hot Chili Peppers' first rehearsal after reuniting with John Frusciante

[L-R] Rick Rubin and John Frusciante
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Rick Rubin has spoken about his experience watching the Red Hot Chili Peppers' first rehearsal after John Frusciante rejoined the band in 2019.

In a new episode of Chris Jericho's Talk is Jericho podcast (via MusicRadar), the legendary producer recalls being invited to the first Chilis rehearsal with Frusciante back in the fold, and shares an update on the band's forthcoming album, saying he and the band are “finishing” it right now.

“Frusciante's back in the band and it's unbelievable,” he says. “I [was invited to] the first rehearsal after John rejoined the band and it made me cry. It was so thrilling to see that group of people back together because they made such great music for so long together and it really hit me in an emotional way.” 

Rubin also offers a little on what we can expect the band's new album to sound like. When Jericho expresses his love of 2006's Stadium Arcadium, Rubin replies: “I think if you like Stadium Arcadium, you might like this.”

The producer also shares his opinion on what Frusciante does for the band's sound. “When Flea and John play together something magic happens,” he continues. “When Chad plays with Flea and John, something magic happens. When Anthony sings, based on what those guys play, it sounds like the Chili Peppers.

“There are some flavors on the new album and when it happens it's like, 'Oh my god – nobody sounds like that. It's so quintessentially Chili Peppers.” 

On the Chili Peppers' writing process, Rubin adds: “They have really good habits in that they write lots of songs which is something I think we developed from the beginning – this idea of overwriting.

“If there's going to be 12 songs on an album, they might write 50, they might write 100 to find those 12. They'll play them for me in rehearsal and we'll talk about them; about [each] song's strengths, weaknesses, how to make them better...

“I don't necessarily have the way to fix them, but I notice where the weakness are and just say, ‘This part going into this part doesn't sound so good – is there a better way to do it? Then they come up with a better way.”

While we've yet to hear new material from the reunited Chilis as a whole, John Frusciante teamed up with Flea earlier this year for a cover of Gang of Four's Not Great Men in tribute to late guitarist Andy Gill.

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at GuitarWorld.com from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.