21 Best Red Hot Chili Peppers Songs (2024)

Best Red Hot Chili Peppers Songs

Formed in 1983 as a joke to play in a show, the Red Hot Chili Peppers has since then became one of the biggest rock bands in history

For more than three decades, this rock band has graced the world with their unique sound, which eventually earned them a spot in the Hall of Fame of rock and roll.

Here are some of the best Red Hot Chili Peppers songs of all time: 

Under the Bridge (Blood Sugar Sex Magik, 1992) 

At first, Anthony Kiedis was reluctant to share this song with his bandmates since this was a time where he felt distant with them. 

Thankfully, their producer convinced him, and the song went on to become one of the band’s greatest hits. 

In this song, Kiedis talks about the sadness and loneliness of drug use amid a soothing and melancholic music vibe. 


Californication (Californication, 1999) 

Anthony Kiedis revealed how the band struggled writing Californication as they had gone through several attempts before they could get the right flow. 

However, the band’s struggle was worth it as the song became one of the band’s biggest hits.  


Suck My Kiss (Blood Sugar Sex Magik, 1991) 

The third single in Blood Sugar Sex Magik, Suck My Kiss features the funk-punk and rapped verses the band was known for.

Here, Kiedis portrays a man madly in love with his significant other to the point that he needs to desperately keep on making out with them. 


Scar Tissue (Californication, 1999) 

Scar Tissue is one of the band’s saddest yet most beautiful songs, showing how the band has been through a lot and is now back with a clean and sober John Frusciante. 

The song’s hopeful lyrics and melancholy vibe deeply resonated with Kiedis that his autobiography has the same name. 


Higher Ground (Mother’s Milk, 1989) 

The Red Hot Chili Peppers were also known to cover songs with their version of Stevie Wonder’s iconic song being the best one yet. 

This cover became the band’s first radio achievement and has since then, a constant staple in their live shows. 


Can’t Stop (By the Way, 2002)

Can’t Stop is the band’s funkiest track on their 2002 album By the Way and features the band’s introspectiveness. 

Here, Kiedis talks about cultivating positive energy within despite the difficulty and his lyrics were inspired by his observations on everyday mundane things. 


Dani California (Stadium Arcadium, 2006)

Dani California is the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ most iconic and recognizable song with its jumpy guitars and twangy, swinging beats. 

The track talks about the mythical Dani, who is the embodiment of all the girls Kiedis has ever been with. 

If the Chili’s had a musical resume, Dani California would be a perfect choice. 


By the Way (By the Way single, 2002) 

The song’s heavy drums, rough bass and guitar topped off with an energetic and infectious chorus captures the Chili’s exuberant essence, making it the perfect Chili Peppers anthem. 

Kiedis revealed in an interview that the track was inspired by the 9/11 aftermath and revisited the mythical Dani. 


Snow (Hey Oh) (Stadium Arcadium, 2006) 

Snow is one of the band’s more optimistic approaches to addiction as Kiedis talks about the struggles with escaping and starting anew. 

With Kiedis’ dreamy vocals and the guitar riffs, the band emulated snowfall as they showcased their ability to sneak in heavy themes in mainstream music.  


Aeroplane (One Hot Minute, 1996) 

Aeroplane remains one of the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ most iconic songs, and for most 90s kids, this may be the first song they heard. 

With its jolly-sounding tune and introspective lyrics, Aeroplane is a renegade track from One Hot Minute. 

However, you cannot help but jam to it whenever it comes up in the playlist. 


Knock Me Down (Mother’s Milk, 1989) 

Knock Me Down becomes the band’s first transitional song as they began to delve into more introspective themes with their signature funk-pop sound. 

This song was another tribute to their former bandmate Hillel Slovak and here, John Frusciante talked about overcoming drug addiction prevalent in the “rockstar” lifestyle. 


Soul to Squeeze (Coneheads OST, 1993) 

This track was originally a part of the 1991 Blood Sugar Sugar Sex Magik; however, it became a B-side track to their single releases, Give it Away and Under the Bridge

Soul to Squeeze focuses on healing powers of kindness and the fleeting nature of depression, showcasing the Chili’s different sides of introspective melancholy with their cheerful smiles. 


Dark Necessities (The Getaway, 2016) 

Dark Necessities takes us back to the band’s funk-rock origins, featuring Josh Klinghoffer. 

With Klinghoffer’s dizzying guitar solo and the mesmerizing music video, this song made you feel all kinds of cool. 


Otherside (Californication, 1999) 

Anthony Kiedies has always been vocal and public about his struggles with drug addiction, often talking about them through songs. 

Otherside is another one of those songs and is dedicated to former bandmate Hillel Slovak. 

Here, Kiedis talks about how something you desperately want can also be the worst thing for you. 


Fortune Faded (single, 2003) 

When this song was released, the Red Hot Chili Peppers were slowly climbing their way to the peak of their fame. 

Fortune Faded features the band’s poignant lyrics and distinct sound coupled with Kiedis’ haunting vocals and an iconic music video, allowing them to ensnare the hearts of many.  


Goodbye Angels (The Getaway, 2017) 

Goodbye Angels were inspired by Anthony Kiedis’ relationship with model Helena Vestergaard. 

With its blasting bass and guitar solo, the song quickly became a fan favorite despite being overshadowed by Dark Necessities. 


My Friends (One Hot Minute, 1995) 

My Friends is one of the band’s best slow songs and is considered the highlight of Navarro’s involvement with the band. 


Easily (Californication, 1999) 

One of their most underrated songs, Easily shows how the band can also take on deep and meaningful songs. 


Subway To Venus (Mother’s Milk, 1989) 

The third track of Red Hot Chili Peppers Mother’s Milk, Subway to Venus features light and rapid guitar work coupled with an energetic funky bassline. 


Coffee Shop (One Hot Minute, 1995) 

Dave Navarro had a brief run with the band and was featured in their album, One Hot Minute. 

Despite their different music styles, Coffee Shop was one of the instances where Navarro’s unique psychedelic tune worked well with the band. 


I Could Have Lied (Blood Sugar Sex Magik, 1991) 

Vocalist Anthony Kiedis was involved with Sinead O’Conner, which inspired this melancholic acoustic ballad. 

In the past, Anthony Kiedis was involved with Sinead O’Conner and their break-up then inspired this melancholic acoustic ballad. 

In this song, Kiedis talks about lying about cheating to avoid them breaking up. 



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