Anthony Kiedis recently discussed working with Danger Mouse on Red Hot Chili Peppers’ new album on BBC 2 with Jo Whiley. He also discussed if there was a producer like Danger Mouse to push the Beatles (via AnthonyKiedis.net).
Jo Whiley: Can I just ask how that is? When he turns round and says that he doesn’t like what you’ve done. How do you feel?
Anthony Kiedis: The very first time you’re like kind of like, well gee, that’s kind of harsh or arrogant or presumptuous or whatever but then the more you get to know him, the more you get to see how he operates and thinks and it’s just a matter of taste and you know he wants every song to be a classic. You know he doesn’t really have that sort of song writer’s approach of “Well, I love this little song even though it’s not destined to be a classic it’s still part of my experience and it means something to me.” Unless he feels like it’s going to touch the world he doesn’t really want to hear about it. So I grew to respect his point of view and the more we I worked with him and the more he pushed us to be better than we were starting out as, I gained an appreciation and saw his value very much so.
Jo Whiley: Yeah I know. But great for you to be pushed; great to for you to be challenged. I would have thought.
Anthony Kiedis: Got to be pushed.
Jo Whiley: You got to be pushed or otherwise you don’t improve do you?
Anthony Kiedis: You wouldn’t. And imagine you know being sort of around forever and then people forget to tell you what it is that something’s not good enough. So you always think it is going to be good enough. But you need someone to be brutally honest and break your heart and hurt your feelings a little bit along the way.
Jo Whiley: I guess it’s also the emperor’s new clothes. There’s always a danger of that, just people going yeah you’re just fabulous.
Anthony Kiedis: That’s the danger. That’s the danger. I mean imagine some the true greats, the real greats, the classics, like you know a member of The Beatles and someone going, ‘God, you know, that song is just not as good as what I think you can do.’ No one would ever say that. So they might not know.