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The 11 Best Red Hot Chili Peppers Songs Of All Time

If your favorite isn't here, it's probably #12.

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11. "By the Way"

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The song starts off sounding suspiciously similar to Interpol, but by the time it fully kicks in, you're firmly in classic Red Hot Chili Peppers territory. But then both parts line up, and you get a perfect synthesis of the band's funky and melancholy sides.

10. "Snow (Hey Oh)"

Warner Bros.

The main attraction here is one of John Frusciante's finest arpeggiated guitar figures, but Anthony Kiedis' vocal melody is lovely, and the keyboard part is unexpectedly Beatlesque.

9. "Warped"

Warner Bros.

The band's brief period with Dave Navarro as guitarist tends to be maligned, but "Warped" is the best case scenario of this union – you get the majestic riffing of Navarro's work with Jane's Addiction grafted on to a funky bass line that only Flea could write.

8. "Breaking the Girl"

Warner Bros.

"Breaking the Girl" is one of the band's most sophisticated ballads – it's pretty easy to imagine this being a Jimi Hendrix tune, and the mix of acoustic guitar and understated organ seems like something Led Zeppelin might've cooked up in the mid-'70s. But that odd syncopation in the beat? That's pure RHCP.


7. "Higher Ground"

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This maybe shouldn't be here given that it's a Stevie Wonder song, but Red Hot Chili Peppers' version is so famous and iconic that it can sound as if Stevie's covering his own song when he performs it now.

5. "Scar Tissue"

Warner Bros.

This is, on a purely melodic level, one of the best songs Red Hot Chili Peppers have ever written. But it's even better in the way it gets across the feeling of moving on after trauma – it's such a potent mixture of sadness and relief.

4. "Soul to Squeeze"

Warner Bros.

It's absurd to think that this gorgeous ballad was originally cast aside as an outtake, but thankfully it was saved from obscurity by – of all things! – the Coneheads movie. Flea's bass lines of the verses are lovely, and a great example of his natural talent for expressive parts that propel a song without hijacking it.


3. "Give It Away"

Warner Bros.

Arguably the greatest funk hit of the entire '90s. You've probably heard this song hundreds of time, but are you sick of it yet? Almost certainly not! This one was built to last.

1. "Sir Psycho Sexy"

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The ultimate Red Hot Chili Peppers song! This is the band at their funky, punky best, with Kiedis rapping utterly pornographic lyrics over one of Flea's finest bass lines, and complimented by some of Frusciante's most inventive guitar work.