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Veteran rockers Red Hot Chili Peppers had nothing but good things to say about Bruno Mars’ performance at Sunday night’s Super Bowl.
In an open letter after the show, the band’s bassist, Flea, called Mars a “super talented young man” and thanked him for inviting them to be part of the gig.
The flashy, high-energy show brought in the largest viewership in the history of the big game. According to Nielsen data, Mars not only topped last year’s 111 million for Beyonce’s show, but also beat the record set by Madonna, Nicki Minaj and M.I.A in 2012.
Not bad for the 28-year-old artist who barely hit the national stage a handful of years ago and who had skeptics wondering if he would be able to pull it off successfully.
In his letter, Flea also dropped a bombshell, stating that the band mimed their entire performance – except vocals which were sung life. The longtime rocker said it was made clear to them that the drums, bass and guitar would be pre-recorded.
“I understand the NFL’s stance on this, given they only have a few minutes to set up the stage, there a zillion things that could go wrong and ruin the sound for the folks watching in the stadium and the t.v. viewers,” he wrote.
Flea said the band has had a stance since the late 1980s that they would not mime playing – even recalling a performance at “The Top of the Pops” program in the U.K., where they refused to mime properly by playing bass with shoes and jumping around.
As for Sunday’s performance, the bassist said they had a lot of discussions regarding what they should do and felt that with live vocals they could bring the spirit and freedom of their performance live.
“I met and spoke with Bruno, who was a beautiful dude, a real talented musician, and we worked out something that seemed like it would be fun,” Flea wrote.
Mars has not yet responded to the praise from the Hall of Fame rock band.