It looks like Coldplay are not the only ones who were rejected by David Bowie telling the band their song is not “very good” when they reached out to Bowie to collaborate with them. Red Hot Chili Peppers frontman Anthony Kiedis revealed in an interview with Los Angeles’ KLOS (the discussion on Bowie begins around the 24:36 mark) David Bowie turned his band down as well.
Kiedis mentioned the Red Hot Chili Peppers reached out to Bowie several times and even asked him to produce two of their records: 2002’s By The Way and 2006’s Stadium Arcadium. Red Hot Chili Peppers also wanted frequent Bowie collaborator Brian Eno to produce an album for them but Eno turned them down on eight separate occasions. Kiedis recalls the band’s decision to reach out to Bowie saying, “Every record we ever made, we had the band discussion: ‘Who should we get to produce this record?’ ‘I don’t know, we have to try someone new. Let’s get David Bowie!”
Anthony Kiedis did take all of that rejection with a good attitude going on to say, “No is a reasonable answer. It’s one of a couple of answers you could get, and it’s acceptable.” Read the full excerpt below:
So in the beginning we would call him, and he would say no, respectfully. Then, later, we would write long e-mails explaining everything, and why it was time for us to really get our ships on—and he always respectfully declined… For two minutes I was heartbroken, and then I would hear Chad Smith play drums, and I’d be like, ‘We’re good, we can go do something else.’”
We asked him to produce By the Way, as we were writing By the Way, and then we asked him again for our next record, which was Stadium [Arcadium]. He said no to us like, two or three times, but his mate [Brian] Eno, who we’ve also been asking our entire career to please produce a record for us, has said no eight times. All good. You gotta ask. And by the way, “no” is a reasonable answer. It’s one of a couple of answers you could get, and it’s acceptable.