Josh Klinghoffer has spoken out for the first time since his departure from the Red Hot Chili Peppers. He was let go by the band in December after being their guitarist for ten years. Former Chili Pepper guitarist John Frusciante will replace him.

In an interview with Marc Maron on his WTF podcast, Klinghoffer said it was “a pretty simple decision” and that there was “no animosity” between him and his former bandmates. “It’s absolutely John’s place to be in that band. So that’s why I’m happy for him, I’m happy that he’s back with them.”

He went on to say that his firing came as a “complete shock but not a surprise” since he had known that Frusciante and Flea had been jamming for a few months.

The band told Klinghoffer the news in person, an interaction he recalls as “really sweet”.

“I rode my bike over [to Flea’s house]. They just said, ‘We’ll get right to it. We’ve decided to ask John to come back to the band.’ And I just sat there quiet for a second and I said, ‘I’m not surprised.’ And the only thing I could think to say was, ‘I wish I could have done something with you guys, musically or creatively, that would have made this an absolute impossibility.'”

Prior to his departure, Klinghoffer had been working on a new album with the band, saying that songs were written but never recorded. He now suspects those songs have been scrapped in favour of the ones written with Frusciante.

Reflecting back on his time with the band, Klinghoffer said, “If John coming back had happened five years ago, it would have been hard for me, temporally, to weigh [my contributions] against what they had. Now, after 10 years, two tours, and almost three albums of writing, I’m really proud of what I did with them. I feel like we did create something.”

Listen to the full interview below.

Filed under: Red Hot Chili Peppers