Red Hot Chili Peppers and Atoms for Peace's bassist, Flea, is a lifelong LA Lakers fan who, like many of his fellow LA fans, love Kobe Bryant for what he's done for the team and the NBA over the course of his career. This week, Bryant played his final game for the Lakers, and Flea was there to play his version of the Nation Anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner," ahead of Bryant's farewell game. Before the game, though, Flea spoke with Rolling Stone about the retiring player, calling him both the John Coltrane and Jimi Hendrix of basketball, which is extremely high praise in regards to musical comparisons.
He also name dropped Charlie Parker and Jimmy Page. Flea is a huge fan of jazz and rock n' roll, in case you didn't know, so naming these two artists, who are probably his favorites, definitely shows how he feels about the basketball great.
"I look at him as someone like, you know, Charlie Parker or John Coltrane or Jimmy Page or Jimi Hendrix, you know? He's been able to change and evolve and grow and be such a master of his craft. It's been great seeing him grow up, because he joined the Lakers when he was 17, and he's done so much for our city," Flea to Rolling Stone this week. "To me, Kobe is just like a great artist or a great writer or a great musician. A great basketball player really affects me in an emotional and spiritual way. So I really respect Kobe Bryant. I'm really grateful for him."
You can watch Flea's rendition of the National Anthem right here (via NME):
Bryant ended the game with 60 points, leading the Lakers one last time to a victory. Check out Dime Magazine's coverage of the game here.