Red Hot Chili Peppers to do Super Bowl halftime gig

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(CNN) — Flea and the rest of Red Hot Chili Peppers will jump on to the stage, compliments of fellow performer Bruno Mars, at next month’s Super Bowl halftime show.

The news was announced Saturday during Fox’s coverage of an NFC divisional playoff game.

Mars, a Grammy-winning pop singer, invited the Chili Peppers to join him for the Super Bowl XLVIII festivities on February 2 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

“One of the most successful acts in rock history, Red Hot Chili Peppers, which is singer Anthony Kiedis, bassist Flea, drummer, Chad Smith, and guitarist Josh Klinghoffer, have sold more than 60 million albums, including five multi-platinum LPs, and won six Grammy Awards,” the NFL said in a press release.

Their hit songs include “Give It Away,” “Scar Tissue,” “Californication” and “Suck My Kiss.”

Kiedis and Flea, born Michael Balzary, are more than 20 years older than Mars. Their band has pioneered a bold style of rock infused with funk and rap.

His 50th birthday bash in October 2012 gave Flea time to take stock of his life, he told CNN.

“I’m definitely wiser, and less likely to make gigantic blunders of an intellectual, spiritual, emotional or physical type,” he said. “… But more than anything the passion for the things that I really care about like playing music, and being kind, and children, and the things I love — sports, books, art — my passion for all these things has deepened.”

Expectations for Super Bowl halftime performances are always high.

The NFL claims the Pepsi Super Bowl halftime show “is the most-watched musical event of the year. More than 110.5 million viewers in the U.S. watched last year’s show.”

Beyonce’s performance in 2013 was critically acclaimed by fans. Previous acts include Madonna, The Who, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Prince, the Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney and U2.

Michael Jackson’s performance at Super Bowl XXVII in 1993 is credited with launching the tradition of blockbuster halftime shows.

Mars — born Peter Gene Hernandez in Hawaii 28 years ago — was just 4 when he began performing in his family’s show as an Elvis impersonator.

His debut album for Atlantic Records, “Doo-Wops & Hooligans,” includes “Just The Way You Are,” which won him a Grammy for best male pop vocal performance in 2010. He is nominated for multiple major categories at this year’s show and will launch the second leg of his tour with his band The Hooligans this summer.

Mars’ second album, “Unorthodox Jukebox,” includes the hits “Locked Out of Heaven” and “When I Was Your Man.”

By Phil Gast

CNN’s Alan Duke and Denise Quan contributed to this report.

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