Michael Peter Balzary, better known by his stage name Flea, is an Australian-born American musician and occasional actor. He is best known as the bassist, one of the co-founding members, and one of the composers of the rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers with whom he was inducted in 2012 into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Previous to the formation of Red Hot Chili Peppers, he played bass for the bands What Is This and Fear.
He quit What Is This to join Fear before any of What Is This's commercial releases.
He quit Fear to co-found Red Hot Chili Peppers.
In 1984, he was a touring bassist for Circle Jerks.
In 1990, he played on several songs on the Weirdos album Condor.
In 1997, he played bass for Jane's Addiction. Jane's Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro was also a member of Red Hot Chili Peppers at the time.
More recently, he has appeared as member of the rock supergroups Atoms for Peace, Antemasque, Pigface, and Rocket Juice & the Moon. Flea has also collaborated with many artists including The Mars Volta, Johnny Cash, Alanis Morissette, and Young MC.
Widely regarded as one of the best rock bass players of all time, in 2009, Rolling Stone 's readers ranked Flea the second-best bassist of all-time in their top ten poll, ranked behind only John Entwistle and ahead of Paul McCartney.
Flea has also made occasional forays into acting, appearing in films that span many genres such as Suburbia, Back to the Future Part II and Part III, My Own Private Idaho, The Chase, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Thrashin', The Big Lebowski, and Baby Driver, in addition to voicing the character Donnie Thornberry in The Wild Thornberrys animated television series and films. In 2014, Flea made his long awaited return to acting when he appeared in the film Low Down.
Flea is the co-founder of Silverlake Conservatory of Music, a non-profit music education organization founded in 2001 for underprivileged children.