Chickenfoot is a rock supergroup formed in 2008. The group consists of vocalist Sammy Hagar (ex-Van Halen and Montrose), bassist Michael Anthony (also ex–Van Halen), guitarist Joe Satriani, and drummer Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers). Due to consistent recording and touring commitments to the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Kenny Aronoff joined the group in 2011 as a touring replacement for Smith. While the band still remains together, in June 2016 Smith said that he had doubts about the band touring or recording again due to the busy schedule of each band member.
The group has released two studio albums, one live album and one box set.
While the band's name and logo are a disparaging term for the peace symbol, the "footprint of the chicken," bassist Michael Anthony asserts that the name originated from initial jam sessions between Hagar, Smith and himself: "there are three talons on a chicken’s foot and there [were] three of us." Later Anthony stated: "it was just supposed to be a bullshit name that we’d used for a while, and then [when] the rumours spread about the band, everybody used that name so we thought, 'fuck it, let’s call it Chickenfoot' – it all comes down to the music anyway." Chickenfoot's second studio album, Chickenfoot III, was released on September 27, 2011.
Formation and self-titled debut album (2009–2010)
According to vocalist Sammy Hagar: "Chickenfoot started off with me, Michael Anthony, and Chad Smith jamming at my club, Cabo Wabo, in Mexico. Then people started asking us when we were going to tour, make a record, etc. So I said if we’re going to do this properly then we’re going to have to get a guitarist, so let’s talk to Joe Satriani. As far as I’m concerned he’s the best guitarist in the world." Hagar, Anthony and Satriani had previously collaborated in 2002 under the name Planet Us.
The band's first performance together was in February 2008 at a Hagar concert in The Pearl Concert Theatre @ The Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. The show included a three song set which included Led Zeppelin's "Rock and Roll", Traffic's "Dear Mr. Fantasy" and "Going Down", a song often performed by Hagar and Anthony in their additional band, Los Tres Gusanos. Regarding the show, bassist Michael Anthony states: "At that point, we knew the chemistry was there. It was so much fun, and the instant gratification from the audience was great. We decided to take the next step and see what we could do. It was just too much fun to pass up."
During breaks in Satriani's touring schedule, the four-piece gathered in Hagar's home to record demos, and ultimately recorded a full-length album at Skywalker Sound.
The band's eponymous debut album, Chickenfoot, was released on June 4, 2009. On its release date, Chickenfoot performed the single "Oh Yeah!" on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien. Chickenfoot subsequently began touring in Europe and America.
In October 2009, Smith reconvened with the Red Hot Chili Peppers to start work on their tenth studio album, ultimately causing Chickenfoot to enter a temporary hiatus. Despite this, the band still appeared on television once more to perform "Sexy Little Thing" and "Oh Yeah" on the November 6, 2009 broadcast of Jimmy Kimmel Live! (taped November 5). Smith stated:
There will definitely be a window to work with these guys [again]. I feel kind of bad – we're getting offers all over the place, but I've got to go back to my marriage this fall. Chickenfoot is like my mistress. We've got this momentum going, and it's quite organic and natural. It will happen when it happens. We're in that position where nothing has to be forced – we're lucky to have something that's just fun to do.
This is additionally stated on the interview with Chad Smith on MusicRadar.com, posted on August 24, 2009:
What about Chickenfoot? After you do the Chili Peppers, are you going to do another record?
Absolutely! We’re having so much fun and it’s gone so well – there’s no reason not to continue with Chickenfoot. That’s something I want to make quite clear: Chickenfoot isn’t a one-off thing for any of us. We’re a band.
I would imagine throughout my time with the Peppers that Joe will probably do another solo record, and maybe Sammy and Mike will do something on their own. But as soon as I’m done with the Chili Peppers, I’m diving right back into Chickenfoot. We’re going to outdo this record, too. That’s the plan and I’m sticking to it.
Chickenfoot III, future (2010–present)
As a guest on VH1 Classic's That Metal Show on April 17, 2010 Joe Satriani confirmed that a second Chickenfoot album was in the works, that he and Sammy Hagar had gotten together for several writing sessions, and that with any luck it would be released in 2010. In the same month, Chickenfoot voiced themselves in the Aqua Teen Hunger Force episode "IAMAPOD".
On May 6, 2010, Chad Smith confirmed that Chickenfoot would be recording their second album in the fall of 2010 after he completes the recording of the next Red Hot Chili Peppers album. Around the same time, Satriani confirmed that a number of songs had been written, including one called "Come Closer," which began simply as a piano and vocal number.
On September 3, 2010, Chickenfoot announced that they were gearing up to record their second album. Although Chad Smith participated in the recording, the band would have to consider a different drummer for touring purposes, as Smith along with the rest of the Red Hot Chili Peppers were about to release their next album I'm with You on August 30, 2011 and will follow it up with a subsequent tour. The band said they're considering plans to audition different drummers and possibly find a drummer to fill in for Smith. Joe Satriani stated that he would love to have Tommy Lee fill in for Chad. Some additional names that have been in consideration are Abe Laboriel, Jr. from Paul McCartney's band, Velvet Revolver's Matt Sorum, Pantera and Hellyeah's Vinnie Paul and Jason Bonham.
On October 15, 2010, Chad discussed his future with Chickenfoot and said that although he and the rest of the band planned to enter the studio in January 2011, he would be unable to tour in support of the next Chickenfoot album because of the Chili Peppers' new album and subsequent touring.
On January 21, 2011, Michael Anthony confirmed that the band would enter the studio on January 29, 2011, along with Chad Smith who'll record the drums for the album, though as stated before, he'll not be touring with the band due to his commitments with Red Hot Chili Peppers.
On March 11, 2011, Sammy Hagar confirmed that the band had been recording with Mike Fraser, a Canadian producer, engineer, and mixer. He additionally confirmed that they had 12 songs worked up and that a few of titles are, 'No Change,' 'Who's Next,' 'Astral Years,' and 'I Ain't Got You, I Got The Two By Blues.' The official title for the new album is Chickenfoot III (three). Sammy Hagar says "It's the working title, but I guarantee it'll stick.", Chickenfoot III is due to be released in fall 2011 with the album cover being in 3-D. Hagar additionally stated the band are additionally planning to do a third, fourth, and greatest hits albums sometime in the future. Joe Satriani recently confirmed that "Come Closer" and a song called "Setting Sun" are to additionally be on Chickenfoot III Joe Satriani additionally sent an email on May 3, 2011 to all his fans saying that Chickenfoot III was almost finished and the band were hoping to mix the album in June 2011. On May 22, Chad Smith tweeted that he had just finished cutting the last 2 songs for the album.
On June 19, 2011, in an interview with Joe Satriani, he revealed that the new album is due out in October. Satriani additionally confirmed that the band will do a select number of shows in the fall, and hopefully more in February 2012. The band must work around Sammy and Chad's additional schedules.
The next day, on June 20, 2011, on his birthday, Michael Anthony confirmed that the mixing for the new album has been completed, with the first single from the new album expected to hit radio airways this summer, and the full enchilada to follow in October.
On June 30, 2011, Michael Anthony told the Van Halen News Desk directly, that the new album will be released on September 27, 2011. The first single from the album, to be released on August 2, 2011, is titled "Bigfoot".
On July 6, 2011, it was announced that the band signed a new distribution deal with eOne Music in North America. Also, the title for the new album was confirmed to be Chickenfoot III. On July 8, 2011, the band posted a teaser of one of their new songs online with this message: "Attention Foot Soldiers... Get Your Boots On".
Michael Anthony has confirmed that the band plan to tour in the fall of 2011, supporting the release of Chickenfoot III. He said the band are still not sure about a temporary replacement drummer for Chad Smith, though they might play a few shows with Chad, and a few shows with another drummer filling in for Chad while he's on tour with the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
According to Satriani, it is likely that Kenny Aronoff will take over the drumming duties from Smith for the tour promoting the second album, due to the latter's commitments with Red Hot Chili Peppers. This was confirmed on August 27.
The band announced that "Big Foot", the first single off the second album, would make its online debut July 31, 2011, with the single being released to radio and iTunes on August 1, 2011.
On September 24, 2011, Sammy Hagar appeared on That Metal Show on VH1 Classic and admitted that Chickenfoot decided to name their second album "Chickenfoot III" to avoid the dreaded second album drop-off experienced by most bands. He said they just decided to "skip" the second album and make the third album.
On September 27, for the release of III, the band played a live concert via webcast from TRI Studios in California. A fan Q&A followed the performance. They additionally played a show at the Cabo Wabo Cantina in Mexico on October 9, 2011.
The band have recently finished a 10 date Road test tour with Kenny Aronoff, 5 dates in the US, and 5 in Europe. They have additionally recently performed "Different Devil" on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.
The 2012 "Different Devil" summer US tour started on May 4 in South Lake Tahoe, and includes at least 20 dates.
It was announced on August 28, 2012, that after Chickenfoot's former record label went out of business, and the debut album couldn't be found anywhere, they're re-releasing the debut album with eOne music with bonus live tracks "Lighten Up", "Big Foot", "Last Temptation", and "Something Going Wrong", recorded throughout the Different Devil tour of Spring 2012.
On November 30, 2012, Chickenfoot's first live album LV was released as part of the Limited Edition Boxset I+III+LV paired with their first and second album in their Limited Edition releases. on December 7, 2012, LV will additionally see a release on its own.
In a Rolling Stone interview released in October 2014, Hagar stated that although he had enjoyed working with the group, disappointing album sales probably precluded a third Chickenfoot studio album. Satriani additionally has made similar comments about album sales being a factor that has prevented them from continuing quickly.
In Sept 2015, Joe Satriani confirmed that the band was working on a new song with possibly more to come - "I think all my complaining and foot stomping really had an effect, because it was really bothering me and I still, philosophically, just felt like there was a really big disconnect there between me and a few of the additional members of Chickenfoot". He went on to add "and I can happily tell you now that there's a track that's circulating through the band". There was no time line given for the release of the new music, but according to Satriani "there's hope".
The band briefly reunited for only two(2) shows on May 7th, and May 8th, 2016 at Harrah's Showroom at South Lake Tahoe. During the show, the band debuted a brand new song titled "Divine Termination."
Chad Smith discussed the future of Chickenfoot in a June 2016 interview with Rolling Stone. He was asked if Chickenfoot was ever going to tour again to which he replied "We just played a few weeks ago up in Tahoe, but everyone has different things going on. Sam [Hagar] has his own thing with Mike [Anthony] and Joe [Satriani] is on his own tour. We really enjoy playing together, but with my schedule I don't see us playing too much. I would love to make a few new music with those guys, but we'd have to be in the same room at the same time. I just don't know. It's up in the air. I love playing with those guys, though. It's a real treat.
- Michael Anthony – bass guitar, backing vocals (2008–present)
- Sammy Hagar – lead vocals, rhythm guitar (2008–present)
- Joe Satriani – lead guitar, keyboards, backing vocals (2008–present)
- Chad Smith – drums, percussion, backing vocals (2008–present)
- Touring members
- Kenny Aronoff – drums, percussion, backing vocals (2011–2012)
|Title||Album details||Peak chart positions||Certifications|
|"—" denotes releases that didn't chart|
|"Soap on a Rope"||—|
|"Sexy Little Thing"||40|
|2010||"Get It Up"||—|
|"My Kinda Girl"||—|
|2011||"Big Foot"||32||Chickenfoot III|
|"Three and a Half Letters"||—|
|2013||"Something Going Wrong"||—||LV|
|"—" denotes releases that didn't chart|
|2009||"Oh Yeah"||Jon Luini & Arthur Rosato|
|"Soap on a Rope"||Jon Luini & Arthur Rosato|
|"Sexy Little Thing"||Meat & Potatoes|
|2010||"Get It Up"||Darrin Bristow|
|"My Kind of Girl"||Meat & Potatoes|
|2011||"Big Foot"||Zan Passante & Jon Hill|
|"Three and a Half Letters"||Arthur Rosato|
|2009||Chickenfoot Deluxe Limited Edition CD+DVD|
|2010||Get Your Buzz On Live|