Scar Tissue (song)

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This article is about the Red Hot Chili Peppers song. For other uses, see Scar tissue.
"Scar Tissue"
Single by Red Hot Chili Peppers
from the album Californication
B-side "Gong Li"
"Instrumental #1"
Released May 25, 1999
Format CD, cassette
Recorded 1999
Genre Alternative rock, blues rock
Length 3:35
Label Warner Bros.
Writer(s) Flea, Frusciante, Kiedis, Smith
Producer(s) Rick Rubin
Red Hot Chili Peppers singles chronology
"Love Rollercoaster"
"Scar Tissue"
"Around the World"
Music video
"Scar Tissue" on YouTube

"Scar Tissue" is the first single from the American alternative rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers' seventh studio album Californication, released in 1999. It is one of their most successful songs, spending a then-record 16 consecutive weeks on top of the Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart, as well as 10 weeks at the top of the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart and reached number 8 on Billboard Hot 100 Airplay.[1] It peaked at number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100.[2] In the UK, the song reached number 15 on the UK Singles Chart. It won a Grammy Award for Best Rock Song in 2000. The song is notable for its mellow intro guitar riff and for its slide guitar solos throughout. Guitar World placed the guitar solo 63rd in its list of the "100 Greatest Guitar Solos".

"Scar Tissue" has been a live staple in the band's setlists since its first performance in 1998 making it the band's third most performed song ever behind only "Give It Away" and "Under the Bridge".[3]


"Scar Tissue" is considered to be representative of the new, more melodic rock sound the band experimented with on Californication (in contrast to the psychedelic One Hot Minute, and dry funk of Blood Sugar Sex Magik).


In 2004 Anthony Kiedis published Scar Tissue. Co-written by Larry Sloman, it was an autobiography with the principal theme of sex, drugs and rock-'n-roll. In the book he talks about the consequences of drugs (especially heroin) and in which way this can destroy somebody's life.

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Scar Tissue" was directed by Stéphane Sednaoui, who also directed the video for "Give It Away".

The opening shot is of John Frusciante driving, a metaphor for Frusciante's return to the band (he does not drive in real life). But the four of them are battered, beaten and bandaged. They are traveling in a rusty wreck and playing broken instruments on the comeback trail. The video ends after an emotional thirty second Frusciante guitar solo at the moment of sunset, with John tossing the broken guitar from the car. The car Frusciante drove for the video was a 1967 Pontiac Catalina convertible.[4] A very similar concept was considered, then scrapped, for the earlier "Soul to Squeeze" video. Prior to the video shoot Kiedis had his hair cut and bleached his brown hair platinum blond.


Track listings[edit]

CD single (1999) (Catalogue Number 9 16913-2)[edit]

  1. "Scar Tissue" (album) – 3:37
  2. "Gong Li" (previously unreleased) – 3:42
  3. "Instrumental #1" (previously unreleased) – 2:48

CD single (Slipcase) (1999)[edit]

  1. "Scar Tissue" (album) – 3:37
  2. "Gong Li" (previously unreleased) – 3:42

Cassette single (1999)[edit]

  1. "Scar Tissue" (album)
  2. "Gong Li" (previously unreleased)

Jukebox single[edit]

  1. "Scar Tissue" (album) – 3:37
  2. "Gong Li" (previously unreleased) – 3:42

Chart positions[edit]


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[22] Gold 35,000^
Italy (FIMI)[23] Gold 25,000double-dagger
United Kingdom (BPI)[24] Silver 200,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[25] Gold 500,000^

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Radio Music: Top Radio Songs Chart". Billboard. 1999-10-09. Retrieved 2016-07-27. 
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications), page 523.
  3. ^ "Red Hot Chili Peppers Live". The Side. Retrieved 2016-07-27. 
  4. ^ The music video on
  5. ^ " – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  6. ^ " – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue" (in Dutch). Ultratip.
  7. ^ "Red Hot Chili Peppers – Chart history" Canadian Hot 100 for Red Hot Chili Peppers. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
  8. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 70, No. 4, November 15, 1999". RPM. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  9. ^ "Rock/Alternative - Volume 69, No. 14, July 26, 1999". RPM. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  10. ^ "Red Hot Chili Peppers: Scar Tissue" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland.
  11. ^ " – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue" (in French). Les classement single.
  12. ^ " – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue". GfK Entertainment Charts.
  13. ^ "Chart Track: Week 23, 1999". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
  14. ^ " – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  15. ^ " – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue". Top 40 Singles.
  16. ^ "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 100. Retrieved January 19, 2014.
  17. ^ "Archive Chart: 1999-06-12" UK Singles Chart. Retrieved 26 February 2015.
  18. ^ a b c d e "Red Hot Chili Peppers - Billboard Singles". allmusic. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  19. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1999". Retrieved 2010-08-28. 
  20. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 70, No. 8, December 13, 1999". RPM. Retrieved 2010-10-18. 
  21. ^ "Rock/Alternative - Volume 70, No. 8, December 13, 1999". RPM. Retrieved 2010-10-18. 
  22. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 1999 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved October 24, 2016. 
  23. ^ "Italian single certifications – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved October 24, 2016.  Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter Red Hot Chili Peppers in the field Filtra. Select 2016 in the field Anno. The certification will load automatically
  24. ^ "British single certifications – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved October 24, 2016.  Enter Scar Tissue in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Silver in the field By Award. Click Search
  25. ^ "American single certifications – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Scar Tissue". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved October 24, 2016.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH