If You Have To Ask

Album: Blood Sugar Sex Magik (1991)
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Songfacts®:

  • This song was not supposed to make sense, and the chorus was written to certify this song as nonsense: "If you have to ask, you'll never know."
  • Although a single was made for this song, it was banned from radio stations because the line after "If you have to ask, you'll never know" was "funky motherf--kers will not be told to go." The funky motherf--kers were the Red Hot Chili Peppers. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Spencer - Equinunk, PA, for above 2
  • The clapping at the end of the song is for John Frusciante's improvised guitar solo. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    evan - Paramus, New Jersey
  • Frusciante's wah-driven solo was named one of the greatest wah solos of all time, ranking at #18 on Guitar World's 2015 list.

Comments: 6

  • Evan from Kali, MiI'm surprised that it isn't already mentioned: the fact that this is a cover. This is a cover of a P-Funk song of the same title. P-Funk is arguably their largest influence.
  • Mark from New York, NyWow, thanks for that. Thats deep Mike...
  • Michal from Lubin, PolandActually, the song has a meaning. The chorus is a quote of Louis Armstrong. Where he was at some fancy party, a woman asked him what it is, that "jazz thing". He answered: "Well, ma'am, if you have to ask, you'll never know". Kiedis uses this quote to impress his love to funk music. btw this is what all song is about - funk, loving funk :].
  • Madalyn from Greensburg, Pai've been in love with them and haven't stopped... 1993 is when i heard it and it is forever
  • Brian from Winchester, Mathe chili peppers- you love them or you hate them, maybe that's what this song is about. you wish they'd stay forever, or be banished. it's a weird metaphor
  • Sully from Newport, VtOn RHCP's album Live In Hyde Park, Flea (roughly) quotes the chorus of this song before the band plays a cover of Black Cross by 45 Grave: "This song is called Black Cross. And if you have to ask, then you'll never know."
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