9. Californication - Red Hot Chili Peppers
By the time that the Red Hot Chili Peppers got back together to start tracking Californication, John Frusciante had already been through his own emotional hell. Leading up to their massive success with Under the Bridge and Give It Away, John quit on the spot during a tour and sunk himself deeper into drug addiction, not coming out on the other side until Anthony Kiedis met up with him to help him get clean. He was essentially starting from ground zero again, but the solo on this song gave us a glimpse that the magic hadn't gone away just yet.
Then again, some of the more technical guitar players aren't going to find much shredding on Californication. The entire arrangement tends to be fairly sparse with no effects as John goes through every note incredibly slowly. What matters is the amount of emotion he's putting into every note here though, carefully putting himself back into place in the Chili Peppers while also telling the story of what Anthony was alluding to in the lyrics to this song.
Since the whole thing is about the reconstruction of the dream that comes with living in California, John's time in the spotlight is practically a mirror image of the lyrics, finding the beauty amongst the madness that's around the seedier sides of Hollywood. Most people that come to California in search of stardom tend to get their dreams crushed pretty quickly, but this solo is practically that light at the end of the tunnel. Fame might be a pipedream, but every now and again those dreams do come true.