Scott Ian
has defended Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons‘s decision not to resurrect KISS‘s original lineup, explaining that “those guys know what’s right for their band.” imgres

During a brand new interview with Florida’s 99 Rock radio station, the ANTHRAX guitarist was asked if he thinks Stanley and Simmons should reunite with former KISS members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss. He responded: “Look, I’m a lifelong fan of that band. But the bottom line is, and what people need to understand is, look, it’s Gene and Paul‘s band. They are the guys that have worked their asses off since 1973 to keep that band, that business moving forward all the way into 2016 and still on the level that they’re doing it.”

He continued: “I know a lot of fans get pissed off — ‘Oh, those guys are being dicks’ or whatever — and it’s, like, you have no idea. You have no idea what it takes to make a band last that long at the level that KISS is. So it’s their band and it’s their decision.

“As a fan, I would love to see Ace Frehley play one more time in KISS. And I’m gonna be completely honest, and this is no knock on Peter, but the last time I saw them with Peter, on the KISS/AEROSMITH run, like thirteen years ago or something, whenever that was, the tempos were terrible; everything was just way too slow. So if that’s the case, no, I don’t wanna see that; I wanna see stuff played at the right tempo. If [Peter] could play it at the right tempo, then more power to him, and I would love to see that; of course I would. But, you know, it’s not my band. It’s Gene and Paul‘s band, and those guys know what’s right for their band; they’ve proven it. Stop questioning Gene and Paul.”

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Gene Simmons Q&A: Career Endurance, KISS’ Legacy and Paul McCartney’s Influence

Ken Sharp | Rock Cellar Magazine

geneOutspoken and brash, arrogant and opinionated, profane and vulgar, supremely narcissistic and sexist, are among the colorful descriptions both the public and media foist at KISS’ founding member Gene Simmons.

Acutely aware of how he is perceived, Simmons even named his last solo album Asshole. When meeting with the “God of Thunder,” one will notice he’s polite and gracious, proving there’s much more behind the self-proclaimed “Man of 1000 Faces.”

Currently on the road with KISS for their “Freedom To Rock” jaunt of the U.S., the band, or brand, as Simmons often likes to describe the Roll & Roll Hall of Famers, are not content to rest on their laurels and count their mountainous pile of greenbacks. Rather, they continue to press the envelope with a keen understanding of the transformative power of how a rock and roll band can be marketed in today’s world.

Yet as Simmons attests, his accomplishments with KISS have far exceeded his expectations. “It is really weird that KISS, which never really started out as anything but this bizarre dream of four knuckleheads off the streets of New York just wanting to do one record, that four decades later, the RIAA crowned us as the number-one Gold record award winning group of all time in America. It’s amazing especially since we’ve only had three hit singles, Beth, I Was Made For Loving You and Forever.”

For a group routinely dismissed by short-sighted critics as a flash in the pan, a “joke band” comprised of talentless cretinous musical goons soon to be forgotten and quickly discarded on the junk heap of failed rock bands past, KISS are having the last laugh. Detractors be damned, 46 years since the original band–Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Ace Frehley and Peter Criss–first came together, in 2016 KISS continue to transcend the parameters of what a rock band can do.

Whether starring in their own Scooby Doo cartoon (Scooby Doo & KISS: Rock & Roll Mystery), teaming up with menswear designer/clothier John Varvatos or collaborating with Japanese teen sensations Momoiro Clover Z on Samurai Son, the band’s first # 1 single in the “Land of the Rising Sun,” yesterday and today KISS stubbornly follow the beat of their own drum and continue to thrive, loudly.

Witness their latest “Freedom To Rock” tour, which is drawing in a significant generation of younger fans eager and excited to be baptized, KISS-style. We sat down with the band’s resident “God of Thunder,” Gene Simmons, who offered a primer in all things KISS, past, present and future.

Rock Cellar Magazine: The new KISS tour is labeled the “Freedom to Rock” tour. When did you first feel the freedom that music provided as a creative outlet?

Gene Simmons: That’s a very good question. When you’re a pimple-faced little kid, we’re all trying to figure out where we fit on the chess board of life. We try to sort of hang to or latch on to that thing that makes us acceptable and it’s usually not mathematics, unfortunately, or sciences. The kid that put in the time to excel at math and science, the rest of the kids at school don’t just go, “Oh yeah, I need to hang out with that guy.”

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See Rush relive hijinks from KISS tour

Kory Grow | Rolling Stone

Rush‘s Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson share stories from their mid-Seventies tour with Kiss in a new documentary, Time Stand Still, which will play in theaters next month. While on the road, Lifeson used to put a paper bag on his head and put his hands through his pants to entertain his bandmates and Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley. He called his character “The Bag.” The film will screen in multiple theaters for one night only November 3rd before its DVD and Blu-ray release on November 18th.

“Bring the Bag over here,” Lifeson says in a clip, doing an impression of Frehley in a high-pitched voice. “Howie, where’s the Bag?” Lee echoes, referring to the band’s lighting director.

They would fool around, much to the consternation of Kiss’ Gene Simmons. “Gene was very, very upset with the Bag,” Lifeson recalls, “and that made Ace even happier.”

“Gene was straight,” Lee said. “He wasn’t high like we were. He had a different sense of reality when he came into Ace’s room. We were drinking and smoking and generally being idiots.” Lee goes on to tell a story about how Simmons clashed with Lifeson when they had two women in Frehley’s room.

Time Stand Still provides a look at the group’s R40 tour with narration by Paul Rudd. Lee, Lifeson and drummer Neil Peart all participated in interviews for the film. The film will be accompanied by 20 minutes of extras, including interviews with Simmons, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Chad Smith, Foo Fighters’ Taylor Hawkins, Heart’s Wilson sisters, Thin Lizzy’s Scott Gorham and producer Nick Raskulinecz. Continue reading

Yoshiki, Gene Simmons Unite Via Shared Love of Rock, ‘We Are X’ Film, Hello Kitty Dolls

Lyndsey Parker | Yahoo Music


Sitting side by side at X Japan founder Yoshiki Hayashi’s Los Angeles recording studio to discuss the new X Japan rockumentary We Are X, Yoshiki and KISS bassist/mouthpiece Gene Simmons don’t seem to have much in common. Yoshiki is sweet, serious, and slight; Gene is loud, brash, and 6’2” even sans his signature platform-footed dragon boots. But the two are in many ways kindred spirits, united by their unwavering belief in the power of rock ‘n’ roll. They’re also two of the only rock stars to ever be immortalized by Sanrio as Hello Kitty dolls — Yoshiki’s doll even has a name, Yoshikitty — which says a great deal about Yoshiki’s international superstar status, even if the classically trained Japanese rocker still isn’t a KISS-level household name in the States.

Yoshiki and Gene Simmons Hang Out With Their Hello Kitty Dolls

The X Japan and KISS legends are two of the few rock stars to ever be recreated in official Hello Kitty form.

“It’s amazing. Miracles can happen,” grins Yoshiki, seated beside Simmons and a cluster of Hello Kitty figurines at one of his deluxe studio’s many grand pianos. “I’m sitting next to Gene Simmons, and he’s talking about my band. It’s like, that’s unbelievable.”

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The Story Behind The Song: Ace Frehley’s New York Groove

Geoff Barton | Team Rock

79841f6a-7a8a-4929-b6c3-cbd7e5e9a7f2New York Groove is Ace Frehley’s very own personal anthem. The track is as synonymous with the ex-Kiss man as his silver superhero suit and smokin’ six-string.

Frehley was born and raised in the Bronx, so the Big Apple is his kinda town. And New York Groove is his kinda song – even though he didn’t actually write it. Nevertheless, when Ace barks the line ‘It’s gonna be ecstasy… this place was meant for me’ above that foot-stomping rhythm, you can sense the native pride shivering down his Spaceman spine.

“A lot of people think I wrote New York Groove. It’s not a myth that I’ve perpetuated, but that’s the way it is. I wish I would’ve wrote the song, though. I would’ve made a lot more cash out of it, ha-ha-hargh!” Frehley chuckles in his inimitable style.

In fact New York Groove was written by Russ Ballard and recorded originally by Hello, the glitter-popstrels who enjoyed a brief burst of fame in the mid-70s. Three years before Frehley included New York Groove on his self-titled 1978 solo album, Hello’s version was a hit all over Europe. It got to No.9 in the UK and No.7 in Germany.

Ballard takes up the story: “In 1975 I’d just finished producing Roger Daltrey’s solo album, Ride A Rock Horse. I got it cut in London but Roger said to me: ‘People say Bob Ludwig’s cuts are louder at Sterling Sound in New York. Do you fancy flying out and doing a cut there?’”

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Gene Simmons on the majesty of Gene Simmons

Paul Elliott | Team Rock

cc02855d-6962-46d6-b5b3-182c616c7cbeGene Simmons – bassist/vocalist for Kiss, TV personality, multi-millionaire entrepreneur – is the living embodiment of the American Dream. An only child, he was born Chaim Witz on August 25, 1949 in Haifa, Israel. Eight years later, after his parents separated, his mother Flora took him to live in New York City, where, in 1973, he and Paul Stanley co-founded Kiss. Simmons and Stanley have led the band throughout their career, selling more than 100 million albums.

Simmons now lives in California with his wife Shannon Tweed and their children Nick and Sophie – all stars of the hit US reality TV show Gene Simmons Family Jewels.

What are the best and worst things about being Gene Simmons?

Without sounding too cocky – although I’ve certainly been accused of that all my life – there is no negative to being Gene Simmons. You have to look at it relatively: it’s either this or flipping burgers. What’s the English equivalent, frying chips? What’s so bad about being rich and famous? I don’t understand what all the angst is all about. The only people who should have complaints are the unfortunate poor on the planet. But when you hear the ultra-rich saying: “Oh, it’s so lonely at the top,” what a load of shit. If you can’t deal with fame, don’t be famous. I have nothing to complain about.

What are your tips for pleasing a woman?

Well, the tip that God gave me is the most important one.

What’s your best lyrical innuendo?

‘When love rears its head I wanna get on your case/ I wanna put my log in your fireplace’ [Kiss’s Burn Bitch Burn].

Can you put a figure on your personal fortune? Continue reading

GENE SIMMONS On Living In America: There Is ‘No Place Like This On Earth’

Arroe collins | Blabbermouth

Radio host Arroe Collins recently conducted an interview with KISS bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons for the “Unplugged & Totally Uncut” podcast. You can now listen to the chat using the Spreaker widget below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On his many philanthropic endeavors:

Gene: “We are the luckiest bastards who ever walked the face of the planet, ’cause we get to live in America. Those of us, especially, who are here legally, and I’m a legal immigrant, because there is a difference. I went, I stood in line and waited for my turn and entered the country legally.

“This country gives more than any other country on the face of the planet. Think about it: there are anywhere from twelve to twenty [million] illegal immigrants in America. That’s more than most of the populations of the countries on the planet. Did you know that? There are more people here, because this is the land of opportunity. I don’t remember the last boatload of people who dropped to their knees on a shore and said, ‘Thank you, God, we finally made it to the shores of France.’ That’s never gonna happen. Here you’re in America, and over here you can be anybody. Yes, it’s a racist country, there are people with decidedly racist points of views, and yet we have an African-American president — two terms. Yes, its’ a sexist country, but Hillary [Clinton] is running for president. And you can have a man I’ve known for a while, Donald Trump, who can freely speak his mind whether people like it or not. [There’s] no place like this on earth.”

On whether he would be willing to share his knowledge as a businessman to get this country moving forward again:

Gene: “Sure, but I’m not a political person. You know, if you’re my friend and your breath stinks, the least I could as your friend is to tell you your breath stinks and you’ve overweight. That’s not a criticism; you’re trying to help. If I can’t tell my friend his breath stinks and he’s too fat, which is dangerous to his health, why call yourself a friend?

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KISS’ Paul Stanley talks vinyl, Spotify, ‘the injustice of the internet’

Mike Mettler | Digital Trends

the-audiophile-paul-stanley-kiss-0003-1200x0It’s a battle cry any member of the KISS Army will instantly recognize.  “You wanted the best, you got the best!” KISS has been unstoppable for over 40 years and counting, and they just upped their game yet again with KISS Rocks Vegas (out now in various formats via Eagle Vision), a live chronicle of the band’s incendiary residency at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas in November 2014 in the midst of the band’s 40th Anniversary World Tour.

“Technology has advanced to the point now where you can really be fully enveloped by and in the center of the chaos that can be KISS from time to time,” frontman/vocalist/guitarist/eternal Starchild Paul Stanley told Digital Trends of the Dolby Atmos KISS Rocks Vegas experience.

Take it from me, the full-bore full-channel assault of KISS Rocks Vegas is most definitely best experienced via Blu-ray and the mega-multichannel Dolby Atmos option, so you can get the absolute complete effect of the set design, the band’s always mind-boggling pyrotechnics, and the glory of each KISS member’s chosen “armor.” Bassist/vocalist/The Demon himself, Gene Simmons, never fails to amaze with what he does and looks like onstage — especially the thunder of songs like Detroit Rock City, Lick It Up, and Black Diamond. An additional KISS Acoustic set featuring stripped-down favorites like Christine Sixteen, Hard Luck Woman, and Beth also show what guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer bring to the KISS backline.

You can enhance something with as many bombs and laser beams as you want, but a crap song is a crap song.

Want another opinion? Take it from Micki Free, the mixed-blood Cherokee/Comanche Native American guitarist/vocalist discovered by Simmons and Stanley in the ’70s who went on to play guitar with Shalamar and glam-punkers Crown of Thorns: “I knew them both really well. Those guys were my mentors in the ’70s, when I was growing up,” Free recalled. “KISS was my favorite band as a boy, you know? Paul Stanley is such a great performer, too — I aspired to dance like he did onstage. He was that guy. I wanted to play guitar like Hendrix, and dance like Paul Stanley.”

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Deuce – KISS – Guitar solo lesson

Rhys Lett | Eastern Suburbs School of Music

Learn to play the guitar solo in Deuce by KISS. Lesson taught by Rhys Lett, guitarist of KISS tribute act Dressed to Chill. For more information about guitar…

I am a guitar teacher from Melbourne Australia. My school is the Eastern Suburbs School of Music, our website can be found at I have written a few KISS based articles for the site in the BLOG section. I also play in an acoustic KISS tribute act Dressed to Chill.