Paul Stanley Reddit AMA: 5 things we learned from KISS guitarist in fan Q&A

Music Times

It’s a big year for KISS and the band’s vocalist/guitarist Paul Stanley. Not only are he and his bandmates getting inducted in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, but they’re also gearing up for a co-headlining tour with Def Leppard.

Today (April 7), Stanley logged onto Reddit to answer fan questions about all of the above and (for him, most importantly) his new bookFace The Music.

Here are five things we learned from Paul Stanley’s AMA:

1. Despite getting inducted this year as a member of KISS, he’s not too fond of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Stanley took the time out to bash the institution on a least two separate occasions. When asked how social media played into KISS’ ongoing legacy, he said the band and its connection with fans finally let them into the Hall. “KISS is trying to use social media as a tool to connect with fans. The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame ultimately and grudgingly had to induct us at some point. The absurdity of ignoring us was beginning to make them look ridiculous. Unfortunately, I don’t know that inducting us changes anyone’s perception of them,” he wrote.

In the next answered question (in regards to the false rumors that Chad Channing of Nirvana would be getting inducted while KISS’ Eric Carr would not), Stanley had this to say: “The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is finally being exposed for what it is. A private club of a few people misrepresenting themselves as the public.” Harsh.

2. Gene Simmons hates shellfish and is afraid of a lobster carcass.

His best-ever KISS prank involved a bit of the crustacean and a microphone. “Gene hates any kind of shellfish among other things. One night I had lobster for dinner before the show and saved the body with the tentacles on it. During a blackout between songs, I snapped it on his microphone, and when he went to sing, it was staring at him in the face. He freaked out!” Stanley wrote.

3. Despite being in a band for decades, KISS hasn’t had any punching situations.

“I’m really not a violent guy,” Stanley wrote about whether or not he every wanted to punch his bandmate Simmons in the face. “But lik all great relationships, we have had some moments where I was very angry or frustrated. Punching someone is never the solution.” Good advice for those young KISS fans.

4. He does have a favorite Def Leppard song to look forward to for the bands’ co-headlining tour.

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ACE FREHLEY Responds To PAUL STANLEY, Says His Ex-Bandmates In KISS Are His ‘Brothers In Rock And Roll’


In his long-awaited autobiography, “Face The Music: A Life Exposed”KISS guitarist/vocalist Paul Stanley wrote that former KISS members Ace Frehley (guitar) and Peter Criss (drums) once believed the band was “unfairly manipulated by money-grubbing Jews,” a reference to Paul and fellow KISS co-founding member Gene Simmons. Then, in an interview with the New York Post last week, Paul went on to say that based on his history with the guys, he believes Ace and Peter are anti-Semitic.

VH1 Radio Network‘s Dave Basner caught up with Frehley earlier today (Monday, April 7) and asked him for a comment on Stanley‘s latest claims.

“We say good things about each other and we say bad things about each other [in our memoirs], but it is what it is,” Frehley said. “It’s rock and roll. I mean, if all we did was pat each other on the back for every book, people would say, ‘That’s a boring book.’ They want to hear the dirt. I’ve got plenty of dirt.”

Frehley, who himself released an autobiography called “No Regrets” in 2011, is working on a follow-up book and spoke to VH1 Radio Network about whether he plans on responding in it to all the latest claims by Gene Simmons and Paul.

“I’ve been working on my second book since once I finished ‘No Regrets’; I already started writing stories for the next one,” he said. “I mean, I could write five books on my life, it’s that interesting.”

He continued: “I don’t want to go tit for tat, because that’s not what I’m about. I like to lay it out and just tell it like it is, you know. If my memory isn’t as good as somebody else’s, so be it.”

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Kiss – Paul Stanley Refused To Be A Part Of Kiss Pal’s Reality Show

Wenn | Contact Music

Kiss star Paul Stanley refused to appear on bandmate Gene Simmons‘ long-running reality Tvshow because he hated the programme.

The rocker tells the current issue of Rolling Stone magazine that he received many requests to join his friend on Tv during Gene Simmons Family Jewels’ run, but always turned him down.

He says, “It wasn’t reality. To create a life that isn’t accurate and for me to be a part of it, or to help you promote something that I think is questionable… and, quite honestly, waste my time…?

“You’re missing out on living a real life if you’re filming a fake one.”

Paul Stanley Accuses Ace Frehley and Peter Criss of Anti-Semitic and Racist Behavior

Bruce Knight | Ultimate Classic Rock

Kiss singer-guitarist Paul Stanley‘s new memoir, ‘Face the Music: A Life Exposed,‘ includes some new and unpleasant allegations about his former bandmates Ace Frehley and Peter Criss.

It’s no secret that Stanley and fellow founding Kiss member Gene Simmons were unhappy that Frehley’s and Criss’ substance-abuse issues adversely affected the group, but, in the book, Paul also claims that Ace and Peter were anti-Semitic.

According to the New York Post, Stanley writes in his memoir that he believed Frehley and Criss both “felt powerless and impotent when faced with the tireless focus, drive and ambition of me and Gene. As a result, the two of them tried to sabotage the band — which, as they saw it, was unfairly manipulated by [us] money-grubbing Jews.”

Stanley also reveals that Frehley collected Nazi memorabilia, and claims that he observed Criss engage in racist behavior by mocking waiters at Chinese restaurants during the group’s early days.

Paul confirmed to the New York Post that he did indeed believe Frehley and Criss were anti-Semitic, saying, “It’s based on years and years of interactions. It’s not pulled out of thin air.”

Stanley didn’t reserve his criticism for just Ace and Peter; he also leveled some negative comments at Simmons. Paul reveals that Gene wasn’t invited to his 2005 wedding because of Simmons’ anti-marriage views at the time. He told Simmons at the time, “When you insult and demean people who get married and ridicule or dismiss the idea of marriage, you have no place at a wedding.” Gene, of course, has since changed his tune, walking down the aisle with his longtime partner Shannon Tweed in 2011.

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Why Paul Stanley Told Slash: ‘Go Fuck Yourself’

Matthew Wilkening | Ultimate Classic Rock

Paul Kane / Kevin Winter

Paul Kane / Kevin Winter

Paul Stanley says he had to teach Slash a pretty harsh lesson in rock and roll diplomacy back at the start of the Guns N’ Roses guitarist’s meteoric rise to fame.

In a story from his first-ever autobiography, ‘Face the Music: A Life Exposed,’ the Kiss frontman recalls the time he was asked to meet with Guns N’ Roses, who were about to start work on their ‘Appetite for Destruction‘ album. He wasn’t all that impressed on first sight, describing guitarist Izzy Stradlin as “unconscious, with drool coming out of the side of his mouth,” and Slash as “half-comatose.”

Stanley says he showed Slash how to tune his guitar in the five-string open-G method preferred by Keith Richards, and offered to put him in touch with people who could get him free guitars. Paul then went to go see Guns N’ Roses play two small L.A. club shows, which he describes as “stupendous.”

The second of those nights is apparently where trouble began between the two guitar heroes. “They weren’t happy with the guy mixing their sound,” Stanley recalls, “And Slash asked me out of the blue to help out. Decades later, Slash’s recollections of the night would be faulty at best. He liked to pretend I had dared to meddle with their sound.”

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Kane Roberts talks Alice Cooper, KISS

Mitch Lafon

Guitarist Kane Roberts goes One On One with Mitch Lafon and discusses his tenure with Alice Cooper, his use of steroids in the ’80s, his solo career, working with Bob Ezrin, writing with Paul Stanley for KISS’ Revenge album, Desmond Child, his Unsung Radio album, his work with Angra’s Kiko Loureiro, Kip Winger and more much.

Producer Toby Wright talks KISS Carnival of Souls album

Mitch Lafon

Producer Toby Wright sits down One On One with Mitch Lafon (rock journalist) to discuss his work on the KISS album ‘that fell through the cracks’ – CARNIVAL OF SOULS. As Toby walks the listener through the minutiae of that late ’90s album, he also talks about working with Alice In Chains and Metallica. Toby had engineering duties on Metallica’s …And Justice For All album and explains what exactly happened to the much talked about (and often maligned) “bass sound.”

Hall of Fame CEO Says Kiss’ ‘Entire Body of Work’ Isn’t Being Inducted

Dave Lifton | Ultimate Classic Rock

Paul Kane

Paul Kane

With the decision to induct only the original lineup of Kiss into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame serving as a point of controversy, the Hall’s President and CEO has sought to clarify their position. In a new interview, he says that the group isn’t being inducted for their “entire body of work.”

“With Kiss,” Joel Peresman told Rolling Stone. “There wasn’t a single person we spoke to that didn’t feel the reason these guys were being inducted was because of the four original members. It’s an incredibly unique situation. I can’t think of another band, outside of GWAR, that has members that are dressed up in costumes. You basically have these new members that are replicating exactly and playing the music that was created by the two other members that are being inducted.”

For all the justification, Peresman’s actions have, instead of providing a platform for a reconciliation between the Gene Simmons/Paul Stanley and Ace Frehley/Peter Criss factions, made that divide even bigger. The two camps have traded jabs back and forth ever since the news was announced, but possibly no words harsher than when Stanley branded the Hall as “tainted, corrupt and distorted.” Peresman responded to Stanley’s accusation with a small degree of diplomacy while further explaining his position.

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The KISS story-behind-the-story revealed in epic Rolling Stone article

Keith Spera | The Times-Piayune

Danny Bourque

Danny Bourque

Want to know the back story of why KISS won’t perform during the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on April 10? Read Brian Hiatt’s 7,600-word, comprehensive cover story on the band/soap opera in the current issue of Rolling Stone.

Founding bassist Gene Simmons and singer/guitarist Paul Stanley, who have ruled the KISS empire for 40 years, have made clear they won’t play because the Hall of Fame will only induct the band’s four original members. That undercuts the legitimacy – and marketability – of the current roster, which features guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer. Hall of Fame officials, meanwhile, have made clear that, in their opinion, only the original four should be inducted.

For Thayer and Singer to perform at the induction without actually being inducted would be awkward. And Stanley and Simmons wouldn’t play without them.

Hiatt’s remarkably intimate and honest portrayal, respectful but goosed with the occasional snarky aside, makes clear why.

For four decades, Simmons and Stanley have been the sober, hyper-ambitious professionals who have run the band like a business, and lucratively so. Frehley and Criss long ago partied themselves out of the empire.

KISS was long snubbed by both Rolling Stone and the Hall of Fame. The band was eligible for induction 15 years ago, but wasn’t voted in until this year. And despite massive sales, scandalous behavior and a vast, loyal legion of fans, Rolling Stone declined to put KISS on the cover until now.

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Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready Talks Kiss Obsession and Influence

Mike McCready | Rolling Stone

mccready-306v-1396461006I remember being on a school bus in sixth grade in 1976 with my friend Rick Friel, who eventually played in my high school band Shadow. He had a lunch box that had Kiss on it. “What is that?” Then he played me some music and I was hooked immediately. Then I had a Kiss room and I started playing guitar. They were the Beatles to me. They are the reason I started playing music.

Kiss Forever: 40 Years of Feuds and Fury

They were larger than life, with this intangible thing that I basically think about all the time. I was Peter Criss for Halloween in 1976 (pictured, left). I loved Alive!. ”Black Diamond” blew my mind. Ace Frehley came onstage and did it with us at Madison Square Garden a few years ago, which was a total high watermark in my life. When I was 13, I never thought in a million years that I would even talk to him; I’d probably pass out. And here I am playing with him!

Pearl Jam sit down and have conversations about Kiss all the time on tour. My band used to do “C’Mon and Love Me.” Matt Cameron played in a Kiss tribute band when he was 14. They got so big around San Diego that they got a cease and desist order from Casablanca Records. Jeff Ament used to play “She” in his band Deranged Diction. There’s a Kiss through-line to a lot of the music that came out of Seattle, and it hasn’t been talked about a lot.

I got mocked for it a lot. When you’re really young, dating girls and trying to explain Kiss, they just look at you like you’re kind of crazy. I think they got so big in the Seventies and were such a phenomenon – they did the Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park movie, the solo records – some people only know the merchandising stuff. But if you listen to the music, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley were really into the Beatles and you can hear weird Beatles harmonies going on. I’ve talked to Paul a few times, which is always a trip, and he talks about how he likes Humble Pie and Steve Marriott. So they’re drawing from pretty cool influences. And there is a power pop thing to some of their stuff that’s immediately catchy.

Ace was their firecracker, their dynamite. He’s what took them over the top with the feel he put into his leads. I really gravitated towards his vibrato. My lead for “Alive” is based on “She,” and that’s based on “Five to One” by the Doors. I remember we were in Surrey, England. I thought about it like, “I’m going to approach this like Ace did on ‘She.’” And I remember the chord pattern that Stone [Gossard] wrote lent it to that kind of a descending pattern. So I kind for went with it. And then I improvised from there.

18 Things You Learn Hanging Out With Kiss

I’ve been watching the Hall of Fame situation play out. My thoughts are: I saw Heart play with their original lineup, and I went and jammed with them when they got inducted in the Hall of Fame. And then they got up with their new lineup, and everybody loved it. And it can be done, and I wish they would do it. It just makes the fans happy. And that’s the point, in my mind.


KISS Underground’s John Jeffrey – interview April 2014

Mitch Lafon

John Jeffrey created and ran the KISS fanzine, KISS Underground, from 1987-2007. He sat down One On One with rock journalist, Mitch Lafon, to discuss making of and inspiration for a fan generated magazine in the pre-Internet days (when information was, at times, difficult to come by). He walks the listener through stories of how content was generated, how he was fed information from the band, and comments on his interviews with every band member to ever have been in KISS (including Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Peter Criss, Ace Frehley, Tommy Thayer, Eric Singer, Eric Carr, Bruce Kulick, Mark St. John and Vinnie Vincent).


KISStorian – Bob Rice talks KISS, Spokane ’74

David Ashdown | KISStorian

Screefn Shot 2014-04-03 at 8.45.49 PMKISStorian takes a 70′s deep dive with renown rock & roll radio dj & musician BOB RICE: >>>> How did you end up going to the KISS show in Spokane in May of ’74?  I’m glad you asked this question as I love telling the story. I was 14 years of age and playing bass in my first rock band, Angel Painted Lady. Boasting two guitarists, with one of them doubling on trombone, we also had a trumpet player and a flutist. Our drummer doubled on vibraphone, and I doubled on percussion. This was my first dream band. We performed a mixture of rock, fusion, funk, and jazz, covering the music of David Bowie, Jethro Tull, Alice Cooper, The James Gang, Chicago Transit Authority, Maynard Ferguson, and Chase, as well as playing our own original music. Our lead guitarist/vocalist often wore make up, when we performed. We always played to packed rooms, which I thought was odd at the time, not that I complained. I am pinching myself, as I write this, as all of the members of Angel Painted Lady went on to create professional, if not satisfying musical careers. It was the lead guitarist, the one who wore the make up, that told me that I NEEDED to see this band, KISS, because he believed that they were going to be “the next big thing”.

What are your most enduring impressions from the night?  I arrived at the concert early, which was normal for me, as I always liked to scope out all of the gear on the stage and possibly catch the eye of one of the musicians who might still be on or near the stage. There were very few people in the venue, with the majority being employees and stage and sound crew, and hardly any concert goers. While I was eyeballing how the venue was set up, one of the crew struck up a conversation with me. After inviting me to check out the house mix, we made our way to the stage … talk about an instant high!

Did you have any pre-show expectations? Yes, it was their first appearance in Spokane and their first official tour. Going into the concert I knew very little about the band aside for the fact that they wore make up and dressed in costume portraying individual characters. In fact I have to admit that I had not heard any of their music before seeing them. In respect to their show, I did have very high expectations based on my guitarist’s adamant recommendation that I see them. They did not disappoint me … they fucking blew me away! When they hit the stage it was like a bomb dropping. I looked around me and everyone was wide eyed and picking their jaws up from off of the floor. Within 20 min. of their set I realized that Ace was the true glue in the band. His ability to create bedrock guitar riffs while seamlessly lacing his lead lines around the other player’s parts, and his riffs, found me standing stupefied, laughing and shaking my head in awe.

Was there already a KISS Army to speak or did the band have to win the crowd over?  There was not a KISS Army, in fact it was very apparent that most of those who were there had come to see Manfred Mann’s Earth Band. By the end of KISS’s set they had won over everyone who was in The Kennedy Pavilion. I heard later that The Earth Band was a little reluctant to take the stage after KISS’s set. The last time this had happened was when Led Zepplin opened for The Vanilla Fudge 4-1/2 years earlier in the same venue. I feel as though I personally witnessed history being made in Spokane that night.

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Strange Ways podcast #18

Strange Ways

285>_9427068Episode 18 finds Jody Havenot, Rachel Ann, and Slade Frehley chatting about all things KISS!!! We cover many topics, including our thoughts on the KISS/Def Lep tour, a Phantom of the Park remake, The forthcoming Ace Frehley record, KISS 2.0, to name a few..Check it out KISS ARMY!!! And as always, thanks for listening, and keep on rockin’!

All current and surviving KISS members, (minus Vinnie Vincent), to attend Hall of Fame induction

Brian Hiatt | Rolling Stone

Dave Hogan

Dave Hogan

Current Kiss guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer aren’t going to be inducted with the band at this year’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony, and they won’t perform, either – but they’re showing up, nevertheless.

Kiss Forever: read our full Kiss cover story now

Gene Simmons confirmed to Rolling Stone via e-mail that he and Paul Stanley have invited Singer and Thayer to sit at their table during the April 10th ceremony, along with guitarist Bruce Kulick, who played in Kiss during its make-up-free period, from 1984 to 1996. “The fact that they want me at their table means the world,” says Kulick.

With founding members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss also on hand, that means all surviving Kiss members will be at Brooklyn, New York’s Barclays Center, except for hard-to-track-down guitarist Vinnie Vincent. “He’s kind of the Howard Hughes of Kiss,” says Kulick.

Simmons and Stanley are upset with the Hall of Fame’s decision to induct only the four original members. “Tommy has been in the band 10 years,” Stanley told Rolling Stone in interviews for our current Kiss cover story. “Eric’s been in the band 20 years.” (Minus a five-year interlude when the original band reunited.) “The idea of no one being even a candidate for induction into the Hall of Fame other than the four original guys is hogwash.”

Not surprisingly, Kulick, Thayer and Singer all endorse that sentiment. “Even if I was an outsider,” says Thayer, “I would say that all of the guys that have been in Kiss over 40 years, all of the members, should be inducted into the Hall of Fame.”


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How KISS’ Reunion Almost Fell Apart: Preview Paul Stanley’s Memoir

Rolling Stone

Fin Costello

Fin Costello

Paul Stanley is the last member of the original Kiss lineup to pen a memoir, but his upcoming book Face The Music: A Life Exposed is still an essential read for all fans of the pioneering hard rock band. For the first time ever, the Starchild reveals that he was born with one ear, causing horrendous emotional pain. He also gets into great detail about the wild early days of Kiss, his battles with all three original members of the band and how he carried the group all through the 1980s while longtime partner Gene Simmons was largely engaged with other projects. In this exclusive excerpt — which comes alongside the band’s first-ever appearance on Rolling Stone‘s cover — Stanley gives his side of the tumultuous Kiss “Farewell Tour” in 2000. 

Peter posted a sign every day counting down the number of days left on the Farewell Tour. He started painting a teardrop below his eye. I thought it made him look like Emmett Kelly’s famous Weary Willie character, the tragic clown who toured with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. And as for the rest of his makeup, it was as if he had forgotten how to do it. He started to look like a panda bear, with big rectangles around his eyes.

The tour was horrible. Constant drudgery and misery. We spent all of our energy trying to coax Peter and Ace out of their hotel rooms. Ace sucker-punched Tommy at one of the shows. Peter had his usual handbook detailing how hotel staff had to treat him and which windows had to be covered with tinfoil and all that. There was no reasoning with either of them. We never knew if we’d make it to a show on time, and once we got onstage we never knew whether we’d get through the show. I mean, if a guy has trouble putting on his makeup, how is he going to play? Not surprisingly, the shows could be pretty awful.

I was angry at Peter and Ace for being disrespectful toward everything we had accomplished and everything the fans were giving us. I bought into the idea that this really was it. The end of Kiss. There was no place to go. it was unbearable.

We were stuck in a rut musically as well – basically playing the same 17 songs we’d taught them for the initial reunion. This was the third tour with the same set list. Peter and Ace just couldn’t master any more. The needle was already into the red. I had to come up with nonsensical interview responses to questions about why we were playing the same songs. I couldn’t just say, “because Peter and Ace can’t learn any others.”

One night during a show Doc McGhee tried to get my attention from the side of the stage, gesturing up at me and holding his nose.


“You stink!” he yelled. I walked over to him during a break between songs. “What did you say?”

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KISS’s Simmons and Stanley Talk Cocks, Cattle and ‘The Elder’

Mathew Wilkening | Ultimate Classic Rock

Jason MerrittKiss founders Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley examine their personal relationship, compare sexual conquests and agree on their band’s biggest mistake in a brand new interview.

Simmons gets the ball rolling by using semi-anatomical metaphors to explain what role he and his bandmate of over 40 years play in the ongoing success of Kiss. If you were somehow expecting subtlety from the author of lyrics such as “For goodness sakes / My snake’s alive and it’s ready to bite,” you’re in for a surprise.

‘Paul is the soul of Kiss and I’m… the cock.’ Simmons tells Classic Rock magazine. ‘Paul is much more emotional, and I’m drier. Paul will go see romantic movies, I’ll throw up at them.” Drummer Eric Singer adds outside perspective to the dynamic: ‘Gene loves the sound of his own voice, we all know that. But nothing happens in Kiss unless Paul Stanley says it does.”

When asked the most burning question anyone can be presented with — who’s slept with more women, him or Gene — Stanley replies, “I think I had more that would qualify as women. With him you were also throwing in cattle. But we both did very well. Gene likes to stand up and say: ‘Look at me, and look at what I’ve done.’ And that’s okay. But who had more? I don’t know. He certainly had ones that I didn’t want.”

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Roman Fernandez talks BILL AUCOIN & KISS (March 2014)

Mitch Lafon

Former KISS manager Bill Aucoin’s longtime partner, Roman Fernandez, goes one on one with Mitch Lafon (rock journalist). The pair discuss Bill Aucoin’s legacy and managing of KISS as well as the material in the “KISS Vault’. Moreover, the two talked about Lyn Christopher, music sampling, bands Roman currently manages including the Spider Rockets and the Super Fuzz, what it takes to make it in the business today including the importance of college radio and much more.

For more visit:


Bill Aucoin’s page:

Lyn Christopher:

Spider Rockets:

Super Fuzz:

This interview was recorded the evening of March 29th 2014 using SKYPE.

Mitch Lafon