Gene Simmons is greedy
Gene Simmons - The Autobiography
Well, as a creator of one of the biggest bands in the world that shamelessly throws merchandise shit around, you can make one important and present your life on a meager 267 pages.
Everything in English, everything is great. Come on. The first six pages he ponders a little about life in general and how he sees it. It starts already, that he pays homage to his mommy from front to back, which doesn't stop until the end of the book. He says that he fucked 4,600 women and always made Polaroids of them. But still he's a great father. He loves his children and the mother of his children more than anything. But he doesn't want to get married because he thinks marriage is abysmal shit. You should be with someone because you want to, not because it's written on a piece of paper.
Then he strikes a hell of a lot. He was born in Israel on August 25, 1949. His name was Chaim Witz and his parents were poor but happy. Daddy pissed off at some point, Mommy was always there. He learns how to pile up and so on. In any case, he noticed at a young age that it's all about power and might.
At ten he likes to play cowboy and is fascinated by superhero comics. Most of all he liked the bad and dark. A little later he became a TV junkie who watches these superheroes all the time. Then he moved to America with Mommy and was called Gene Klein and has the usual immigrant problems. Whenever stars were on TV anywhere, he was overwhelmed by some kind of power that made the girls scream. He thought it was good. Well who doesn't?
Then as a teen he thought the Beatles were cool and at some point started making music. Then he found out that the ladies stood on his long tongue. He later found out what you can do with it.
After a mere 58 pages he is already at his twentieth year (yawn), shagging here and there and finally playing in bands. That's when he met Paul Stanley in a very unspectacular manner, and both of them had unusually large egos. And both wanted to bring their little band forward. What followed were fucking concerts where nobody went. You know. At 22, the two were looking for a long time to join a band that would later become KISS. They wanted to create something really big, unique. At first they were made up all white, so it looked like shit. Line-up change trallala. In any case, the two were real bad guys. Earn money during the day with shitty jobs, tinker with the band in the evening. Can of course also be exaggerated, after all, it's a book by a multimillionaire, but that's how it is written. To make the name sound cooler, he calls himself Gene Simmons from then on. I would never be Gene Klein again.
In any case, a lot of guitarists played. At some point an asshole came in and started playing, even though it wasn't his turn yet. Gene and Paul have always been decent people, good business people with good manners. They have nothing to do with any rock star behavior. And then such an unkempt boy comes in, looks like he is out of the gutter, without any manners. Gene complains that he is playing better now, otherwise he is thrown out on edge. You audition twice in the “Deuce”, the third time he pulls off a god's solo and he's already set. When asked what his name is, he replies: "Paul Frehley." Gene says: "We can't have two Pauls in the band!" Then he: "Call me Ace!" Then Gene: "Call me King!" I wasn't joking. Neither what hey.
At least with Peter Criscuola there was the four-man band. Pretty early on Paul and I were aware that we had just met two types of people that we had never been around before. They drank and were attracted to violence.
Ace used to just drink and never drag a box onto the stage. A really boozy, lazy piece of shit. hot! All his life he couldn't have been able to do anything but drink and play cool guitar. God! Besides, he never came on time. So that's exactly what you really don't need in a band.
But at that time he was the only capable guitarist available. And even if it's not exactly in the book, you can tell that no honest rock band should be made there, but a product that has been planned down to the last detail. The product KISS. So the exact opposite of what all bands on earth want. Gene says of Ace: “It was a nightmare from the very first day ... it was never about friends, it was never about hanging out. It never was, and to this day it still isn't. "It's a shame actually.
So in 1972 the name, the styling, the idea, the concept, a couple of great songs and so on was finally there. After endless auditions for record companies and small piss concerts, where there was always trouble with Ace, it started. KISS set out to conquer the world.
Gene supposedly never drank or had anything to do with drugs. Yes, of course, and I am the Pope. But he emphasizes it again and again, so that you could buy the shit off him. In any case, he always passed the time fucking from the start. Because he is yes. So in 1974 the first record came out and the guys were touring the whole time and he was hearing around. Two years later they were superstars and sold out stadiums. Who would have thought? Fighting with Ace, with managers, and with God and the world is the order of the day, but Gene and Paul always wanted more. Aim higher, more money, more fame, more power, more women. Then he will be denounced as a Satanist, which is nonsense. And he is convinced that he invented the little finger-index finger greeting because he always holds his pick with his middle and ring finger. He taught himself to play the bass. And I suspect he has a correspondingly pathetic technique.
He tells an incredible number of stories, sometimes interesting, sometimes not. He's fucked many models, including Liv Tyler's mother, a model who was very friendly with a number of rock stars.
The third record came out in 1977 and sold a million times casually. That's pretty OK. KISS took advantage of all marketing opportunities, including a Kiss comic. The boys put their blood into the ink. Yeah In 1978 he met and fell in love with Cher. But for God's sake he doesn't want to commit himself. Better to fuck around in the area. He still thinks of family and children as shit. That doesn't change until much later.
Ace is getting more and more drugged and drunk, the band members have been hanging on for years and are tired of each other and the solo album shit is starting to take hold.
In 1980 Peter was kicked out, but of course only for the sake of his own health, and Paul Caravello joined KISS, who was once renamed Eric Carr. For the first time, KISS presented themselves unmasked. Good for your career. Ace just pooped and Eddie Van Halen offered to play at KISS, please !! But Gene wanted an unknown guitarist because Eddie was already known and he didn't know which character he could have taken on at KISS.
Tours, problems, hiccups, shagging, Mommy was always the best, stinking rich, and in the beginning / middle of the glorious 80s Gene also had to present his face in films, including with Tom Selleck alias Magnum in "Runaway". In 1984 he met Shannon Tweed, on the property of Playboy father Hugh Heffner. God bless him. Shannon was awesome. Outwardly you couldn't complain, and she let him do what he wanted. No shouting, no “when are you coming back?”. Perfect!
In 1985 “Asylum” came out and of course it was easily platinum. Oh God, what does the world cost? Gene, Paul, Eric Carr and Bruce Kulick without make-up in the stream of hair-metal bands.
Shannon is pregnant. In any case, it wasn't planned by him. Gene can't think of anything else, will he be such a fucking father as his own? The typical I-will-soon-be-dad worries: Will I be good, can I even take care of others, how do you actually change a diaper? Then he always writes many pages about a completely new attitude towards life - being daddy. In any case, it sounds very convincing and moves you to tears. He is present at the birth, cuts the umbilical cord, holds him in his arms for the first time, does not want to give him away and swears to himself to do everything for the little one and to fight for him, even if he dies in the process. He's never been so happy and can't even imagine what it was like when he didn't want to have children. But getting married is still not because shit. That's why he insists that Shannon shouldn't be portrayed as his wife.
This is followed by so-called KISS conventions, where KISS first play a few pieces unplugged and then answer questions from the fans. With this they are supposedly kicking off the wave of MTV Unplugged. At one of these conventions, a female fan recounts that her boyfriend recently died and asked her to put a kiss plate in the grave. She would never have understood how such loyalty can come about, but since she met so many nice, KISS obsessed people at the convention, she understands. Then she collapsed. The entire hall was dead silent. And Gene emphasizes once again that KISS fans are the best ever, and that he would never disappoint them. Blah.
Then came the huge Reunion tour at the end of the 90s. Again the old stress like 20 years ago with Ace, and not least because of this he is of the opinion that KISS have never been so bad musically. Some people never change. Despite worries about whether everything will work out, everything works much better than planned. Media attention, full stadiums, and even more embarrassing merchandise. I'm here to tell you it's all good. We don't hide behind that mask. We worked hard. Bands have come out and said that we're corporate while they have integrity, and they can point fingers, but the IRS makes no distinction. When you make money, it's called earned income. As a rock band, you are business, and you have to seize every opportunity to promote your product.
Disarmingly honest, huh? But also greedy for money. Can one now argue dead and philosophize whether that is good or not.
But he also believes that KISS never reached their full potential because the band was never a unit.
In any case, he makes several clear statements about playing old songs. "... the most satisfying part is still getting up on a stage and playing KISS songs that fans have come to love, from" Strutter "to" Deuce "to" Rock and Roll All Nite "."
And his two children, Nicholas and Sophie, can say that both parents were on the cover of Playboy before. After all.
And he speaks admonishing words against drugs, even if he emphasizes that everyone should do what he wants, and that he is not a protector of anyone and so on. But he says he's seen drugs obscure one's ability to make intelligent decisions.
In any case, the book reads totally shit at first, but then it gets more and more interesting, and in the end you see the whole KISS thing, and thus the whole rock and roll thing, with different eyes. He seems to be honest about everything, but first and foremost he's a businessman.
Someday soon, just after the final chords of "Rock and Roll all Nite" ring out on the Shea Stadium stage, I will pick up my bass and exit stage right ... and playing the final show will be bittersweet ... "
Anyway, I'm glad I read the book through. First and foremost, because I can finally hear something else besides KISS. Although who wants that?
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