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KISS, and how much they've meant to me...

Posted on 01/17/2013
...Wow. They've been sitting down in a chair, staring at a mirror and putting on that make-up, most evenings during the week, for 40 years...!!! (Albeit with a brief hiatus). The kid who sat in front of me in 6th grade, whenever he opened the top of his desk to get inside, I always STARED at all of the pictures he had of KISS taped underneath there. Then I begged and pleaded for ALIVE!, because I'd heard so much about it...and then I got it for Xmas, along with the soundtracks for Grease and Saturday Night Fever...and after 6 months of ALIVE after school every night, I bought a used Gibson SG (It said on the back of the album that "KISS uses Gibson guitars and Pearl drums because they want the best.") So, I HAD to buy a Gibson. And I bought a Peavey Decade amplifier, because it was the smallest amplifier they sold, and it had a unique, fantastic distortion all it's own. And I've studied them, I've taken advice from them, I've learned that you can't always believe everything you see or hear from them...and I learned that it's IMPORTANT, if you're in a band, to walk out, make eye contact with everyone, wink and smile a lot and play smooth, well rehearsed music. Put on the best show you can. Be cool, without over-doing it, and you'll be remembered fondly by many of the people who paid $3 cover to be there, that night. I just read Ace Frehley and then Peter Criss' memoirs, and I know now that there really WERE a LOT of smoke and mirrors involved in KISS over the years. Many different kinds used in many different ways. But when you're 12, that stuff is way above you. You want to feel the sweat, run around and jump across parts of the stage, hear the roar of the crowd, close your eyes and play the guitar parts you wrote yourself and can play flawlessly, and get lost in the music for a moment. You want to have the girls waiting at your hotel room door, and you want to get paid to play your guitar...you wanna be COOL... If you loved KISS, you probably wanted to BE a rock star...and what better tutors than Criss, Frehley, Stanley and Simmons...
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