KISS is 40, I'm 47...enough said!
Posted on 01/23/2013I had recently received my first rock-n-roll vinyl album, Grand Funk Railroad Live, given to me by a friend’s older brother who had grown tired of it. One day I was talking with a new neighbor, whom was slightly older than I, when he brought up the idea of trading albums. It didn’t matter to me, as long as I was getting two for two, as my album was a double live album. He agreed, and went inside his house and returned with another double live album. That’s where the similarities would end however… Alive! was nothing like my first album. It felt different, smelled different, looked different, and God did it ever SOUND different. I would never be the same from the moment I put that album on my brother’s turntable (I didn’t have my own yet). Add to this the first time I saw the ‘Gods of Thunder’, on the Paul Lynde Halloween Special. I can still remember my parents saying the world had officially gone to Hell, as I inched closer and closer to the TV screen. They were like nothing I, or anyone else had ever seen, and I simply couldn’t get enough. There are those who say their lives changed the first time they heard The Beatles, and while I can completely understand the meaning of the statement, I personally find it grossly over-exaggerated. The “Fab Four” I’m talking about chewed-up, partially digested, and spit out the “mop-topped Brits”. The Demon, Starchild, Spaceman, and Cat were full-blown, real-life super heroes. A visual spectacle, and audio bombastic symphony to be matched by no one. It was 1979 when I first witnessed them live. In what can only be described as an out-of-body experience, I pushed my 14 year-old body to the 2nd row of Tingley Coliseum (Albuquerque, NM), with no regard for life or limb. There, I came face-to-face with the ‘Demon’ himself and welcomed the bloody shower that spewed from his seven-inch tongue. An ‘Unholy’ experience of Biblical proportions to be sure, as I was baptized into what I refer to as a ‘KISS Life’. Once you’re in, truly in, you’ll never be out.