LEGENDARY ROCKERS TO ROCK CLIPSAL
March 02, 2013
In the photo: KISS stars Tommy Thayer (left), Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons surprise fans at the Star of Greece restaurant in Port Willunga. Picture: Bianca De Marchi

BY Matt Gilbertson

FOR 40 years they've been famous for being able to rock 'n' roll all night and party every day.

But music legends KISS enjoyed a day off in Adelaide yesterday in anything but typical rock fashion, taking in the famed McLaren Vale food and wine region before headlining tonight's Clipsal 500 closing concert.

"It's the perfect way to spend our day off in Adelaide," said lead guitarist Tommy Thayer, 52, speaking exclusively to the Sunday Mail.

"We went to Mollydooker Winery in the morning, even though none of us are big drinkers, and we're just taking it easy."

Joined by Paul Stanley, 61, and Gene Simmons, 63, Thayer and the rest of the KISS entourage, including Simmons' wife, the former Playboy Playmate and actress Shannon Tweed, then headed to Port Willunga's popular Star of Greece restaurant - surprising fellow diners and happily posing for photos and signing autographs.

Among those lucky enough to bump into the rock legends was Heath Newberry, 36, of Seacliff.

He was having a quick drink with his groomsmen before his wedding later in the day.

"They pulled up in their cars, Gene spotted us in our suits and came up and said `who's the lucky guy, then?"' he said. "They're actually really easygoing guys and were happy to have a photo."

KISS rounded off the day with lunch at the Victory Hotel, Sellicks Beach, where they enjoyed rib-eye steaks and South Australia's famous whiting.

The band will perform new songs from their new album Monster, as well as classic hits, including I Was Made For Lovin' You and Detroit Rock City, in front of thousands at tonight's after-race concert. Asked if they were excited to close the four-day Clipsal event, Simmons replied: "Well, we better be, we've no other choice but to get excited.
KISS arrive

KISS member Gene Simmons with actress wife Shannon Tweed, arriving at Adelaide Airport. Picture: Bianca De Marchi,

"We're ready to blow some s ... up."

Stanley was also happy to share some make-up tips, telling fans that, when done properly, the famous KISS drag is actually quite easy to remove.

"We only use the best products," he said. "The make-up takes two hours to get on - but it takes two minutes to remove."