TRANSCENDS GENERATIONS
July 13, 2013
KISS fans gather outside Rexall Place prior to the concert in Edmonton, Alta. on Friday, July 12, 2013. Amber Bracken/Edmonton Sun/QMI Agency

By Dave Lazzarino / Edmonton Sun

When KISS played the Jubilee Auditorium to kick off their first ever North American tour in 1974, Jakob Losier, was decades away from being born. In fact, it’s doubtful that his mom Roxanne was alive either.

But that didn’t keep them from getting out the face-paint and costumes and heading to Rexall Place to see them play Friday.

“When I was his age I saw the KISS movie and I’ve wanted to see them ever since. He’s been waiting since he was four to come here,” said Roxanne through full Spaceman makeup as she and Jakob — a.k.a. seven-year-old KISS frontman Gene Simmons — waited for the doors to open. “They’re theatrical, they’re awesome.”

He wasn’t the only youngster who came out to get a glimpse of the aging rockers. Chris Paquin, 12, came with his older brother Brett to see the band they had listened to since they were even younger but had never seen live.

Their goal, according to the young Chris, also decked out in full Simmons regalia: “Rock and roll all night and party every day.” He was looking forward to seeing Gene Simmons with his axe guitar and for the full onslaught of hits their dad said they had been singing since they were toddlers.

First-time KISS concert-goer Tyler Chorneyko found a Paul Stanley costume at an Edmonton Halloween store complete with chest hair and couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see them live with brother Michael and friend Brian MacDonald.

“We haven’t (been to a KISS show before) but our parents have been and they brag about it a lot,” said Tyler, trying his best to keep his jet black wig from sticking to his made-up face.

“It’s a classic rock tradition.”

The family tradition could not be more clear than the bond KISS has given Kyle Hancharuk and his dad Bruce.

Dad had been listening to the band since he was only 10 and Kyle was raised on it.

“I’m glad it’s gone to the next generation. It’s good for them,” Bruce said when asked what he thinks about his son donning the full Simmons mask.

For Kyle, whose tattoo that reads “Rock and Roll Saves Lives” in jagged KISS-esque lettering is a decade fresher than his dad’s KISS themed body art, the band’s resilience is what impresses most.

“They stand out. You don’t see people doing this stuff, wearing makeup at their age. But they’re doing it for the fans, not for the money,” said Kyle.

The band has 14 more Canadian stops to promote it’s latest album, Monster, before heading to Europe.