08/18/2016

KISS brings Freedom to Rock Tour to state fair on Friday

By Kelley Simms / www.desmoinesregister.com

KISS’s Freedom to Rock Tour means just that.

Every night, KISS honors a hometown military hero, as they will do when it plays the Grandstand at the Iowa State Fair Friday at 8 p.m.

In addition, KISS will hire a current-serving member of the National Guard or Reserve force to be a “Roadie for the Day” for each of its scheduled 32 U.S. concerts, including the Des Moines show.

“Freedom to Rock? Yeah, it’s another opportunity for us to not only champion what we do, but to champion the people who make everyday life possible for all of us,” vocalist/guitarist Paul Stanley said. “There are people who sacrificed beyond our comprehension to give us that freedom, and secure that freedom. We make sure that we not only honor our military, but we bring them to the stage to make sure that they’re in people’s consciousness.”

In partnership with Hiring Our Heroes and Veteran Tickets Foundation, KISS will also donate a limited number of tickets to veterans, as well as making available discounted tickets for them and their family.

A typical KISS concert is a spectacular audio and visual experience, jam-packed with theatrics, explosions, confetti, lasers and loud rock ‘n’ roll. Even after 40-plus years of worldwide stage destroying – Stanley, along with other original member bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons, guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer – still sound as explosive as ever.

“I love what I do and I love the band,” Stanley said. “I’m very proud of our legacy and I’m also proud to go out every night and not only live up to it, but exceed people’s expectations. For me, it’s life-affirming. If you believe in what you’re doing, regardless of the odds against you, then you cannot only come out on top, but you can spend decades celebrating it.”

Stanley and Simmons’ friendship has had its bumps and bruises over the years, but when it comes to KISS, they wholeheartedly share the same passion.

“No matter what you choose to do, to make it work, you have to be pragmatic,” Stanley said. “A great partnership is usually based on knowing its limitations, and that’s the key to any relationship. We share a lot in common and our work ethic is strong. The years together have only made us more bonded; we’re family. We covet and protect fiercely KISS and have a sense of obligation to keep it at a certain level.”

The mighty KISS marketing machine also runs at a high level.

Stanley and Simmons have various investments and patents of everything from KISS coffins, to KISS pinball machines, to KISS condoms. They even co-own the Arena Football team LA KISS and have a partnership in the restaurant chain Rock & Brews, among other endeavors.

However, Stanley doesn’t wake up in the morning and say, ‘What can I make money on today?’

KISS’s Freedom to Rock Tour means just that.

Every night, KISS honors a hometown military hero, as they will do when it plays the Grandstand at the Iowa State Fair Friday at 8 p.m.

In addition, KISS will hire a current-serving member of the National Guard or Reserve force to be a “Roadie for the Day” for each of its scheduled 32 U.S. concerts, including the Des Moines show.

“Freedom to Rock? Yeah, it’s another opportunity for us to not only champion what we do, but to champion the people who make everyday life possible for all of us,” vocalist/guitarist Paul Stanley said. “There are people who sacrificed beyond our comprehension to give us that freedom, and secure that freedom. We make sure that we not only honor our military, but we bring them to the stage to make sure that they’re in people’s consciousness.”

In partnership with Hiring Our Heroes and Veteran Tickets Foundation, KISS will also donate a limited number of tickets to veterans, as well as making available discounted tickets for them and their family.

A typical KISS concert is a spectacular audio and visual experience, jam-packed with theatrics, explosions, confetti, lasers and loud rock ‘n’ roll. Even after 40-plus years of worldwide stage destroying – Stanley, along with other original member bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons, guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer – still sound as explosive as ever.

“I love what I do and I love the band,” Stanley said. “I’m very proud of our legacy and I’m also proud to go out every night and not only live up to it, but exceed people’s expectations. For me, it’s life-affirming. If you believe in what you’re doing, regardless of the odds against you, then you cannot only come out on top, but you can spend decades celebrating it.”

Stanley and Simmons’ friendship has had its bumps and bruises over the years, but when it comes to KISS, they wholeheartedly share the same passion.

“No matter what you choose to do, to make it work, you have to be pragmatic,” Stanley said. “A great partnership is usually based on knowing its limitations, and that’s the key to any relationship. We share a lot in common and our work ethic is strong. The years together have only made us more bonded; we’re family. We covet and protect fiercely KISS and have a sense of obligation to keep it at a certain level.”

The mighty KISS marketing machine also runs at a high level.

Stanley and Simmons have various investments and patents of everything from KISS coffins, to KISS pinball machines, to KISS condoms. They even co-own the Arena Football team LA KISS and have a partnership in the restaurant chain Rock & Brews, among other endeavors.

However, Stanley doesn’t wake up in the morning and say, ‘What can I make money on today?’

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