2/22: SOME THOUGHTS ON LATEST ACE / KISS HOF NEWS.
Wow, just waking up after a very late night last night and seeing the incredible response to Ace’s announcement on my show last night that he and Peter are not being allowed to play with the original band being inducted by Gene and Paul. I was aware this was coming and have been a sounding board in many conversations with many different parties ever since the HOF was announced for Kiss. Nobody was going to say anything publicly because everyone had hoped an announcement like Ace made could be avoided and at least the original band could do a song or two. The news had to come from Ace or Peter when they were ready and Ace asked me last night if he could come on because he needed to let the fans know what they were dealing with before they purchased tickets to attend (they go on sale Monday). That’s why this happened somewhat last minute on my show late last night. Tons of fans were going to come from all over and pay God knows what to see the original band, the band being inducted. Now there is transparency as to what is going on and that there are no plans for a reunion that night. As a fellow Kiss fan and someone who has been extremely vocal about them getting into the HOF for years, I join the MANY really disappointed today. The comments section of my site has blown up about this as well as my social media. Everyone has their view here and all opinions welcome as always. My understanding is Peter will also be posting a statement soon on his site if not already and is in the same position as Ace.
A few things now that this news is out:
Gene and Paul had to know this was coming at some point. What is strange however is that Gene in his initial RS interview seemed open to playing. It was Paul who had a different take via Twitter. The word out there for a while now is Paul is calling the shots in Kiss world. Wonder how much internally they are on the same page on this? Especially with the fallout so far from fans?
Does Kiss play at all? Could be one solution to all of this. That nobody plays. That would likely maybe get Ace and Peter to at least attend. Would the HOF accept a tribute vs a Kiss performance? If current Kiss plays, as it looks now, this also puts Tommy and Eric in quite a spot. They take their orders from above but hard to imagine they would want to be in that spot. But who knows? They did it during VH1 Rock Honors, but this is much bigger and only original band going in.
I was contacted last night by the HOF producer Joel Gallen. He may come on the air with me at some point. He said the HOF position is that they are inducting the original 4 and that is who they would like to play. But the HOF will not dictate Kiss can not play if they are only willing to do it with the current band. Meaning they will accept current Kiss if that is all the owners of Kiss (Gene & Paul) are willing to do, but it is not their preference. He also said nothing was decided as to what will now happen with the Kiss performance and he was hoping maybe something could still be worked out. Seems unlikely at this point since this event is rapidly approaching, Ace and Peter would need time to reconnect and rehearse with Gene and Paul, and needless to say feelings are very bruised at the moment. My take is you will either see the current band or no version of Kiss play. Also will be interesting to see if the massive backlash from fans about no original performance pressures what happens now in some way.
I have read many comments saying Gene & Paul’s decision is ego driven. While that may play some role if you read previous posts here about this I have written I truly think it is more BUSINESS driven. When you spend over ten years selling the “it doesn’t matter who is in the band” concept, and rebranding Kiss to be a franchise where they say members don’t matter, this is not good for that master plan. Why? Because it wipes all that work away and shows it DOES matter! Look no further for proof than the MTV unplugged taping. When Ace & Peter walked out for 2 songs at the end they saw how huge it was and had to do a reunion in ’96. In other words it’s a big can of worms to open and hurts their ultimate plan to sell Kiss as a franchise where members are interchangeable. No matter what, unlike ’96 there would never be a reunion tour no matter what happened. As a fan honestly I wouldn’t even want to see it. In your 40’s possible, 60’s now, no way. A show? A few songs? Sure. But fans thinking there could be a full reunion tour? Never saw that remotely possible.
Do Ace & Peter go now? I feel this is a personal decision that only they can make. There is no right or wrong answer. It is their honor and up to how they feel if they want to stand up there even for 3 minutes. Time will tell as we get closer what they do. With performance off the table as of now they can make a decision I would think right up to a day or two before. I see both sides of it and the feelings involved and really think it is all up to how they feel.
Do Gene and Paul go? Sounds crazy but who knows? Paul clearly has no love for this process from his recent interview in RS. Do they send a statement and just check out of the whole thing? Unlikely but who knows?
Much of the blame here is being pointed toward Gene and Paul. And rightfully so in the sense that according to Ace and all sources they are the ones saying they won’t play with the original band, but the HOF has plenty of blame here also. Why? BECAUSE THEY WAITED 15 YEARS TO PUT KISS IN! Think about this; if they put Kiss in in 1999 when they first became eligible (and SHOULD have gone in), this would be a non issue! Because the original band was together then! The HOF can also be blamed for just caving to what Gene & Paul want and not considering Ace and Peter in this. If they said to Kiss (G&P) only band being inducted or nobody plays at least it would have been a level playing field. But as the HOF told me they will not do that because whoever controls the name is who they ultimately leave the performance parameters up to.
Much can still happen here. Remember although we are focused on Kiss as Kiss fans, there are 7 other bands going in that have to play as well. Although Kiss fans may dominate this event (how much so now with no reunion I don’t know), the other inductees need their moment and performance too. So who knows when it gets to budgets and stage specs what whatever version of Kiss plays agrees to and if it all works out.
All of this can be debated and discussed forever but those are some of my thoughts. As always my doors remains open to ALL to discuss and debate and members of the HOF may very well come on the air with me as they have in the past when I was screaming to get Kiss in the damn thing! Ace and Peter are scheduled to come on TMS together next month. More on that when we get closer. For most Kiss fans this news sucks big time, but there’s still about 7 weeks left to see what unfolds.. All we know as of now is that their is no performance for the original band planned or being allowed by Gene and Paul. We have been told for decades that the FANS are the boss of Kiss. Judging from the reaction to this news this is one instance that clearly does not apply..
Sorry for any typos, been a long late night last night. All comments welcome and being posted ASAP.