paulstanley400 Gary Graff of Billboard spoke with KISS frontman Paul Stanley about his forthcoming autobiography and the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame induction. Excerpts of the interview appear below.

Billboard: You’re the last of the original Kiss members with a book of your own. Just a slacker?

Paul Stanley: It really had nothing to do with the band as far as being first, last, middle. It wasn’t with any of that in mind. The truth of the matter is I had sworn for, literally, decades not to write an autobiography. I always go back to George Orwell, who said the autobiography is the most outrageous form of fiction. And I would say 90-plus, 95 percent of the autobiographies by any of my contemporaries would be better suited on a roll of soft paper, so at least you could use it for something, ’cause they’re nothing more than self-serving fantasies or delusions or love letters to themselves. They serve no purpose. What I finally came to grips with was the idea that my life could be inspiring to other people… and almost more importantly I wanted something that my children could read when they got older to understand what it took for me to succeed and a better understanding of who I am and perhaps what they need in their lives to move forward. So there was a real purpose to this as opposed to just some sort of bragging rights.

Billboard: There is a lot more struggle in your book, especially in your youth, than many would expect — family dysfunction and especially the misshapen right ear and being deaf on that side. That’s something you kept quite for decades. Why?

Paul Stanley: It was too painful. You can only reveal things and you can only deal with things when you’re ready to. My experiences as a child were so debilitating and destructive that the best way for me to deal with my ear was to cover it and to, at least on the surface, ignore what was going on — although that really wasn’t an answer. Luckily, as an adult I found different ways to resolve some of those issues and also to find some surgical relief and modifications.

Billboard: So what actually went down with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and your decision not to play at the ceremony?

Paul Stanley: Oh, it starts decades go. That it’s 14 years on (of eligibility) and we’re getting into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is a clear indication that the people who hide behind that moniker don’t like us, but it reached a point where it was so absurd and ludicrous (to exclude KISS) that they caved. But they’re only going to induct the original four (members), and bringing up the idea of inducting members other than the original four…was shut down as a non-starter. It’s a very valid argument considering that there are people who played on multi-platinum albums and played for millions of people and were very important for the continuation of the band. And clearly when you’ve got a busload of Grateful Dead (members) who have been inducted and guys in the Chili Peppers who nobody knows who they are because they played on the very earliest albums are inducted, and when the original drummer of Rush, John Rutsey, who played on a classic album, isn’t inducted. The list goes on and on of the inconsistencies. Now, I’m not pointing fingers at any of those people, but I’m certainly pointing a finger at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The only consistencies are inconsistencies and the rules clearly are there are no rules because the criteria for how and who gets in is purely based upon a personal like or dislike. And when I feel we’re being treated unfairly, I have issues with that.

Billboard: You could just play with the original four of you, of course.

Paul Stanley: They wanted the original four guys to play, in makeup. But, honestly, I don’t want to roll the dice and possibly negatively impact on what I personally have been involved in building for 40 years. I have too much invested at this point. It really is a can of worms that I feel is better off left closed. So there’s been a lot of issues, and perhaps the best way to deal with them is to celebrate the four original guys and go there and get our award and to look past the differences that will always be there. It doesn’t change the big picture; we have differences and we will continue to have differences. It doesn’t change who I want to play with and who represents KISS. There are a lot of people who are great inspirations to me, and still are, who are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and for that reason and the fact that fans want us in there, I graciously and vigorously will be there to accept the award. We should salute and enjoy an evening that celebrates what the four of us started. But there’s always a lot of cloak and dagger stuff and a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes.

Read more at Billboard.

In related news, the singer also discussed his autobiography and six-date book tour here.

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  • bigsled on

    Blah, blah, blah . Thats all I hear from $immons & $tanley . Especially the last 13 years. Paul is the king of spin and , the king of delusion .
    And just because he kept the band going all these years dosent make his point of views , about the past , the correct ones

    He’s got some swamp land to sell you…. I mean a band…. I mean a brand .
    This isnt the Kiss I remember. They died along time ago.

  • Det Pak on

    I never would of voted for KISS if I knew how Ace and Peter are being dumped by Paul and Gene,.Been better if Deep Purple had made it,now that the originals are getting the shaft.

    • H R Puffinstuff on

      Do you not read what is going on with this issue? It’s not a matter of Paul and Gene dumping Ace and Peter. It’s the matter of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame defining and dictating what Kiss is all about. They haven’t done this with other groups, but now, they want to F–ck with Kiss because they still don’t think they should be inducted. I agree with Paul’s decision. Paul and Gene should go up to the podium, accept the award, thank the fans, then tell the Hall to go f–ck themselves.

  • Abner Devereaux on

    Disregard my last post about deletion, Dana. It just came up. My apologies.

    • Dana on

      No worries, but from now on I would really appreciate it if someone has a criticism or complaint, that you would all e-mail me directly by clicking on my highlighted name just below the headlines.

      Dana 🙂

  • Lee on

    Leppard should headline their own shows, in ’89 they got 18,000 per every show, they can do big numbers on their own with Night Ranger. Night Ranger was third on the bill with the Perry-less Journey and Foreigner with nobody from any hit record clown show a few years ago. They were better than the other two, short set. Gene & Paul know what the trunkster knows: Kiss are 7,000 tops without the Leppard. How many tours with the same set, different tour name. Wenner dictates the HOF, Kiss/Ronstadt/Moodies/Deep Purple are estranged from Rolling Stone.

    • Abner Devereaux on

      Oh in 1989 they pulled those numbers…. wait let me look at my calendar…..hmmmm it’s not 1989 any more… that’s odd.

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