KISS400 Gary Graff of Billboard reports:

With the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction ceremony looming closer, neither KISS nor the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation seem ready to relax the entrenched positions that led to the group’s decision not to perform April 10th at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

KISS, according to frontman Paul Stanley, is upset that the Rock Hall plans to induct only the group’s founding lineup and tells Billboard that discussions about subsequent members “was shut down as a non-starter.”

Nevertheless, Stanley says KISS feels that honoring the other six musicians who have played in the band is “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…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.”

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation CEO Joel Peresman says that the decision about who to induct from any band is made by the Rock Hall’s nominating committee as well as an adjunct group of “scholars and historians” familiar with specific inductees and genres. “This isn’t chemistry or physics; it’s not an exact science,” Peresman acknowledges. “Sometimes there’s an entire body of work up until (the artists) are inducted, other times it’s a specific period of time that established the band as who they are. With KISS there wasn’t one person here who didn’t agree that the reason Kiss was nominated and is being inducted was because of what was established in the ’70s with Ace (Frehley), with Peter (Criss), with Paul and Gene (Simmons). That’s what put them on that map.”

Peresman adds that KISS “is a unique situation where you have artists who wear makeup as part of what the band’s about,” but the Rock Hall felt that the later members — including current guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer, who are wearing Frehley and Criss’ makeup, respectively — “are fine musicians who…basically have the same makeup and are the same characters that Ace and Peter started. It’s not like they created these other characters with different makeup and playing different songs. They took the persona of characters that were created by Ace and Peter.” Persman notes that last year Heart was in a similar position, where the Rock Hall chose to induct the original ’70s sextet and not later musicians that played in the band.

But Stanley feels the situation with KISS is a bit more personal. “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,” he says. “It’s like them swallowing a teaspoon of medicine they don’t want. It’s a bitter pill for them to swallow, so they’re making it as small as possible.”

Stanley says that the Rock Hall asked KISS to perform as the original quartet, in make-up, but he and Simmons — who have been playing with three-time KISS member Singer again since 2002 and Thayer since 2004 — were not confident the performance would be up to standard. “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,” he explains. “I have too much invested at this point. It really is a can of worms that I feel is better off left closed.” Peresman, meanwhile, says the Rock Hall has no plans for a performance stand-in for Kiss at the ceremony. “We have other artists, other inductees showing up and performing when they can,” Peresman says. “We’re very hopeful that Ace and Peter and Paul and Gene come and accept their award. We’re obviously honored to have them inducted.”

Read more at Billboard.


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  • Sean M on

    Paul Stanley is worried about Ace Frehley’s performance? Come on, I watched the midnight special from 1975 when Ace was shredding in Deuce, he blew G&P off the stage. He blew them off the stage in Toronto during the reunion when I saw them over 20 years later, and he would blow them off the stage at the HOF. Gene and Paul looked like a couple of drag queens and Ace and Peter were rocking. Sickening. What is really with that stupid prance Gene does around the stage anyway and whatever Paul is doing, he is not wired right. If not for Ace Frehley I wouldn’t even listen to KISS !! I finally gave in and watched a youtube video of Tommy playing Deuce, sure he trys to play it the same and he is a good guitarist and all that, but anyone who grew up loving KISS in the 70s cannot stand to watch this, it was campy as hell. The guy is imitating Ace’s body language, solos, movements….I hope he gets paid well cause he has to look in the mirror, it’s sad……so sad. But they would rather tour with Def Leppard, BAH HA HA HA HA, one of the cheesiest bands OF ALL TIME!!! GARBAGE along with some of those songs Gene and Paul wrote. The only thing that saved some of them were Ace’s solos. We all picked up and learned to play metal guitars because of Ace Frehley, not because of Starchild or wonder boy or whatever the hell……

    • Eddie on

      I don’t understand why nobody ever comments on Paul’s performance lately. He has struggled as a singer greatly for a few years now..

    • Van on

      He has and I’ve seen KISS and Ace Frehley’s recent shows on Youtube. It’s clear that Ace’s playing is better than ever and Paul’s is struggling. I think it’s a coverup to the real reason they didn’t want to play with Ace and Peter. I wonder if Ace and Peter have watched KISS’ recent shows.

    • Sean M on

      Exactly. He needs to shut the hell up during songs as well.

    • Sean M on

      sorry i meant between songs, ha ha or during that works for me too, ha ha

    • Sean M on

      and one more thing, Paul said in the beginning Ace was a comet blah blah blah, then he quit practicing. From watching Paul Stanley play guitar, what the hell does he know about practicing guitar??? What a sickening egomaniac.

      Sorry Eddie for the numerous responses but I’m angry!! ha ha

    • Klaus Baumgarten on

      No you are right:-) Because Paul does not sing whole songs anymore, especially in the chorusses he leaves the high notes or even whole phrases to Singer to compensate for his inability. It is really sad, by his own repeatedly uttered standards (saying that Ace did not fully commit himself tothe band balabla so many times) he should kick himself out now because he can no longer deliver.

    • George on

      His voice has been shot since 2010…2009 concerts he was still singing good..I have a question Eddie…I have always said that if Eric Carr hadn’t died the original four would never have gotten back together. I say that because he and Bruce were the stability KISS was looking for and I really believe Eric Carr would still be in the band today, and probably Bruce too…Bruce only was out because of the reuniting of the originals, but I’d love your thought on that, thanks…

    • Bill on


      Look at the bonus disk from the Kissology III set. That was from MSG on one of the first legs of the reunion tour, and Ace sounds HORRIBLE. I saw three of those four shows at MSG and he was just as bad in the other one, and marginally better in the third. The last tour with Aerosmith, Peter was barely cutting (and in fact, I am convinced he had ‘behind the curtain’ help).

      I’m not naive to Paul’s vocal troubles, but I think Paul and Gene are easy targets here, and I applaud (in particular) Paul’s standing up to the Hall for their nonsense. Bruce Kulick and Eric Carr should ABSOLUTELY be in there. Vince Welnick and Tom Constantin didn’t move the needle one bit for the Dead, but they’re there, and Kiss wouldn’t have made it out of 1985 without Bruce Kulick. Actually, Dio (Sabbath) is an even more egregious slight, but someone has to bring the issue to light.

  • Omen on

    While I can understand the Hall’s point-of-view on this, there are a couple of flaws in their thinking. To begin, Eric Carr created his own persona as well, and (in my opinion) was a far superior drummer than either Criss or Singer. Why should he (as well as possibly Vinnie Vincent) not be included on the list when his contribution to KISS is definitely noteworthy and substantial. Also, Eric Singer was in KISS already once before, and drummed on the album Revenge. Ask any KISS fan and they’ll tell you that that album was substantial in establishing KISS to what they were after fairly hellacious releases in the 80’s. In no way am I arguing that I would like to see the original lineup one last time, but I find it disrespectful to leave other members (Carr, Vincent, Kulick, and Singer specifically) off the list when they too have made significant contributions to KISS’ legacy both musically and aesthetically.

    • Eddie on

      I’ve said all along, has to be ALL members or just original. Think it is very hard to pick and choose. But yes Eric was his OWN person, which Tommy and Eric should be, and none of this would be an issue..

    • John on

      Eddie, I think it would just be a different issue. If Tommy was “The Wolf” and Eric became “The Sphinx”, or something, it would in many ways be worse than what they’re doing. Instead of the “50% tribute band KISS”, it would be “unintentionally-hilarious KISS”. Instead of the KISS Army angry at Gene & Paul, they would be laughing at them. It had already gotten to that point when Vinnie joined the band. The “Ankh”? What the hell was THAT? It was just a different kind of lame.

    • Eddie on

      You honestly think they couldn’t come up with some cool new makeup? When Vinnie was in it wouldn’t matter who was in then, Kiss was dead at that time, and it had nothing to do with his persona

    • Bob Esssrin on

      That’s the issue? I think the Hall is the issue on their restrictions for some bands, and not for others.

  • John on

    Bullshit. Eric Carr, Bruce Kulick, Vinnie Vincent & Mark St John never pretended to be Ace & Peter. And it’s only about the makeup??? Is this the makeup hall of fame?

  • DC on

    Sorry, Ed. Have to disagree with you agreeing with the HOF here. Where does that leave Kulick, Carr, Vincent, et al?

    F THE HALL!!!!!!

    The fact that neither Priest nor Maiden has even been discussed sickens me.

    • Eddie on

      Said MANY times, ALL members or just originals. You can NOT pick and choose certain people. I agree with the HOF in that these guys (Tommy & Eric) are impersonating what someone else created. That is not their fault. But hard to induct someone in a HOF for impersonating what others created. I have said a THOUSAND times, Tommy & Eric are good people and players. NEVER said they shouldn’t be in the band! But they are dealing with the hand they are dealt when Paul and Gene made them dress, impersonate, act and play in the confines of what someone else created.

    • Van on

      That’s the reality with KISS in that Tommy and Eric are bearing the personas that Ace and Peter created. The truth hurts, regardless of how they spin it. It’s unrealistic for Paul and Gene to think that Tommy and Eric should be inducted along with the original lineup. I think we can see why Ace said it would be absurd and a farce. I don’t blame the HoF for not budging.

  • Tom on

    Well I guess Trunk is just laughing his butt off. Embarrass the band Eddie. Yeah, you’re some “fan”. You’ve done everything you can to make this stick with Paul and Gene. And to underscore the hypocrite you are, you stand in public support of an institution you have bashed for years just because they said something that agrees with you. So now the Hall speaks the truth? So now they’re a valid institution because they agreed with you on something as aimless as stage makeup? What a complete fraud. What about the Carr family and the complete rejection of their late son? What about how Thayer and Singer feel right now being the center of this argument? Do you have no consideration for their pain in the middle of all this? Are they not people too? Is this their fault now? Enjoy this mess you’ve helped make for the fans. You’re no fan of this band. You represent everything that is wrong with fans who THINK that just because they’ve got time invested, they’re somehow ENTITLED to only have the band how they want them. KISS will continue despite your criticisms and NOTHING you do will ever change that. And when the final chapter is written on this band, no one, including yourself, will ever be able to discredit their legacy. Hang your head Eddie. There are plenty of people getting pulled into this fight now that never wanted any part of it. And you egging it on only makes it worse for those people. Hate Paul and Gene all you want, but leave the other parties out of it.

    • Eddie on

      Wow Tom, you give me a lot of credit and influence here, so thanks. I guess this is all my fault huh? Scary! I guess your “must take sides” mentality lashes out at anyone with an opinion other than yours? God forbid anyone has a voice and an opinion! I hope you enjoy Kiss for generations to come, when there are no original members at all and Gene and Paul replace themselves. One thing for sure, THEY LOVE fans like you. Just keep worshiping everything you are sold and don’t EVER question it or have any opinion. Just perfect!

    • Eric on

      Tom it’s morons like you that we have the Jerkoff in the WH, People like you who believe everything they are spoonfed by whoever they like or believe

    • Rick on

      Tom, the only people discrediting Kiss’s legacy are Paul and Gene. The “final chapter” of Kiss was already written over a decade ago on the farewell tour. What we have now is just an unnecessary epilogue to an otherwise great book. I’ve yet to hear Eddie say anything about Kiss that wasn’t spot-on. Keep fighting the good fight, Ed.

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