Gene-Simmons400 Justin Tedaldi of the Examiner spoke with KISS frontman Gene Simmons about his latest book, Me, Inc.: Build an Army of One, Unleash Your Inner Rock God, Win in Life and Business (out October 21st) and other topics. Excerpts appear below.

Examiner: What was the inspiration for this book?

Simmons: Life, really. I’ll ask you this question and see if you can answer it. You went to high school, I presume.

Examiner: Sure did.

Simmons: What was the name of the class that prepared you for what you do now for a living?

Examiner: I don’t believe there was one.

Simmons: How about that? Because I didn’t have a class that prepared me for this or the restaurant business or the football business or being in a rock band or branding or the television business or the movie business or the corporate speaking things—none of it. There is no class for that. In essence, it whittles down—although I didn’t understand it in those days—you have an inferred fiduciary duty to yourself, to learn people skills, language skills, have the right thing, be at the right place, and at the right time. And surround yourself with people who are smarter, not stupider, than you are. And get rid of all losers in your life and make smart life decisions.

Like, don’t get married, guys. Different rules for girls. Don’t get married in your early twenties—you’re an idiot; you’re still full of c—. You haven’t made your fortune, and why would you want to take on mortgages, kids, and, well, divorce, because statistics say you will get divorced, and in certain households of certain ethnic and/or racial groups, 80% of households don’t have a father—they run out. And if you’re of a certain religious belief, you might have ten kids. Why would you do that? When each child could cost a million dollars by the time they graduate college. A million dollars! That’s pretax; that means two million dollars per child at the highest tax rate—the highest tax rate just earn more than 250,000 dollars.

So the book is sort of Cliff Notes of life and business, because life is business. And the thing that made me write the book is sort of my personal journey to learn what I learned, and then more importantly, how to implement that. In other words, how to use what I know, and how to make a lot more money. And I make a lot of money. Not just with a rock band.

Examiner: You penned a memorable back cover blurb for Joe Perry of Aerosmith’s new book, saying, “When I grow up, I want to be Joe Perry.” How did that come together, and why do you want to be Joe Perry?

Simmons: Well, he asked me to write that and I’m trying to make nice. Wouldn’t you say nice things if I asked you to write the foreword to my book?….My thing is really: I make a living, I don’t need to write this book, but I think it’s an important book to write.

Examiner: You wrote the first KISS memoir as a member of the group back in 2001 with KISS and Make-Up. Would you be interested in penning another memoir at some point?

Simmons: Sure. But…maybe I’ll wait until the day that KISS ends, which is not happening anytime soon. We have a KISS golf course and LA KISS the football team, and all kinds of KISS stuff. And we continue to tour the world and have a great time. I think the only reason to write another sort of memoir is gonna be at the end of the train ride, when we look back and say, “What a crazy trip this has been” kind of thing….

What I’m trying to do [with Me, Inc.] is not to be so full of myself, and just be willing to kick people in the nuts and say, “Look, this is really important; you’ve gotta cut the sh— out.” And we all need that; I do, too. You know, if I stuff another piece of cake in my mouth, Shannon walks over and says, “Hey! Get out of here; put that down, you know it’s not good for you.” We all need that. And in life and business and anything else.

Go to the Examiner to read the entire interview.



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  • Patrick on

    I’m beginning to suspect that KISS-related news stories are the “Junk food” articles that keep commenting traffic up on this site as well as making way for more important news stories being noticed amongst the poop flinging. The things people have to do to keep the bills paid. 😛

  • zack on

    Awesome new toilet paper I can wipe my butt with lol

    • guitarslinger on

      Isn’t there a Kiss toilet paper yet?? I mean, caskets and all, Kiss should cater for every basic human need …

  • Chris S. on

    I don’t give a sh*t what this egotistical windbag has to say about anything anymore –
    Gene is a mean, lying, unethical, money-grubbing bastard who will do anything for cash and would accept a check instead of saving his daughter from drowning.
    It’s the truth, I know my Kiss/Gene Simmons facts. If you don’t believe, or challenge this, you’re either naive or a newbie.

    • Grim Reaper's See You In Hell Video on

      I have to agree with you! Gene is far from a genius. He has been excellent at taking advantage of gullible & naive Kiss fans for years by simply selling anything imaginable with the Kiss logo on it. Thankfully a lot of us have woken up from his gimmicks. I can’t rember the last time I bought anything Kiss related.

    • Chris S. on

      Woken up is right. I’m a major fan of the 1974-2000 era of Kiss but haven’t bought anything Kiss related for years either. I wish he would stop ripping people off, put Kiss to rest, and move on career-wise but he won’t, and it just gets more ridiculous.

  • Scott Whitaker on

    Everybody likes to bash Gene all the time, but he must be doing something right.

  • Lee on

    Joe bro, Aces flying on the Bellagio 21 table in Vegas. Loved the check bit. Ace at Chillah: Support. Kiss Nation 2014: Support. Word up.

    • Paul's Drawings with Veins on

      Hey I’m going to see Ace in Greensburg, PA.

      I can’t believe his is playing such a s-hole but hey you gotta see him someplace and that where he’s playing. I mean you really have to be a loser to play there. I can’t believe a star of his stature would stoop so low as to play at a small venue like this after playing arenas.

      Hmm I’m trying to think. They last person I saw play there was drum roll please —- none other than Paul Stanley on his stellar solo tour. I guess that’s the best he can do when he doesn’t have the KISS name displayed behind him on stage.

    • elliot on

      excellent post. drum roll provided by eric singer.

    • guitarslinger on

      Paul would probably find a way of eloquently changing your valid point into something like “biggest solo tour ever …” – or just keep quiet about his own failures (while pointing at the failures of others whenever possible) and keep shouting about his successes instead.

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