I thought you might get a kick out of this old photo I just ran across. It's from back in the day...around the Lick it up tour. This was taken in the lobby of the Broadwater Beach Hotel in my home town of Biloxi, MS. My two friends and I (I'm in the white) skipped school that day and drove up and down the coast looking for you guys.
We stumbled across you guys eating lunch in the dining room and waited for you all to finish before we bothered you. Paul, Vinnie and Eric signed for us, but weren't very talkative. You on the other hand, visited with us for about 15 minutes and were more than happy to take this pic when we asked.
KISS was such a huge part of my younger years. Over the years, I've seen almost every lineup the band has had. Now I enjoy watching Family Jewels with my children. Thank you for being a part of my KISStory.
Why do you wear rose lapel boutonnieres? Four or five years ago you started to regularly do this. You even change rose colors. It is unique how you do it. It a bold fashion choice, which you pull off well.
Did you know the Greeks interpreted flower colors as mood indicators of their Gods? An amusing analogy...
Roses are so incredibly symbolic of many things. Your fashion style of a rose lapel seems an even more personal choice than which tie a man might choose. We both know most females like roses, but it seems as if there is something more... Is there someone for whom you have been wearing the roses? What is your rose wearing philosophy? I'm curious.
And, I, being a woman who likes flowers and you, always notice. Have a nice day! Thanks!
Response from Gene:
No real reason, really. I like it. And what I like, I do. Fashion and taste be damned.
Cut or Uncut.... which are you?
Response from Gene:
Jews are cut. It's called Circumcision. And it's an Old Testament (otherwise known as The Bible) thing. It has been done for thousands of years. Doctors have only recently (in the last 100 years or so) realized it's actually healthy and cuts down on infections, which is why most hospitals do it...whether you're Jewish or not.
Potent Quotables: "I'd never want to be Gene Simmons, an old man who puts on makeup to entertain kids, like a clown going to work."
In a recent interview, the Nine Inch Nails frontman defended his decision to go on an indefinite hiatus from music.
What is up that guys ass? Fans really want to see KISS. What right does this guy have to attack us? What right does he have to attack KISS or any other band? The guy should do what is best for himself and not worry about the fans of other bands. I can't wait for the new album. All the really great artists never stopped performing.
Response from Gene:
No worries. Trent grew up on KISS and cut his teeth on our toons. When he was recording Downward Spiral, he had two action figures on his mix console - Jesus and Gene Simmons.
Once you're a self confessed heroin addict, who used the stuff for years, you don't look at life the way the rest of us do...I'm told.
We all wish him well.
WOULD YOU PLEASE TELL ME IF YOU WERE AT THE PITTSBURGH REGATTA JULY 4. MY 8YR. OLD DAUGHTER WAS REALLY EXCITED ABOUT HAVING HER PICTURE TAKEN WITH YOU, BUT NOW I AM WANDERING IF IT WAS A IMPOSTOR. I WOULD APPRECIATE A REPLY.
Response from Gene:
Sorry. Imposter. I wasn't there.
I have had too many promptings from my mother to write to you as of late, and since she is email challenged, I am obliged to honor my precious motherís wishes on her behalf. Of course I hope you donít mind that I add a few of my own comments as well.
First off, so as not to mesh words....my mother adores you. Her name is Irene. Irene would adopt you if she could. Sheíd leave my father for you, sheíd reject her grandchildren for you, and sheíd probably cut off her left arm for you. Of course, this would all be on condition that your partner Shannon and your children would agree to all this, because she thinks the world of them too. Now mind you, my mother isnít crazy, she just thinks you are the catís meow. But it should be known that she has felt this way about Kevin Bacon, Chuck Norris and the Crocodile Hunter too, and has also written to them and has gotten letters and pictures back, but thatís small potatoes compared to you! You are on the top of her list. And when she watches your show, she canít stop laughing. She has the most infectious laugh, so the family gets quite amused with her while she watches your show. So in retrospect, you have a very beloved fan in South Bend, Indiana named Irene Japa.
And speaking of South Bend, Indiana, I have to tell you that you and I have crossed paths previously, albeit Iím sure you donít remember. You came to South Bend, Indiana in 1984 with KISS to play at Notre Dames JACC Stadium. I was a desk clerk at the Marriott hotel where you and the band lodged. I dealt mostly with your manager, however there was a very funny incident that happened when you came to the front desk one morning just before you departed for your next city. I believe that story was the hit of the Marriott hotel as well as for me for quite some time.
To refresh your memory, you came to the front desk one morning during a very busy time, and cut in front of a very long line of weary travelers either checking in or checking out in order to get some assistance. You interrupted the other desk clerk on duty who was Dee Dee. At that time, Dee Dee about 70-something years old (the beloved Dee Dee has since passed on). Dee Dee was the type of person who had no clue who you were and pretty much didnít care. If you werenít some big-wig president or CEO of some company, she wasnít interested (she only read the Wall Street Journal and was all into the corporate big shots, not rock-n-rollers). Of course you didnít have your make-up on, and I donít believe many of the hotel guests recognized you standing there, however I definitely knew who you were (knowing you and the band were in the hotel made me all the more receptive to KISS member sightings).
To continue - Dee Dee berated you - very politely - for cutting in line in front of everyone. What intrigued me the most was your response back to her. You were such a gentleman, and you apologized to her. You turned around and moved to the end of the line waiting for your turn to be assisted. Since it was a coin toss as to who would wait on you once it was your turn, you lucked out and got Dee Dee again (at that moment, I felt very sorry for you to have to deal with her again. I was really hoping and praying youíd get me!). I have to tell you that the exchange between you and Dee Dee was priceless. You apologized to her profusely and she apologized back. You were so sweet to her and it was amazing to watch the interaction between you two. She helped you with your Fed Ex package and gave you some ďgrandmotherly words of wisdomĒ, which you accepted. You both just chatted away. You then both said the warmest of goodbyes to one another and you once again apologized to Dee Dee for being disrespectful. You then walked away. I was speechless. Dee Dee, being the quintessential Dee Dee, was unfazed.
Mr. Simmons, I just have to say that in all my years of interaction with celebrities, the memory of the one with you is one of my fondest. Itís very clear why my mother adores you. Of course I have a special memory of you because I saw your gentleness and sweetness - something that canít be witnessed through a television screen. You earned a tremendous amount of respect from a lot of people that day, especially from Dee Dee and myself, not to mention all those people that were in line in front of you and the people that caught wind of the story from me. Incidentally, my mother worked at the Marriott as well at that time, and I made sure I told her about it. She knew about KISS because my brother (who passed away shortly after my encounter with you), loved your music, and he and his friends would beg my mother to make-up their faces like KISS all the time.
So here it is years later that she adores you, your family and your show. I think hearing what she did from me, has made her all the more enamored of you.
I apologize for the long email, butI just wanted to pass along a story Iím sure has escaped your memory long ago. As a matter of face, I happened to mention that story to one of my co-workers recently, who incidentally is a huge KISS fan, and he loved it. So Iím still patting you on the back after all these years later.
Anyway, Mr. Simmons, I hope this letter finds you in good health and spirits. Thank you again for making my mother laugh. I live in St. Louis and I donít get to see her often, but she mentions your show every time I talk to her, and itís great to hear to know she gets such enjoyment from your show.
I know you wonít be able to answer this email based on the thousands you get, but I hope that you at least get to read it. Iím sure itíll make your heart a little happy for a moment or so knowing something good you did many years ago.
Warmest regards and blessings to you,
I am really disappointed to read about your claim that Adam Lambert ruined his career by coming out. So what? Isn't it time people got over these things. I think it is perfect timing for him, he has a killer voice and is sexy as hell, gay or not. I saw him live and thought he was great. I wish you would keep your comments to yourself. I realize that you are just trying to get some press time so that you can promote your show.
I used to be a fan but now I will not be watching.
Response from Gene:
Firstly, I'm a fan of Adam's. Backstage, I told Brian May from Queen that Adam should be their lead singer. Period.
He's got talent by the bucketful. Problem is, he's decided to make the first big story about himself NOT about his talent, his career, but his sexual preferences. And, that's not something the rest of the world is particularly interested in. I'm first in line to support gay rights, black rights, Hispanic rights...everyone's rights to lead the life they choose.
A career is based on careful decisions of how the audience is going to perceive you. And those decisions are pivotal. Make the wrong decision, and you're done. Remember, the biggest artists, Elton, George Michael (yes, even the Village People) and others waited until they were rich and famous FIRST, before coming out.
I stand by every word I said.
I'm a 39 year old man who is getting a divorce from my wife and you are so right about the dangers of marriage. She ran up my credit cards and screwed my credit. I encourage you to keep up the good work and warn people of the dangers of getting married and co-signing a credit card.
My two biggest fiancial mistakes:
1. Getting married
2. Co-signing a credit card with my wife.
Response from Gene:
I'm often misunderstood on the issue of marriage. Admittedly, there ARE more important things in life, than how I view marriage. But in a nutshell, firstly, I believe marriage is a wonderful, romantic ideal...and I also believe in FULL DISCLOSURE BEFORE THE FACT. If either side wants to get married, tell each other everything BEFORE you get married. Write it down. Have individual counsel (lawyer) and once signed, it's binding -- either called a Prenup or a Co-Hab agreement. This minimizes divorce lawyer costs.
For me, marriage is not necessary. I believe it's archaic and simply does not work. Statistics around the world (in both Civilized and Uncivilized countries -- I use the Politically Incorrect, but Accurate phrase here) bear this out. Men simply won't stay married. They tend to wander.
I actually WISH marriages worked. But, by and large, it doesn't.
So, your choices are to go into it blindly and (usually men) pay the price when it goes bad (because statistics tell us it will go bad).... or blindly trust it will last a lifetime.
Good luck with that, by the way. And, remember -- I wish things were different. But, they're not.
I just heard my bands music will be used for a new reality show pilot with Jason Dessault and yourself?? Iím not sure how youíre involved.. or Jason. Itís a friend of a friend of a friend kinda thingÖ?
AnywayÖ I just hope you get to hear the full record.
Weíre called CHYShUGA
Response from Gene:
Have never heard of the band. Though I wish you well. Would strongly urge a name change. And I know nothing about a reality show.
Your opinion... Right or not???
WHAT A WOMAN SAYS = what she really means
Yes = No
No = Yes
Maybe = No
I'm sorry = You'll be sorry
We need = I want
It's your decision = The correct decision should be obvious by now
Do what you want = You'll pay for this later
We need to talk = I need to complain
Sure...go ahead = I don't want you to
I'm not upset = Of course I'm upset, you moron!
You're ... so manly = You need a shave and you sweat a lot
You're certainly attentive tonight = Is sex all you ever think about?
Be romantic, turn out the lights = I have flabby thighs
Do you love me? = I'm going to ask for something expensive
How much do you love me? = I did something today that you're really not going to like
I'll be ready in a minute = Kick off your shoes and find a good game on TV
Is my butt fat? = Tell me I'm beautiful
You have to learn to communicate = Just agree with me
Are you listening to me?? = Too late, you're dead
Response from Gene:
All of it is....accurate and true.
Today, at the age of 51, I have become a Kiss fan. For the last 26
years, that is every year we have been married, my wife and I have
been volunteer advocates for the rights of childhood sexual abuse
survivors. Both my wife and myself are molestation survivors. We
understand the wall of denial that surrounds the crime of molestation.
We have spent years supporting families whose children have been
victimized. We have witnessed DAs who would run naked through poison
ivy before prosecuting molesters. We have watched judges show accused
molesters the same prefererential treatment that the judge showed
Jackson in the 2005 trial. We have even watched the families of
molestation victims receive the same hostility that Jackson fans show
Jackson's accusers. To many adolescent and young adult victims and
survivors of molestation, Jackson has become the symbol of the Wall of
Denial. These gobs of public relations orchestrated threnody over
Jackson is as traumatic to these survivors as seeing the world mourn
their abusers. My 19 year old son has four friends in suicide
intervention and one hospitalized for attempted suicide because of
this Jackson mania.
Then along comes Gene Simmons and he makes this statement.
ďI want the kids whoíve accused him, to be blunt, of molestation, to
have their say,Ē Simmons told The Canadian Press in a telephone
interview from Los Angeles on Thursday.
ďI want to hear what they have to say. Not celebrities. Letís
celebrate the talent and everything later, letís just figure out if
there are any victims here"
Jackson's guilt or innocent is irrelevant here. What is important is
that the victims not be ignored and their stories not swept under the
rug. Simply by suggesting that the kids have the right to have their
say, you have taken a lot of the sting out of Jackson's demise. You
have shown incredible integrity, honesty, and courage in your
statement, and plenty of tact by holding off until now to make your
statement. Thank you, for having the guts to speak the truth to
fandom. Thank you for that statement, Gene. After watching some of
your old concert footage on U-tube, I have come to the conclusion that
you and your band mates always were there for the kids. At 17 I was
just too thick to get it.
Hi Gene Simmons,
I watch your TV show when its on , I love it .I saw one show when you were talking with you mom and you both speak Hungarian ,and I knew what you were saying ,cause I speak Hungarian too with my mom .You should speak more Hungarian on your show .
Love your fan,
Response from Gene:
Perhaps. But, then others would ask me to speak more English, or Hebrew, or German and even throw in a bit of Japanese...yes. I will.