Gene Simmons is one open, straightforward, and honest guy; just YouTube him up and listen to a few of his soundbites. SongFacts, Roger Catlin, had a chance to sit down with Gene and talked candidly with the rock star. At one point Catlin states to Gene that Kiss is famous for its merchandising.
To which Gene agreed with and proudly listed the copious amounts of products Kiss was associated with. Caitlin followed up with the following and Gene responded.
Some bands say they’d never be that commercial.
They’re liars and I’ll prove it to you: The hippiest of hippie bands has T-shirts, and as soon as you sell a ticket, you’re not really selling music. As soon as you sell anything, you’re selling something other than music.
And by the way, I don’t want to see a U2 comic book. I don’t want to see The Edge with a cape flying through the air. But I want to see that with Kiss.
So maybe the great bands – Radiohead, and U2 and The Stones – maybe they don’t want to do it. But the truth is, they can’t. Other than the Stones’ tongue logo, when was the last time you saw anybody wearing Mick Jagger on their T-shirt. How about never?
That doesn’t mean they’re not one of the best bands in the world, and they can’t fill up a stadium. I’m talking about that iconic imagery: Things that stand the test of time across generations. I don’t kid myself. It often sounds self-serving, delusional or in other ways arrogant. No. It’s the truth.
Like I said, the man gets straight to the point. Gene goes on to talk about his relationship with former bandmates, Lady Gaga, Hip-Hop and The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. It’s a very good read and you should hit up the link below to check it out.