I originally wrote this blog as a Facebook note on September 27 2009 and wanted to repost it here to kind of give anyone who may read this a better sense of who I am.
I am writing this not out of a driving desire or because I feel compelled to express myself. I am also not delusional and feel I have to “blog.” I am just listening to some good music and felt a little inspired to tap into my thoughts. I know I take a lot of flack for my love of KISS and their music. It does annoy me and hurts my feelings when someone takes a shot at the one constant in my life. Through all the good times and the bad, the only thing I knew I could count on (even when I gave up on myself) was KISS.
I am by no means a religious man but seeing the band in concert for the first time in my life at Halifax Rocks was truly a religious moment to me. From the moment that the curtain was raised to conceal the stage to the first few notes of Deuce I was in shock, awe and the happiest I had been in months. I try to explain to people what being at a KISS concert is like and only those who have had the chance to go can understand. It is much more than a concert. Being in the crowd with 90 000 other KISS fans was like being home with my large extended family.
The KISS Army as we are known are a different fan base than any other band can claim to have. We are loyal and we look out for each other. I remember standing next to a boyfriend and girlfriend (both 19) and the look of utter shock when Gene, Paul, Tommy and Eric were lowered to the stage from the lighting rig. I had conversations with them throughout the night and when Paul asked Halifax to sing along to Rock And Roll All Night, the response of 90 000 people singing to the band was something I can not put into words. The girlfriend whispered to her boyfriend and he nodded. She then spun to me and said “You said they were great. That they were the best band to see live. We came cuz it was something cool to do. But we are fans now. My god they were fucking awesome.”
This will sound strange but I enjoyed seeing them witness the spectacle for the very first time. Yes it was my first time in person, but I have logged tons of hours in front of TV watching the band in different incarnations over my life time. I made sure they saw it all. During “Hotter Than Hell” I told her “Gene is going to breath fire…watch.” When Tommy started his solo I said “He will shoot rockets into the air from his guitar that will explode.” When Gene was swallowed by the smoke machine’s discharge I said “He will spit blood and be raised to a small stage on the lighting rig” and when Paul started his banter before Love Gun I said “He is going to fly to a stage in the middle of the crowd”….each time she eagerly told her boyfriend to watch for these things. The thing that blew my mind though, was when they turned to me after the concert and said “The best part was how KISS interacted with the crowd. They made you feel like they were lucky to be there to see you and not you lucky to be there to see them.”
That is the thing that I remember thinking too. Yes, they may act that way with every city, but for that night and for those 3 hours it was for us. I saw fans grow right before my eyes and the band gained thousands of new fans that night. My facebook lit up like a chrismas tree the day after the concert. One of my friends said “I get it now. I finally see what you were always talking about. Best live show in the world bar none.” This friend saw Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper, Motely Crue and said KISS blew them away easily.
To those who do not like the band, good for you. I am glad you have an opinion, just have a good reason to support it. I do not preach to those around me why they should listen to KISS or go see them. That is their decision. If they are enjoying watching a bland band play in a bingo hall, theatre or some rock club that is their decision and good for them. Pay your 40.00 and watch someone stare at their shoes and sing to a few hundred people. They all dress the same, have no personality and they hardly talked to the audience. They have recorded cds though so they have to be good right?. Think though, what will you remember from that concert? The band or the rowdy idiot a few rows up that kept getting on your nerves. Now at a KISS concert, you pay twice as much. A lot of money I know. However, you have your senses stimulated in a way no other concert ever has. Trust me, you quickly forget the jack ass who kept drunkingly bumping into you, and remember seeing Gene fly or Eric’s drumriser raise to the sky. What sounds like a better time?
The thing people tend to forget is that rock and roll is not always about having a deep message or promoting a cause. Some bands take themselves way too seriously and have an over developed sense of self worth. When you get 90 000 people together, we don’t wanna hear about how we need to stop terrorism and other real world news. We are bombarded with terrible news every damn day to the point we are desensitized. KISS has it right. We just wanna Rock And Roll All Night and Party Everyday…..