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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 03 November 2016 at 8:25pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply


I'll try not to ramble:

KISS have been around for as long as I can remember (I was born in '72, the same year the band began to take shape)... I recall seeing them on TV around '77 and wondering to my mother if they all went to sleep with their make-up still on. I can remember the Marvel in-house ads for the SUPER SPECIAL comic, plus seeing ads for their solo albums. I distinctly recall hearing "I Was Made for Lovin' You" all over the radio throughout the summer of '79, and I even had the trading cards & stickers (plastered all over my dresser at the time--my mother was not pleased). Plus, this being the late '70s, it seemed like you'd always see SOMEONE dressed up like of the band members for Halloween!

Despite my familiarity, and also seeing their '80s videos on MTV, I didn't get hooked until after their release of SMASHES, THRASHES & HITS in 1988... my best high school buddy at the time had picked it up, and played it non-stop, singing their praises: "Remember KISS from the '70s? These guys are AWESOME!!"

I finally caved and bought my own copy around Jan. or Feb. of '89, and for the full rest of the year, I became a full-on KISS maniac... fortunately, my buddy already splurged on all their albums (up to that point) on cassette, so he would lend me a couple every few weeks. I basically inhaled everything... all original albums, the solos, the first two ALIVE albums, DOUBLE PLATINUM... yes, even THE ELDER!

From then on, I was first in line for each "release day" of their next albums, from HOT IN THE SHADE, all the way to the DETROIT ROCK CITY soundtrack in '99... saw them at least twice on their HOT IN THE SHADE tour in 1990, and saw them once in Boston for their Reunion show in '96.

After the "Farewell Tour" and the subsequent hiring of Tommy Thayer and bringing Eric Singer back, my overall interest took a nosedive, but I still keep tabs on any news, just out of curiosity (and the last CD I bought was the Volume 3 "Millennium Collection" from 2006).

Always a soft spot in my heart for them, though. My general interest in music was limited before my full-on KISS phase (only a handful of cassettes at the time--the Beatles, Billy Joel, the Police, Huey Lewis & the News), but KISS helped open the floodgates, and I fast became hooked on not only KISS and hard-rock/heavy-metal, but my interest quickly expanded to most other genres... '60s, '50s, classical, film soundtracks, country, you name it.

It may sound corny, but if a film like STAR WARS blew open the doors for me in terms of obsession with movies, then KISS helped solidify my love of music in general.


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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 04 November 2016 at 6:58am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Great story, Shaun (particularly the last line).

I "inhaled" it all, too. I mean, they were the first band I followed religiously. Sure, I dabbled with Pink Floyd and the Beatles. And I did almost religiously collect Megadeth and Iron Maiden - but it was KISS that just hooked me with everything, hence my manure comment a few posts back. 

Interestingly, it's the imagery that hooked me. Yes, as a kid I was into rock and metal - but the imagery on that DESTROYER album hooked me. And that gets me thinking, in a world of iTunes, where some people NEVER look at or see album covers, how many are hooked by imagery now? Think about how iconic album covers are.

A little piece of me "dies" when I speak to someone who ONLY buys music via iTunes and says things like, "Oh, I didn't buy the whole album." Imagine if, back in the day, I'd discovered "God of Thunder" and just bought that track on iTunes. I'd have missed out on the entire album, seeing the artwork, etc.

Food for thought.


Edited by Robbie Parry on 04 November 2016 at 6:59am
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Bill Collins
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Posted: 04 November 2016 at 7:22am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

I agree Robbie,like you,the imagery was a big part for me,it really captured my imagination.My bedroom wall in the 80`s was plastered with Iron Maiden Derek Riggs tour and album posters.I pity the youth of today who will never get the pleasure of spotting all the little details and easter eggs in album art! Take Iron Maiden`s Somewhere In Time artwork,all the little Iron Maiden easter eggs and Sci-Fi easter eggs like Batman,The Tardis ans Fireball XL-5 to name a few!
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 04 November 2016 at 10:24am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Absolutely!

I'm sure some young folk buy CDs, but I have come across a disproportionate number who say things like, "Oh, I'll get one or two tracks from iTunes." Or, "Oh, I've downloaded the entire album, I may get around to listening to it one day."

I bought an entire album like DESTROYER. Because it was a physical product, I had it on my mind and knew I'd listen to it (often straightaway).

I see a parallel with eBooks. I had almost forgotten about my Kindle Fire until I recharged the battery recently. Browsed the library of books, some of which I had forgotten about. However, physical books that I own are on my shelf and it reminds me to "read them ASAP". 
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 04 November 2016 at 8:48pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply


(I forgot to mention that I also saw KISS on the REVENGE tour in 1992, and an Ace Frehley club show somewhere in the early '90s... and there was a four-year period (1991-94, I believe) where I dressed-up in KISS make-up for four consecutive Halloweens, whether it was for work, a costume party, or trick-or-treating with my kid sister... she freaked-out when she first saw me in a big, black wig and Gene Simmons make-up, back when she was only 3!)



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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 05 November 2016 at 10:25am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

That's great to hear. :-D

I've never really dressed up as anything (too lazy for that). If I ever do, though, it'll be as one of KISS... 
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Brian Miller
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Posted: 05 November 2016 at 4:23pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Here's my list of tours I've seen:

Hot in the Shade
Revenge
Reunion twice
Psycho Circus
Farewell
Double bill tour with Aerosmith
Alive 35

My favorite show is probably the '92 Revenge show even tho I had a terrible stomach bug. 

Second is probably Alive 35. Even tho they didn't do Got to Choose, I did finally get She. 

Third is Hot in the Shade. You never forget your first. 

I would've loved to have seen one of the late '94/ early '95 shows. Other than early original band, this is by far my favorite era of the band. 

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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 05 November 2016 at 7:05pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

I'm really happy there's some KISS fans here. I hope we keep this topic going. So much to discuss. 

KISS share some great images on their Twitter feed, too.
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Craig Markley
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Posted: 07 November 2016 at 8:08am | IP Logged | 9 post reply



This is me at 10yo in June of 1979. We had a room above a barn my dad built. You can see some of my KISS pictures from various magazines. The Star Wars poster was from a Burger King collection. I still have those posters. You can see the Star Wars pull-out from CRACKED magazine. The fish picture was from National Geographic World.

I have another picture somewhere that shows another part of the room. It shows the Spirit of '76 poster from KISS and another poster of Peter Criss singing Beth.
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 07 November 2016 at 8:33am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Cool thing to share, thanks for doing that, Craig! :)
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 07 November 2016 at 10:04pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply


Great picture, Craig... though you get docked 2 points for that Bee Gees/Sgt. Pepper's pin-up...!


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Bill Collins
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Posted: 08 November 2016 at 1:20am | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Great pic Craig!
My concerts are...

Dynasty 1980
Lick It Up 1983
Not sure of tour but around 1985 with Tank drum riser!
Reunion Tour.
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Craig Markley
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Posted: 08 November 2016 at 6:45am | IP Logged | 13 post reply

Great picture, Craig... though you get docked 2 points for that Bee Gees/Sgt. Pepper's pin-up...!
******************

Very funny! I was a Beatle fan mostly. I do remember seeing the Sgt. Pepper movie in a double feature with CONVOY. Who could forget the topless scene with Ali MacGraw?

As for KISS, I saw their Asylum tour and their Alive/Worldwide tour.

I still have my original KISS trading cards as well!
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 08 November 2016 at 6:51am | IP Logged | 14 post reply

Still have my original KISS trading cards as well!

***

Did you say you wanted a roommate? I'll pay $800 a month. 
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Brian Rhodes
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Posted: 09 November 2016 at 3:19pm | IP Logged | 15 post reply

One of my two older brothers got DESTROYER on vinyl pretty much right when it came out in 1976. I would have been 6 years old, about to turn 7. We also had THE ORIGINALS, which were the first three studio albums re-released packaged as a set. We had the 45 of Rock and Roll All Nite, as well (with both studio and live versions). Not too much later, I'd pick up the  ALIVE! double album. And, when it was released (also in 76), we got ROCK AND ROLL OVER on 8-track!

By this age, I was already reading comics. So, that DESTROYER cover really caught my eye. They were like weird-looking super-heroes! And the music was pretty catchy! The materials that came with THE ORIGINALS and ALIVE! were also a treat for my very visually-oriented mind. And that ROCK AND ROLL OVER cover...wow. Now, they really looked like something out of a comic book.  Of course, the would soon become literal comic book superheroes....

Adding to that particular mystique: they had secret identities! Very few knew what they looked like out of the make-up. For years! 

Of course, I got LOVE GUN (with another great Ken Kelly painted cover, like DESTROYER), ALIVE II, DOUBLE PLATINUM, The Solo albums, DYNASTY, UNMASKED (with a comic strip cover), and, yes, MUSIC FROM THE ELDER, which I like and still like. I held off on getting CREATURES. And once the make-up came off, I totally lost interest in new releases by the band, for a time. 

Watched and loved KISS MEETS THE PHANTOM. It's still holds a so-bad-it's-good allure for me. I had the 12-inch action figures (still have the Gene!), the trading cards (complete set, still), I got the Marvel comic books - and many subsequent ones - and yes, will probably check out the new ones. And I maintain a "KISS Room" in my home with memorabilia collected over the decades. I recently met Ken Kelly and had him sign my DESTROYER (and RESURRECTED) and LOVE GUN covers, and he did a Gene sketch for me, too. They're all on the wall along with a ton of other stuff.  

And yes, I eventually got - an enjoy - CREATURES OF THE NIGHT. Really like REVENGE, too. CARNIVAL OF SOULS has the band sounding really tight and...grown up. Not necessarily things you'd expect (or maybe even want) from a KISS album. PSYCHO CIRCUS had the nostalgia factor, but to me, not much has held up from it. SONIC BOOM kinda reminded me of RNRO. MONSTER...some ok songs, but I haven't listened to it much.

I've dressed up like Gene Simmons for Halloween 4 times in my life, at the ages of 9, 10, 25, and 30. 

My first KISS concert was during The Reunion Tour. I could never get anyone to take me as a kid, and, again, the were out of the make-up and costumes by the time I could drive myself to a show, so, I wasn't all that interested. But, with the Reunion, I wasn't gonna miss out.

I've seen them, I think, 12 times. For the SONIC BOOM tour, I got a front row/meet-and-greet package. That was absolutely awesome!

My favorite band, to be sure. And Gene has always been my favorite member/character. Favorite album? It changes...but right now (and often), it's ROCK AND ROLL OVER. Just a straight ahead rocker. I love all of those first 5 studio albums (6 if you count ALIVE!  Ha.), but RNRO just stands out, for me.




Edited by Brian Rhodes on 09 November 2016 at 3:26pm
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 09 November 2016 at 5:53pm | IP Logged | 16 post reply

My favorite band, to be sure.

***

Well, they are the best band in the universe, right? 
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 09 November 2016 at 9:50pm | IP Logged | 17 post reply


KISS are a top 10 all-time favorite band of mine, easily.

But "best band in the universe?" The Beatles.


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Brian Miller
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 6:51am | IP Logged | 18 post reply

Bill, according to KISS ALIVE FOREVER, the last time the tank turret drum riser appeared in Europe was the 1983 Lick It Up tour. 
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Doug Centers
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 7:01am | IP Logged | 19 post reply

OK, you guys got me in the mood to put in my Kissology vol. 1 dvd's.

I just love the concerts from the seventies.
And their visit to Cadillac ,Michigan (which I remember being all over the news around here) is a hoot to watch!

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Bill Collins
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 7:52am | IP Logged | 20 post reply

Brian,i`ve just done a bit of internet research...

My 80`s concerts were actually,

Unmasked 1980
Lick It Up 1983
Animalize 1984( I couldn`t believe Kiss toured the U.K. twice within a year!) 
All of the above at Bingley Hall,Stafford.

Reunion Tour.

I did try to see them at the Monsters Of Rock festival at Donington in 1988,but i had to work,one of the few Monsters Of Rock`s i missed during the 80`s.Having said that,two fans died in a crowd surge during Guns n Roses set,so the event was marred by that.


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Brian Miller
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 8:55am | IP Logged | 21 post reply

You got some great shows there, Bill!
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Bill Collins
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 9:36am | IP Logged | 22 post reply

Very true Brian,the best was Unmasked...make-up,Ace on form and Eric The Fox Carr on drums,it was also my first Kiss gig! One thing that sticks in my mind,support band was `Girl` a Glam/Metal type band with a pre-Def Leppard Phil Collen on guitar.They were mercilessly `Gobbed on` by certain punters for wearing make-up and being a bit camp...some Kiss fans don`t do irony!

Edited by Bill Collins on 10 November 2016 at 9:36am
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Brian Miller
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 11:57am | IP Logged | 23 post reply

If any of you guys haven't read the book i referenced earlier, KISS ALIVE FOREVER, you really need to. Not only is it a complete live chronicle of their live shows thru the Farewell Tour ( I don't think it goes past that), but it's also one of the most informative books I've ever read about the band. The authors interviewed most, if not all, of the band's original crew up thru at tleast the 80's as well as other various members of their touring entourage. I can't recommend this book highly enough. It's readily availabe thru Amazon and still goes for cover price or cheaper.

I emailed one of the authors a few years ago and he informed me that, yes, they were working on a volume 2, but weren't finished with it and didn't know when it would come out.

I'm getting Paul's book for Christmas.

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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 11:59am | IP Logged | 24 post reply

Definitely great reading all these thoughts.

I propose we let the thread just run. Random KISS thoughts welcome, based on what they are doing now or have done. Does that sound a good idea?
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Bill Collins
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Posted: 10 November 2016 at 1:04pm | IP Logged | 25 post reply

Excellent idea Robbie!
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