Today in Music History: September 18
KISS in 1973 as a club band. Paul still had the old make-up
KISS in 1983 without the make-up.
KISS In 1973, the hard rock band KISS forms in New York City well known for its outrageous face paint. Each member represents a character. Simmons is The Demon, Frehley is The Spaceman, Stanley is The Star Child, Criss is The Cat, and Carr was The Fox. Vincent briefly wore makeup with an Ankh design in his early concerts with the group. The band name made for lots of speculation, the most popular being "Knights In Satan's Service." The truth is much more mundane: Paul Stanley came up with the name and the others loved it. Peter Criss explained in a 1977 Marvel profile, "It really means a lot. It's the first thing you do to a chick or anybody. It could also be the kiss of death. It's a strong word. It's easy to remember."
Most music critics hated the band. They are not considered great musicians, but are known for their live performances, which their core fans, The KISS Army, loves. In 1977, Kiss was named the most popular band in America in a Gallup Poll. Go figure! Kiss was eligible for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for 15 years before they finally were inducted in 2014.
All on September 18...
1978 The KISS Solo Albums: Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Peter Criss and Ace Frehley were released. The Solo Albums represented the first time ever that all the members of a band released solo works on the same day. All 4 albums shipped platinum!
1983 KISS appeared without their 'make-up' for the first time during an interview on MTV, promoting the release of their newest album, 'Lick It Up'.
What happened to this great band? Well, that my friends would take a team of psychologists and a novel to explain. So, I will try and simplify. KISS got caught up in their mega-success and every decision was based around how to maintain and expand that success. KISS tried disco, pop, whatever was hip at the time, in order to stay on the charts. The problem, in a nutshell, is that KISS started as a band that defied the trends, ignored fashion, ignored critics, and succeeded on their own terms. They made their name on constant touring, not on getting Top 40 radio airplay. KISS got lost. They forgot what made them. Read this and MORE...
1987 KISS released their platinum album 'CRAZY NIGHTS.'
And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times...