‘Big Gold Record Stars’ Tour Kicks Off

February 20th: On this Day

1958: ‘The Big Gold Record Stars’ six-day tour of Florida begins, featuring Bill Haley and his Comets, The Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly & The Crickets, Jerry Lee Lewis and Jimmie Rodgers.

1959: A 16-year-old Jimi Hendrix makes his stage playing a show at the Temple De Hirsch Sinai synagogue in Seattle

1963: The Beatles drive tirelessly through the night from Liverpool to London to appear on the live lunchtime BBC radio program “Parade of the Pops.”

1976: All four members of KISS have their footprints imprinted on the pavement outside Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood.

1977: Steve Wonder wins Grammy Awards for Best album with ‘Songs In The Key Of Life’, and Best Vocal performance for ‘I Wish.’

1980: AC/DC singer Bon Scott is pronounced dead upon arrival at a London hospital after a heavy night’s drinking.

1991: Bob Dylan is awarded a lifetime achievement award at the 33rd annual Grammy’ Awards.

Kiss Announce Farewell Tour

This Day in Rock History (Feb. 14)

In 2000 – Kiss announce their farewell tour. The reunited foursome will don the makeup one last time, then sell off the stage props from a 30-year career in an auction. Their “retirement” was short lived. They kicked off their “World Domination Tour” in 2003.

In 1999 – Elton John appears as himself on a special Valentine’s Day edition of The Simpsons.

In 1981 – Singer Billy Idol leaves his band Generation X to pursue a solo career.

And in 1986 – Even Frank Zappa thought Miami Vice was cool.

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KISS Signs First Contract

On Jan. 8, 1974, the band KISS is signed to its first recording contract. Members manage to drum up some press by performing a “dress rehearsal” shortly after signing to Casablanca Records and honing their carnival-esque image. A reporter from Rolling Stone said, “The group plays very heavy, loud and ultimately monotonous rock in the Black Sabbath tradition. … A sure crowd-pleaser. The crowds of kiddies, that is.”


Gene Simmons and Ace Frehley Team Up on New Songs

Let the KISS reunion rumors begin!

KISS bassist Gene Simmons recently revealed that he worked with Ace Frehley on his new studio album, co-writing two tracks.

Simmons was interviewed last week on Facebook Live on 92KQRS in Minnesota and revealed the news. “Literally two days ago I was with Ace”. “He asked me to write for his next solo record. So I went over to his place, way out in the desert someplace and we wrote two things.”

This collaboration marks the first time since 1998 that the duo has worked together in the studio, their last venture being the KISS album Psycho Circus.

Currently, there is no release date for Frehley’s untitled project.



Gene Simmons Abandons Application to Trademark Devil Horns

After backlash from critics, fans, and his peers, it appears Gene Simmons has withdrawn his application to trademark the “devil horns” hand gesture.

The co-founder of KISS filed the paperwork, claiming that he first made the sign in 1974. The sign has a variety of meanings in different cultures and is used by many musicians over a variety of genres. Simmons’ efforts were immediately met with backlash.

The “devil horns” usually are linked to Ronnie James Dio, who’s widow was one of the first to speak up about this situation. Wendy, Dio’s widow, called the idea of the trademark “disgusting,” arguing Simmons had “made a complete fool of himself,” and insisting, “It belongs to everyone; it doesn’t belong to anyone. … It’s a public domain; it shouldn’t be trademarked.”

According to Forbes, the application has been “expressly abandoned”, and while no public comment or reason was provided, the report notes “Hand gestures in and of themselves cannot function as trademarks. And, even if they could, there would be no practical way to enforce the trademark against others.”

KISS Releases A Line of Phone Covers and Wallpapers

KISS always seems to have their logo on any product that will allow it, and now you can add cell phones to the list.

The group has launched a line of covers and wallpapers for Google’s Pixel and Nexus phones. Collaborating with Sophie Simmons, daughter of KISS icon Gene Simmons, the band created a total of 12 designs that “re-imagine the band’s unparalleled visual history for the digital age and bring the Kiss Experience to the palm of your hand.”

Each cover comes with live wallpapers that were captured by Sophie and Nick Simmons on the recent European tour.

Sophie says: “Growing up, we saw Kiss as pop culture figures. It wasn’t so much the music for my generation, but the visual impact is unparalleled in music.”

Gene Simmons adds: “I love the idea that the Live Cases are going to enhance the experience of being a fan. Especially, making it more personalized. And that part is the most important thing for me.”

The Live Case Artworks are now available via Google,

John Mellencamp: Rock’s Glory Days Are Over

John Mellencamp has joined the likes of former KISS drummer Peter Criss in thinking that Rock is no longer relevant and that it’s never coming back.

During a Q&A session for the Direct Connection event series, Mellencamp explained his stance off the consuming and staying power of music.

“I’ve got two boys, 22 and 21, and I don’t think they ever sat down and listened to a whole album in their whole life,” said Mellencamp. “I read just the other day — I think it was Ray Davies — that rock ‘n’ roll is going to come back. It’s not going to come back. We’ve seen it. It happened … it’s like we had a 50-year run of a particular type of music and history will tell us that.”

When someone pointed out that rock was just one of the styles of music that had its turn on top of the charts, Mellencamp argued that it wasn’t just the cyclical taste that hurt rock’s time at the top, but the way the industry is hobbled by the rapid amount of entertainment options for the consumer.

“I’m not saying there aren’t great songwriters out there. There are,” he added. “But we’re never going to experience them the way we able to experience them in the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s. We’re not set up for that anymore.”

Though Mellencamp believes the heyday of rock is over, he recently released his new album, Sad Clowns and Hillbillies.

KISS Launch Online Auction To Aid Teenage Cancer Trust

KISS has teamed up with The Teenage Cancer Trust and Charitystars.com  for an online auction to help their amazing cause.

The winner of the auction, along with a guest, will win a meet and greet with the band before their May 31st show at the O2 Arena, along with an exclusive 30-minute acoustic set.


The highest bidder will also get a photograph with the group, a private tour of the venue, and will receive a Paul Stanley Custom Ibanez guitar signed by the group to take home.

All proceeds from the online auction will go to The Teenage Cancer Trust which provides vital cancer services for young people across the UK.

KISS previously auctioned signed guitars and VIP tickets to their Download show in 2015, supporting the charity.

KISS Releasing Triathlon Bike

KISS has always been known for their ability to put the KISS brand on just about everything. The band has added to that ability by partnering up with Sciacallo Bikes.

The bicycle company has teamed up with KISS to release a premium triathlon bicycle, which is decked out with the band’s famous logo.

The bike was designed by a Sciacallo employee, Milan Skrecek, who is a lifelong Kiss fan.

“Growing up in the Prairies in the 70s, 80s and 90s was great times. Long summer nights up at Grand Beach with all of your friends listening to, who else, Kiss.”

Skrecek added, “My best friend Darrell and I were huge Kiss fans and we spent a big part of our lives going to concerts, dressing up at Halloween as our favorite icon – I was always The Star Child – and loving the feeling we got while listening to Kiss. It’s good time rock’n’roll – something to take your mind off things, to relax, to let go.”

If fans or bike enthusiasts aren’t interested in the full bike, the company will also be selling carbon fiber wheelsets, a real wheel featuring images of the band, and a tri-spoke front wheel. All of these include the KISS symbols and logo.


Katey Sagal Says Gene Simmons Laughed at the Idea of Marrying Her

Though Katey Sagal is known for her roles in Married…With Children and Sons of Anarchy, she actually started her career as a singer-songwriter. During that time, Sagal recorded backing vocals for Gene Simmon’s debut solo album, in 1978.

In her newly released memoir, Grace Notes: My Recollections, she revealed that she had an on-and-off relationship with Kiss icon in the ‘70s, that ended when she discussed marriage and he laughed at her.

In the book, Sagal writes about meeting Simmons in a bar in Santa Monica, where she worked as a singing waitress. “At first, I thought Gene was really weird,” she said. “I took him home with me that night because he was quite persuasive, and I like men.”

The two’s affair continued through a number of years, coming to an end when Sagal gave Simmons an ultimatum. She told Simmons that she was going to marry Freddie Beckmeier of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band unless Simmons proposed.  Simmons, apparently, laughed at her suggestion, so she married Beckmeier. They divorced three years later.


This isn’t the first time Simmons has scoffed at the idea of marriage, mocking it publicly for years. He seemed to be so against it that in 2005, Paul Stanley refused to invite him to his wedding.

Simmons eventually tied the knot with longtime girlfriend Shannon Tweed in 2011.

Sagal’s memoir is described by publisher Gallery Books as a journey “from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of 28 to getting her big break as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on Married … With Children.” It’s on sale now.



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