Saturday, July 31, 2010
Win Chat with Bruce Kulick
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Fans attending The Hottest Show on Earth tour, KISS’ biggest, loudest, most over-the-top concert tour ever that kicked-off July 23 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, will become the first to have photos of KISS, themselves, and their friends experiencing the raw power and excitement of a live KISS concert, appear live on giant KISS video screens. Through a free downloadable app, KISS fans can snap photos during the concert with the highlights being displayed on the KISS jumbo screen. Users will also be able to share photos to Facebook and Twitter, bringing their friends into the live concert experience.
The new KISS Liveshare experience is the first time that the excitement and energy of a concert can be shared in real time with friends and fans that can't be at the live event. Photos taken at the Hottest Show on Earth will appear on Facebook and KISSonline while the event is unfolding, allowing fans to immerse themselves in the concert photos through the popular Cooliris 3D wall.
KISS is excited to be able to bring this awesome concert experience to fans wherever they may be. The free Liveshare app featuring KISS will be available for download at the iTunes Store and Android Market. KISS is the first band ever to launch such a highly-interactive and socially-engaging fan photo experience. KISS and Live Nation Merchandise partnered with Los Angeles-based new media firm Riot House and Cooliris, innovator of the fastest and most stunning way to engage with media on desktops or devices, to bring KISS Liveshare to fans on The Hottest Show on Earth tour. For more information, visit http://www.cooliris.com/liveshare-kiss
Friday, July 30, 2010
KISS returns to Mexico for the first time since 2004 with three scheduled shows this fall!
Sept 28 Monterey, Mexico - Teatro Banamex
Sept 30 Mexico City, Mexico - Sports Palace
Oct 2 Guadalajara, Mexico - Estadio 3 De Marzo
Paul resonds via Twitter: "Lady Gaga - You Wanted The Best, You Got the Best. We're out on our Hottest Show On Earth Tour. Pick your city and join us. Paul"
Elite Works on Ebay has released this teaser of "War Machine" from October 10, 1992 at the Spectrum in Philadelphia.
You may view the auctions here.
By Paul Clark
The classic metal band Kiss will play tonight at Riverbend, featuring founding members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley along with drummer Eric Singer and lead guitarist Tommy Thayer. We talked last week with Thayer, who replaced Ace Frehley eight years ago as the band's "Spaceman" character.
Question: You came to Kiss by way of the band Black 'n Blue and after playing with a Kiss tribute band, and you actually started with Kiss as a kind of "Man Friday", is that correct?
Answer: All of the above. I'd been with Black 'n Blue in the '80s, and we were lucky enough to open for Kiss. The relationship evolved from there, through all the ups and downs.* Take our KISS quiz
Q: You're a better musician than Ace is - do you think beneath all the face paint you've carved out your own identity?A: When I came in, in 2002, I had big shoes to fill. Ace had a legacy and really helped established what Kiss was. It's a slow process, but I'm the guy now.
The Hottest Show on Earth tour which kicked off July 23 in Cheyenne, Wyoming and will be hitting Cincinnati Friday, July 30 at Riverbend Music Center. The boy are back with a tour that is bigger than ever and they are attracting whole new generations of fans.
We caught up with Ohio native, Eric Singer aka "CATMAN", drummer for the infamous band, to discuss local sports and the show on Friday.
CB: First question, how do you feel about Lebron leaving?
Eric: I get asked that obvious question a lot because everyone knows I am from Cleveland. We are all in a business. I am in the music business and he is in business as well for himself. I just tell people that there are good ways and not so good way to do these things. I think the way he chose is not the best way and not a good choice. He is trying to market himself and be his own brand like Jordan and he has been pretty successful. The best analogy is like you go on national TV and tell your wife that you are going to divorce her and that you found a new girl in Miami. He should not have done that. He should have done it like a typical announcement through an agent. I read that when Michael Jordon decided to re-up his contract with the Bulls that he just sent them a fax to tell them. He didn't go through some big announcement and make a big deal about it. I believe he knew well in advance and did not just decide that day like he said he did, but I guess only he knows. I am not saying it is a disloyalty thing because he was a free agent. It was just the way that he did it was not appropriate.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Introducing the new line of RTC officially licensed KISS HDTV LED televisions. Featuring the legendary logos of KISS, the KISS LED TV is one of the finest LED televisions on the market. These televisions will make the ultimate statement in your home, bar, restaurant or wherever the KISS HD LED televisions find their homes.This first limited edition KISS LED Television is available in three sizes: 32", 40" and 46". This collector's edition KISS LED TV is limited to 15,000 pieces worldwide and features a diamond plated look to the casing with the KISS logos embossed on each side. The live image of KISS appears on the screen for eight seconds when the TV is powered on and includes a collector's edition packaging.The KISS LED Televisions offer razor sharp clarity with 1080Pfull high definition resolution and a 120HZ refresh rate delivering sharp, blur free images. The dynamic 3,000,000:1 contrast ratio presents deeper blacks and brighter whites with colors that stand out brilliantly adding to the rich detail and deep contrast on this HDTV.http://kisshdtv.com/
Monday, July 26, 2010
The performance of KISS at the North Dakota State Fair brought 15,082 people to the new grandstand Saturday night, the second day of the fair.
That attendance was up 3,232 from the number of those attending the Taylor Swift concert on the second night of last year's fair, State Fair officials said. KISS was the first rock act to perform in the new grandstand.
One dollar of every ticket purchased for the KISS concert will be going to the CSRA Wounded Warrior Project which directly benefits members of the armed forces. Last week Laurie Ott, executive director of the project in Augusta, Ga., said the fact that KISS and the State Fair "recognize the importance of this mission speaks volumes about their interest in our nation's troops and their families and their support for them." KISS took the stage about 9:30 p.m. Saturday and gave an approximately two-hour performance. Alana Grace was the opening performer for KISS. At the end of the night, there was a dazzling fireworks display.
Sunday, July 25, 2010
The group is set to embark on its 32-date "Hottest Show on Earth" tour of the United States and Canada that starts on Friday in Cheyenne, Wyo., and ends in Fontana, Calif., in September to promote its "Sonic Boom" album.
The fact that KISS still plays 15,000-seat venues 37 years into its career comes from providing fans with what they want and touring with regularity, even when the band's popularity ebbed and flowed, its lead singer said.
"It's about the marathon," KISS co-founder Paul Stanley told Reuters. "It's more about who lasts the longest -- if you're depressed or lose your drive because of one tour or one show, then you're in the wrong business."
Stanley says fans are now "more discerning" and artists have to give them high-quality, high production entertainment if they hope to fill arenas and amphitheaters during this economic downturn. "They want bang for their buck," he said.
KISS has been riding a wave of renewed popularity since it put its trademark make-up back on in 1996, in contrast to the early 1980s when album and ticket sales plummeted and the band was regarded as hard rock has-beens.
Several artists have been finding this summer a tough slog. Earlier this month, concert industry publication Pollstar said that ticket sales from the top 100 tours in North America had slipped 17 percent in the first half of 2010, compared to a year ago.
Read the rest here http://www.2thedeuce.com/entertainment/sns-kiss-tour,0,6451379.story
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Gene Talks to Billboard
by Gary Graff, Detroit/Billboard.com
KISS For Kids could well be the theme of the iconic rock group's just-started North American tour.
In a novel move for its amphitheater dates, the costumed quartet is giving free lawn tickets to up to four children with each paying adult.
"It's time to give back," bassist Gene Simmons explains to Billboard.com, adding that KISS -- which is also donating $1 per ticket to the Wounded Warrior foundation -- hopes to show the youths "that there's another world out there besides Hannah Montana and the Jonas Brothers. It's important for them to see how the big boys do it. There's no tapes. There's no background singers backstage. There's no click tracks. It's important for the kids to see that whatever you see on stage is real. We want to spread this. I'm insulted by any act that goes up there with dancers and tapes. It's insulting."
KISS hopes to snare the kids more in the near future via an animated program that's being produced in partnership with E1 Entertainment and will feature the four KISS members as characters. Simmons says he hopes to have the program on air "in the next six months."
Meanwhile, he and his bandmates are planning to give fans old and young alike a freshened KISS show after focusing on the group's "Alive!" album -- which turns 35 this year -- during last year's road trek. "Technology has enabled us to do all kinds of wacky stuff," Simmons explains, while the repertoire includes three songs from last year's "Sonic Boom" album -- "Modern Day Delilah," "Say Yeah" and "Animal" -- as well as the seldom-performed "Crazy Nights." And drummer Eric Singer will be taking over the Peter Criss-sung smash "Beth" each night.
"It's acoustic -- there will be no tapes, just two acoustic guitars and bass and that's it," says Simmons, adding that KISS had previously kept the song out of the shows "out of deference to Peter Criss," who has left the band three times, most recently in 2004. "We still have a tug of the heart...Peter and Ace [Frehley] are beloved, as well they should be for the beginning, for helping launch the band. But it's important to note that with them in the band today, KISS wouldn't be around."
Simmons says KISS is anxious to work on a follow-up to "Sonic Boom," the group's first new studio album in 11 years. But he won't guess when that will be. "I think we'll do another one, but we need time," Simmons explains, noting the group's heavy touring schedule as well as his continuing "Gene Simmons Family Jewels" reality series on A&E and co-founder Paul Stanley's burgeoning art career.
The next KISS project will likely be a fourth version of the popular "KISSology" DVD series, which Simmons says is coming "soon" and will feature "some new stuff but some stuff nobody's ever seen before, going all the way back to 1973." The group is also expecting to film a third commercial for Dr. Pepper in the near future.
Would you travel 700 miles to compete at the rodeo? How about over 8,000 miles to attend a KISS concert? For fans of Cheyenne Frontier Days, the sky is the limit.
We went to Cheyenne Regional Airport to check out the activity of the people coming to the cowboy state.
"Wherever KISS goes...I'll be there!" said Steve Mcnair. He spent 17 hours on an airplane and says it's a small price to pay to see his favorite band perform live in concert.
By David Marchese
What will KISS fans see on this tour that they haven't seen before?
There's more pyro. The whole stage, in essence, is a video screen -- all the amplifiers double as video screens and there are massive video screens behind us as well. The projections on them are phenomenal. There's a part of the show where [drummer] Eric [Singer] and [guitarist] Tommy [Thayer] do a great musical duel. We're using technology to make a bigger and better gun.
A love gun, if you will.[Laughs]
It's a gun that's better than having guys dancing around trying to mount each other while somebody lip-syncs.
You've been onstage with fireworks going off behind you for 35 years. What keeps it fresh?
The first order of business is to please ourselves. Are we changing things up for the fans? We change things up for us. You have to bear in mind that we started out wanting to be the band that we never saw. That continues to be the philosophy. We want to do the greatest show we can for us. I want the band to live up to everything it can possibly be. So this tour, which is a continuation of the Sonic Boom Over Europe tour, is by far the best and greatest show we've done. I think so. The fans think so. And the critics, by god, think so too.
Read the rest here http://www.spin.com/articles/qa-kiss-paul-stanley
Set-list courtesy of Bravewords
Here is the set-list and video from the show:
'Modern Day Delilah'
'Let Me Go, Rock 'N' Roll'
'Firehouse' -Gene breathes fire
'Crazy, Crazy Nights'
'Calling Dr. Love'
'Shock Me' -Eric Singer/Tommy Thayer solo
'I'm An Animal'
'I Love It Loud' -Gene spews blood
'Black Diamond' -Paul plays 'Whole Lotta' Love'
'Detroit Rock City'
'Lick It Up'
'Shout It Out Loud'
'I Was Made For Lovin' You' -Paul flys to the back
'God Gave Rock 'n' Roll To You II'
'Rock And Roll All Nite'
Friday, July 23, 2010
Kiss will kick off the Hottest Show On Earth tour tonight (July 23) in Cheyenne, Wyoming at Frontier Days. The will play 31 summer dates with The Academy Is and the ENvy opening along with the winners of the Kiss/Guitar Center contest for unsigned local bands. The winners will open up the Kiss show at their hometown venue.
KISS HOTTEST SHOW ON EARTH US SUMMER TOUR DATES:
23 - Cheyenne, WY - Cheyenne (Frontier Days)
24 - Minot, ND - North Dakota State Fair
29 - Pittsburgh, PA - First Niagara Pavilion
30 - Cincinnati, OH - Riverbend Music Center
31 - Hershey, PA - Hershey Park Stadium
6 - Philadelphia, PA - Susquehanna Bank Center
7 - Boston, MA - Comcast Center
9 - Indianapolis, IN - Indiana State Fairgrounds
13 - Buffalo, NY - Darien Lake Performing Arts Center
14 - Wantagh, NY - Nikon at Jones Beach Theater
15 - Scranton, PA - Toyota Pavilion
19 - Uncasville, CT - Mohegan Arena
20 - Holmdel, NJ - PNC Bank Arts Center
21 - Washington DC - Jiffy Lube Live
27 - Virginia Beach, VA - Virginia Beach Amphitheater
28 - Charlotte, NC - Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
29 - Raleigh, NC - Time Warner Cable Music Pavilion at Walnut Creek
31 - Atlanta, GA - Aaron's Amphitheatre At Lakewood
2 - Milwaukee, WI - Marcus Amphitheatre
3 - Chicago, IL - First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
4 - St. Paul, MN - Minnesota State Fair
10 - Toronto, ON - Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
11 - Detroit, MI - DTE Energy Music Theatre
12 - Cleveland, OH - Blossom Music Center
17 - Houston, TX - Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
18 - Dallas, TX - Pizza Hut Park
19 - San Antonio, TX - AT&T Center
22 - Sandy, UT - Rio Tinto Stadium
24 - Phoenix, AZ - Cricket Wireless Pavilion
25 - Fontana, CA - Auto Club Speedway of Southern California (Eclipse Festival)
Click below to see the preview-
Thursday, July 22, 2010
KISS frontman Paul Stanley was recently interviewed by CBS Los Angeles Entertainment reporter Christina McLarty for a feature on his career as an artist. Los Angeles residents will be able to tune in to the interview on July 22nd on KCAL 9 at 10:00pm PST. The interview will air again on July 23rd on the CBS 2 Morning News at 5:00am and 6:00am as McLarty takes viewers on a sneak peak inside Stanley's art studio. Go to this location for more information.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Following this special one hour episode comes the premire of "KISSTERIA", the one-hour KISS tour special produced by the Greif Company (co-producers of "Gene Simmons Family Jewels" show), will air on the A&E network Tuesday, July 20 at 10pm ET. "For the first time in their 35-year career, rock icons KISS give you an all access pass to the 'Alive 35' Australian tour. When Paul [Stanley] and Gene [Simmons] decide to launch a spontaneous mini-tour with only one week's notice, the entire KISS family must scramble to make it a reality. Malfunctioning pyrotechnics, faulty flying rigs and missing drummers are the least of their challenges."Upcoming Airings:Tuesday, July 20 @ 10pm/9CWednesday, July 21 @ 2am/1CSaturday, July 24 @ 4pm/3C
Here's a clip from last night's performance on NBC's 'the Tonight Show with Jay Leno':
Monday, July 19, 2010
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Celebrate the 100th episode of A&E's hit real-life series "Gene Simmons Family Jewels" with the legendary rock god and his unconventional family with a special one-hour episode on Tuesday, July 20 at 9PM ET/PT. http://www.aetv.com/gene-simmons-family-jewels/index.jsp
Following this special one hour episode comes the premire of "KISSTERIA", the one-hour KISS tour special produced by the Greif Company (co-producers of "Gene Simmons Family Jewels" show), will air on the A&E network Tuesday, July 20 at 10pm ET. "For the first time in their 35-year career, rock icons KISS give you an all access pass to the 'Alive 35' Australian tour. When Paul [Stanley] and Gene [Simmons] decide to launch a spontaneous mini-tour with only one week's notice, the entire KISS family must scramble to make it a reality. Malfunctioning pyrotechnics, faulty flying rigs and missing drummers are the least of their challenges."
Tuesday, July 20 @ 10pm/9C
Wednesday, July 21 @ 2am/1C
Saturday, July 24 @ 4pm/3C
Friday, July 16, 2010
Click http://eventful.com/performers/clashing-plaid-/P0-001-000225021-9 for Clashing Plaid at the Eventful website. Visit the band's website at http://www.clashingplaid.com/ .
by Ryan White/Oregonlive.com
I suppose it wouldn't be hard to find a drum roll somewhere in this digital expanse, but don't you just hate false drama?
The fine folks behind the Oregon Music Hall of Fame got together at Jimmy Mak's last night to announce this year's class. Here's what they said:
The Oregon Music Hall of Fame
Black 'N Blue: In the late 70's, a glam metal band appeared in Portland called Movie Star. The band included guitarist Tommy Thayer, vocalist Jamie St. James, drummer Pete Holmes, bassist Patrick Young and guitarist Jeff Warner. That band became Black 'N Blue, releasing their 1984 debut album on Geffen with the hit single "Hold On To 18". The band recorded three more albums for Geffen, with two produced by Gene Simmons of KISS. The band broke up in 1989, reuniting in 1997 and again in 2007. The band is currently reunited without Tommy, who replaced Ace Frehley in KISS in 2002.
This year's master of ceremonies will be the ever-colorful Tony Starlight. Two of this year's event performers were also announced: Shock, who were inducted into OMHOF in 2008, and one of this year's inductees, Black 'N Blue. Black 'N Blue will re-form the classic lineup of Tommy Thayer, Jamie St. James, Pete Holmes, Patrick Young and Jeff Warner.
Tickets go on sale Friday, July 16 through Tickets West outlets, including Fred Meyer and Music Millennium. Tickets are $25 in advance or $30 at the door. VIP tickets, which include reserved seating, after-induction party and poster, are $90 in advance.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Monday, July 12, 2010
Today would have been Eric Carr's 60th Birthday. Eric was born July 12, 1950 in Brooklyn, NY. Eric was responsible for the heavy John Bohnam inspired drumming on Kiss' return to heavier rock with Creatures of the Night in 1982. Eric recorded eight Kiss albums including Smashes, Thrashes & Hits in 1988 where he re-recorded Beth for the soundtrack for the motion picture 'Beautiful Girls.' Eric was also responsible for his 'in development' cartoon characters, 'the Rockheads,' with whom he was creating with longtime Kiss associate, Adam Mitchell. Eric passed away November 21, 1991 at age 41 after a year long battle with cancer.
Eric is interred in Cedar Hill Cemetery in Newburgh, New York.
Eric's solo from Animalized: Uncensored 1984 from Detroit, Michigan:
Eric's drum solo from 1990's Hot In The Shade tour from Detroit:
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Most recently, Aucoin founded Aucoin Globe Entertainment in 2007, developing artists in the United States and around the world.
Bill Aucoin passed away at the Aventura Hospital and Medical Center in Florida (Monday, June 28th) due to complications from Cancer & Diverticulitis.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Friday, July 9, 2010
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Here's one we are currently seeing on TV- the Kiss /Cherry Dr. Pepper ad:
Repeats on Wednesday, July 21 at 2:00 AM EST.
KISS makes a last minute decision to tour Australia in celebration of the 35th Anniversary of their landmark "Alive" album. Unfortunately, planning such a huge undertaking so quickly has its consequences, both onstage and off.
Our cameras are given unprecedented access into the world of KISS and what life is like for the legendary band on the road.
Click http://www.aetv.com/listings/episode_details.do?episodeid=579678&airingid=579838 for more information and repeat times and dates. Click http://history.resultspage.com/search?w=kissteria&v=aetv&x=19&y=5 to purchase the DVD from the A&E Shop for $24.95
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Pacific University Oregon's Joe Lang reports:
KISS founding member GENE SIMMONS will join the band's lead guitarist, Portland-area native Tommy Thayer, for Pacific University's 2010 Legends Golf Classic, hosted by Thayer on August 1st and 2nd at The Reserve Vineyards and Golf Club in Aloha. Producers from A&E's hit television series Gene Simmons Family Jewels will film portions of the event to chronicle golf novice Simmons' attempt at the sport. Prior to hitting the links on Monday, Augugust 2nd, Thayer will partake in a private concert on Sunday night with other celebrity musicians on hand, led by bassist and vocalist Jack Blades (NIGHT RANGER, DAMN YANKEES). Joining Blades and Thayer on stage will be Mark Bryan (HOOTIE & THE BLOWFISH), Ray Kennedy, Johnny Lee and Danny Seraphine (CHICAGO).
Team and individual reservations for the Legends Golf Classic are still available, but filling up quickly. To register, go to this location or call (503) 352-2211.
Fri 07/23/10 Cheyenne, WY Frontier Park
Appearing at "North Dakota State Fair"
Sat 07/24/10 Minot, ND North Dakota State Fair Center
Thu 07/29/10 Burgettstown, PA First Niagara Pavilion
Fri 07/30/10 Cincinnati, OH Riverbend Music Center
Sat 07/31/10 Hershey, PA Hersheypark Stadium
Fri 08/06/10 Camden, NJ Susquehanna Bank Center
Sat 08/07/10 Mansfield, MA Comcast Center
Appearing at "Indiana State Fair"
Mon 08/09/10 Indianapolis, IN Indiana State Fairgrounds
Tue 08/10/10 Sault Ste. Marie, ON Essar Centre
Fri 08/13/10 Darien Center, NY Darien Lake Performing Arts Center
Sat 08/14/10 Wantagh, NY Nikon At Jones Beach Theater
Sun 08/15/10 Scranton, PA Toyota Pavilion At Montage Mountain
Tue 08/17/10 Saratoga Springs, NY Saratoga Performing Arts Center
Thu 08/19/10 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun Arena
Fri 08/20/10 Holmdel, NJ PNC Bank Arts Center
Sat 08/21/10 Bristow, VA Jiffy Lube Live
Fri 08/27/10 Virginia Beach, VA Virginia Beach Amphitheater
Sat 08/28/10 Charlotte, NC Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
Sun 08/29/10 Raleigh, NC Time Warner Cable Music Pavilion
Thu 09/02/10 Milwaukee, WI Marcus Amphitheater
Fri 09/03/10 Tinley Park, IL First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
Appearing at "Minnesota State Fair"
Sat 09/04/10 Saint Paul, MN Minnesota State Fair Grandstand
Fri 09/10/10 Toronto, ON Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
Sat 09/11/10 Clarkston, MI DTE Energy Music Theatre
Sun 09/12/10 Cuyahoga Falls, OH Blossom Music Center
Fri 09/17/10 The Woodlands, TX The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
Sat 09/18/10 Frisco, TX Pizza Hut Park
Sun 09/19/10 San Antonio, TX AT&T Center
Wed 09/22/10 Sandy, UT Rio Tinto Stadium
Fri 09/24/10 Phoenix, AZ Cricket Wireless Pavilion
Appearing with "Epicenter Festival"
Sat 09/25/10 Fontana, CA Auto Club Speedway Of Southern California
By Julian Gill and Tim McPhate/KissFAQ.com
And so goes one of the initial tales of the legend that is KISS. The words? They were uttered by none other than Bill Aucoin during his first meeting with Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley in 1973, who as fate would have it were scheming a similar grand design for their new group KISS. In many ways, the pairing of KISS with Bill Aucoin -- the merging of two entities with big ideas -- was destiny.
Part manager, part businessman, part brother, and part parent, Bill Aucoin was also a visionary. He saw something special in a quartet of guys who played an aggressive brand of rock music and looked like a villain version of the New York Dolls, and formulated a plan to take them to the top. In a sense, Aucoin was also a high-stakes poker player, essentially gambling on his own dime in an attempt to take the rock that was KISS and polish it into a shiny diamond, along the way always projecting bluffs in the form of the "larger than life" KISS philosophy. The gamble would pay off as KISS and Bill Aucoin and his vision would ascend the greatest of heights and emerge the "hottest band in the world."
William Martin Aucoin was born Dec. 29, 1943, and grew up in Ayer, Mass., where his father ran a restaurant. He always wanted to be involved in broadcasting or entertainment and even built a radio station in his parent's basement as a teenager -- until it wad forced by the FCC to go off the air. While he was still a high school student he managed a band who signed to Verve Records, though nothing ever came of the act.
Attending Northeastern University, Aucoin majored in business administration but soon started paying dues for an entertainment career in interning at PBS' Boston affiliate, WGBH. While developing skills as a cameraman and directing, Aucoin also worked on production teams that conceptualized cooking ("Julia Childs' French Chef") and music ("Folk Music USA") shows.
Following graduation, Aucoin joined Teletape Productions in New York City to direct television commercials. His work for major New York advertising agencies earned him recognition through a CLIO Award (CLIO Awards honor advertising and design work in various mediums), and an Art Directors Award. During this time Aucoin also worked on a television special for Barbra Streisand and commercials for the presidential campaign of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy.
Before long, Aucoin was branching out with his own concepts.
Little came of "Saturday At The Movement" -- a pop culture-type program which is theorized by some as the basis for the long-running "Saturday Night Live" -- but Aucoin's music TV show, "Flipside," was in a vein similar to the two of the era's better-known programs, "Don Kirshner's Rock Concert" and “The Midnight Special.” Though short-lived, the show featured diverse musical acts from John Lennon to BJ Thomas and Stevie Wonder to Rick Derringer. (One episode would coincidentally feature a fiery young record label executive, Neil Bogart.)
Aucoin wanted the music side of the show to sound right to the artists, something which was often not the case with many music-based TV shows, resulting in the show being filmed in studios with the producers that the artists were familiar with. “Flipside” lasted but 13 episodes. A key figure who entered Aucoin's life at this time was Sean Delaney, who had been working as a musical waiter in the East Village (8 ). The two would remain partners throughout much of the '70s.
However, it would be those involved in "Flipside" who would become central to KISS' heyday as part of Rock Steady: Aucoin, associate producer Joyce Biawitz (who became KISS' co-manager, would marry Neil Bogart and later co-manage Donna Summer), and producer Howard Marks (later KISS’ business manager). After dealing with the politics of TV executives who thought that rock and contemporary musicians had no place on television, Aucoin decided to try his hand in the music industry, drawing upon his ability to manage musical talent, his directorial background and a sharpening business acumen.
Gene Simmons had noted Aucoin’s name from the NBC broadcasts of “Flipside” and was contacting him with "weekly bulletins." "My only thought about it, from looking at the pictures, was that they'd be a terrific performing band," joked Aucoin. (1)
It would be another record executive who invited Aucoin to go to a KISS showcase at the Hotel Diplomat. Following that show, Aucoin famously offered the band 30 days to get them a contract or he would walk away.
To his credit, Aucoin saw a potential right away, a potential for big things. "When I met Gene and Paul, I said, 'If we're going to do it, if you're interesting in working hard and making this a major, major group, then I'd be willing to put as much as I can behind it,'" he said. (2)
The band, in turn, was also impressed with both Aucoin's spirit and his professional profile.
"Back then, I knew that the manager of KISS would have to be a multimedia person," said Simmons. "[KISS] was going to be a multimedia group... So Bill's television and film background were crucial." (2)
"I remember the first thing I asked him was, 'Why do you want to do this? What's in it for you?'" recalled Stanley. "He said, 'I've never done this before and I want to put together the kind of band that's gonna be the biggest band in the world.'" Peter Criss was also convinced: "I liked him right away. When I met him, I was impressed. I felt he was honest." (2)
Aucoin made good on his promise and got the band signed to the Neil Bogart's fledgling Casablanca Records, and then started the work of honing the rough edges around the band. He immediately took to building on the basic KISS idea and made them wear full unified white-face makeup designs, where previously each band member had been doing their own thing visually. This separated the band from the New York Dolls' visual style of glam, and the direction was an obvious spin-off from Aucoin’s background as a TV producer/director. He also drew upon his background skills to videotape the band rehearsing and then playback the results so that the band could see how they looked when performing. This was an important element of refining the KISS show, and allowed them to be better directed and choreographed.
Aucoin was also responsible for the several of the band's key gimmicks, notably the fire-breathing. "To put it bluntly, the four of us created the makeup, the logo, the tunes, and the look and feel of KISS," said Simmons. "But it was Bill who took it all the way." (2)
But, again visually, Aucoin was already ahead of the game in presenting the band with their first lighted stage logo, to replace their tattered spider-web backdrop, at their first professional show, opening for Iggy Pop and Blue Oyster Cult on Dec. 31, 1973. This set the stage for Aucoin's full investment and commitment to the band.
As another example of his management skill-set, Aucoin saw the importance of financial equality among the band members. "I approached the guys and said, 'We all agree that we're going to be a major act, and that means a lot of money. In the long run, the difference between one person making a few thousand or even a few hundred thousand dollars is not going to mean anything. I don't want you to break up over money.... Let's make our arrangements so unified that nothing can destroy." (2)
Early tours were designed to expose the band to as wide a rock audience as possible. But KISS, with its one-of-a-kind stage show and theatrics, began encountering problems from the get-go. "We used to have fights with Blue Oyster Cult and Black Sabbath," said Aucoin. "They just couldn't believe it, 'What is this act that's opening up for us? This makeup rock and roll band!'" (4)
In another testament to his gambling proclivities, it has been suggested that Aucoin put a quarter of a million dollars of his own money into KISS during these crucial formative years. "Bill Aucoin had used his American Express credit card to push the band for the first like 18 months to two years of their career," said producer/engineer Eddie Kramer. (4)
"I had never put more than about $100 on my American Express card," remembered Aucoin. "And I'll never forget getting a call from American Express and they said, "Mr. Aucoin, you've spent $25,000 this month. Do you expect to pay it?' (laughs) And of course I said, 'Absolutely, no question about it. I'm gonna pay it.' Knowing there wasn't a chance!" (4)
With Aucoin putting up his own money, and sales of KISS' first trio of albums failing to light up the charts, financial situations had turned dire for not only him, but the band and Casablanca Records. For 1975's "Dressed To Kill" album cover photo shoot, there wasn't even enough of a budget for wardrobe rental, as KISS had to borrow four of Aucoin's suits for the shoot.
"We didn't have any money. In fact, I couldn't afford rent," said Aucoin. "Fortunately, I lived in a house where the landlady was a creative person and so she understood. So she just let it slide for a while. My friends said I was nuts because I managed a group wearing makeup." (2)
It was during this time that Aucoin would assume the role of sole manager of the group, as he had been sharing managing duties with Joyce Biawitz, who was becoming involved with future husband Neil Bogart. "Joyce met Neil on 'Flipside' and she fell in love with him," recalled Aucoin. "Neil said, 'You come and live with me and I'll marry you.' Neil told me, 'Joyce is leaving the company. I want you to buy her out.' And I came up with a figure." (1)
All the while, there had been an idea brewing for a KISS live album, which would be a souvenir of the explosive KISS concert experience. On paper, it seemed like a good idea, but it was also a cost-cutting one. "We really knew that if we could capture the live performance somehow, it could be a good album," said Aucoin. "Plus it was a lot cheaper than being in the studio for a couple of months." (4)
As both the label and KISS seemed to be teetering on the brink of abject financial ruin, "Alive!" was released Sept. 10, 1975, and became the key cog in consummating Aucoin's vision. Produced by Kramer, the album exploded past platinum status and reached a high point of No. 9 on the Billboard 200 album chart, backed by the strength of a hit radio single in the live version of "Rock And Roll All Nite." Perhaps most importantly, "Alive!" was more than just music. It resonated the idea behind KISS with millions of fans: the show, the makeup, the characters, the mystique, the fun -- all housed within a double-vinyl set and gatefold cover, and containing a color booklet and hand-penned letters from the band.
"The band had fashioned an image that would bond them with their fans' desires and dreams. Shrewdly crafting this image was the domain of Bill Aucoin and Howard Marks Advertising," recalled Chris Lendt, an employee with Glickman/Marks Management. (3)
Read the rest here http://www.kissfaq.com/forum09/viewtopic.php?t=49473
Monday, July 5, 2010
This could be the best Bill Aucoin interview ever!
In our poll of "Which Kiss Song Would You Like Added to the US Tour?" 'Creatures of the Night,' which has not been played live since the 1992 Revenge tour, won a whopping 42% of the vote. The new single from Sonic Boom 'Never Enough' came in 2nd with 32% of the vote. 'I Want You' which had been a staple live Kiss song came in 3rd with 22% with 'God of Thunder' in 4th at 19%. Both 'Beth' and 'Got To Choose' tied at 16% coming in at 5th. Thanks to everyone for taking the time to vote in our poll. Hopefully, Paul and Gene will take note and add one or two of our voted selections to the Hottest Show On Earth Tour set to begin July 23, 2010, Frontier Park/Cheyenne Frontier Days in Cheyenne, WY.
CREATURES OF THE NIGHT- 42%
NEVER ENOUGH- 32%
I WANT YOU- 22%
GOD OF THUNDER- 19%
GOT TO CHOOSE- 16%
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Saturday, July 3, 2010
Services for Bill Aucoin will be held in South Florida this weekend. An Aucoin spokeswoman, Carol Kaye, has stated work will begin on a memorial service for Bill in New York City at a future date. Bill was cremated according to a South Florida newspaper.
Editor's Note: Bill Aucoin was the kind of man you wish everyone in his business was like. He was kind, forthcoming, honest and an all around loveable guy who had a great laugh, an interesting story to tell and the balls to accomplish the things he has done. His legacy is as big as his heart. He brought a New York band out of the trenches of Manhatten, with make-up, who no one seemed to care or take seriously, and turn them into the biggest bands in the world- KISS! Kiss was voted the biggest band in the world in 1977 by the Gallup Poll. None of this would have been possible without Bill's expertise, keen eye on business and no-fear dedication. He will be remembered as one of the greatest rock and roll managers that ever set foot in the business. Bill, I thank you for everything. I will miss meeting up with you and our interesting discussions. You were one hell of a guy and will be greatly missed. -J.Frank Hagan/Kiss Mask.
Please check out Bill Aucoin's 13 Kiss Stories-Several editions appear on the same YouTube page. In this editon Bill talks about the Kiss Solo Project of 1978: