Kiss Prequel, 10/26/09
Going to a Kiss show is like going to the world's largest family reunion, if you're a Kiss fan. You see many of the same type of people: The drunk cousin you see once a year, stumbling around on New Year's Eve wearing your wife's lampshade as a hat and that neurotic sister-in -law that just has to tell you how special her seven year- old is. You know, the one that excels in everything. It's always the same there as it is at a Kiss concert. The hours leading up to the show are every bit as interesting as your once- a- year family barbecue but unlike the barbecue, you don't get sauce on your pants. There are stories being swapped, alfa- males posturing, females preening and rock music blaring with spirits being passed between brethren united under the Kiss Army banner.
Photo 1: The cat holding the Ibanez PS-10 in the middle is Randy Crump. Randy is a professional photographer and full- time member of the Kiss Army. Randy and his posse were on their way to the Platinum staging area to meet with Kiss when this photo was taken. Randy told me it's hard being a Pimp, but someone's gotta do it.
Photo 2: In these hard economic times, word has been passed down from the top: To gain entrance to the backstage area, everyone that wants to meet the band has to pony up a "Grand", even if you're Paul Stanley. What has this world come to?
Photo 3: This photo, of the relatives of Paul and Gene is rare indeed. You see, the band retains their nephews, "Maul" Stanley and "Lean" Simmons to dress up like them, incite the crowd before entering the arena and to be decoys after the show. This tactic is nothing new and one that has been employed by Kiss since 1975. Once, in Largo, Maryland, Maul and Lean filled in for their uncles on the Dynasty tour and the frezied crowd was none the wiser. Talk about a case of non- mistaken identity....
Photo 4: In this photo, you see the illegitimate love- child of the Catman. As the story was conveyed to me, Peter Criss was down in the "Dirty South", doing a drum clinic in 1985 when he met up with a sultry night club singer from Dunwoody. In an attempt to woo this beautiful Southern Belle, Peter took her out to an elite restaurant. A few drinks were ordered, followed by a little "dancing in the moonlight" if you know what I mean. Years later, after the daughter found out who her famous Dad was, she took him to court to gain not only her respectability, but her legitimacy. The judge took one look at her and filed a motion for the plaintiff.
By the looks of her, there's no denying it- feline blood runs through her veins....
Photo 5: This is none other than Juan Fidel Leppe and he is the General in charge of the Ecuadorian chapter of the Kiss Army. In Ecuador, they take their Kisstory very seriously; So seriously, a law was passed by the Ecuadorian Parliament that decrees all mothers shall name their first- born child after a masked man of Kiss. So, if you ever meet a
beautiful Senorita by the name of Paul, don't be alarmed; She's not a cross dresser, she's just the first born child of an Ecuadorian mother. After all, laws are laws.....
Photo 6: Entering the hallowed grounds of a Kiss concert. Sorry if the picture is fuzzy, I still get excited..
Photo 7: This is Doc Magee. For those of you that don't know who he is, Doc is the manager to the stars. In his storied career, he has managed the likes of Motley Crue, Bon Jovi and of course, Kiss. Considering the 'Elk will be on tour shortly, I decided to solicit his services. I proceeded to tell Doc of the new material we had, the entourage, the scores of beautiful women and our access to lavish accommodations. Doc, seemingly excited nodded his head in agreement and at that moment, I knew I had him. I was excited and as was Ray. Then, the conversation went from a casual, but exuberant chat to straight, hard- lined negotiations and it quickly became apparent to me that I was outmatched. The Doc, who is a tough negotiator and seasoned veteran went on to explaine that he has it pretty good with Kiss and that he was quite satisfied. He also went on to tell us that it would take a "serious" offer to lure him away. Hearing this, I knew I had to act fast and decided to pull out all the stops to entice him. I told him right there in front of Ray and God that he would have his very own 1987 conversion van in which to ride to the shows (him driving the van of course), 3 tye- dyed Grinningelk tour T-shirts free of charge, a bird call Ray and I got from a box of Cracker Jacks, a pick once owned by "Fast" Eddie Clarke of Fastway (with provenance from the guitar tech of Saxon) and $183.00 cash money per week. (smart, right- the cash? It sets- up the whole non- reportable income scenario). Stunned and obviously overwhelmed by our generosity, the offer rendered Doc speechless and after he had gathered himself, he collected up our business card. Then, he told us he would be in touch this coming week so you can imagine how excited Ray and I are. In anticipation of Doc accepting our offer, we've had the van adorned with the Doc's name and likeness. You see 'Elks, let this be a lesson to you; When you really want something, come in strong or don't come in at all.