The Real Four Horsemen, 10/26/09
In case you're wondering who these four guys are, they're the men who really make a Kiss show go on. You can forget about the four guys making all that noise and blowing smoke onstage, it's these men that are the real show and we're going to petition McGhee Entertainment for a huge salary raise and four weeks vacation for the real "men behind the masks"...Now for the introductions:
On your left, we have one Mr. Fran Stuart. He's the guy that hands Paul Stanley his guitars restrung, in tune and ready to go, night after night. It looked like he directed a fair amount of traffic backstage, so he's probably the President of something, but no one would tell us what.
Next to him is the man with the most dangerous job in rock: "Metal" Mike Rush and he's the bass tech for Gene Simmons. He's the guy that takes care of Gene's basses and bass rig. He also wipes the blood and white corn squeezins (used to shoot fire out of his head) off of Gene's instruments. Word is, he gives it as good as he gets it and for that, he has all the 'Elk respect we can give.
Coming in at #3 from the left is the "old soul" of the group, Mr. Jim Survis. He takes care of Ace's replacement, Tommy Thayer and put the fluorescent green arrows on the stage so Tommy will know where to stand when his guitar shoots sparks out of the headstock. He's also teched for a little- know guitarist in a little- known band called Aerosmith. Being a badass obviously pays dividends and it looks like when Kiss wanted the best tech in the land to take care of Tommy, they called Jim. Oh, in this picture, he was tired and hungry, but obliged us anyway- that's a class guy in our book!
Finally, we have Mr. Paul Bassett, drum tech for the mighty Eric Singer. All we have to say about him is, he's as cool as the other side of the pillow and if I could play drums and hit the lottery, I'd pay him to sit in my garage and tell me what I was doing wrong. That in itself would keep him employed for a long time.
These guys were extremely cool to Lee and I and went out of their way to accommodate us. They answered our questions and passed on a beer or two. If we ever see them again, there will be 'Elk T- shirts for them all- thanks Guys!