KISS bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons sticks by his claim that “Rock Is Dead“, but asserts that his band currently makes “more than ever”.
Celebrity news site X17 Online recently caught up with Gene and his KISS bandmate, guitarist/vocalist Paul Stanley, at the airport prior to heading to Europe for their summer 2022 “End Of The Road” tour.
Gene was asked to once again clarify his “rock is dead” comments, to which he replied (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “Rock is dead. Because as soon as fans were able to download and fileshare for free, new bands didn’t have a chance to make a living. And that breaks my heart, because there’s so many great talented young musicians and writers who are never gonna get the chance that I got. Anything that is free or a penny when it should cost a dollar or more soon is worthless.
“From 1958 until 1988, we had Elvis [Presley], THE BEATLES, all the great blues men, Madonna; in disco, you had the great Motown stuff which is unequaled; you had heavy bands — METALLICA and IRON MAIDEN and all that stuff — U2, Prince, David Bowie, all that,” he continued. “From 1988 until today is more than 30 years. Who are the new BEATLES? Who are they?
“Right around ’88, Napster and all the rest of that showed people how to get music for nothing and you took away the value,” Gene added. “Then musicians can’t earn a living. Not the old ones who are big and fat and rich. I understand. But the baby bands, it breaks my heart. They’re not gonna get the chance. Rock is dead.”
When asked if the current state of music consumption has affected his KISS royalties at all, Simmons replied: “No. We make more than ever before. So it’s not about me. It’s about the baby bands.”
KISS launched its farewell “End Of The Road” tour back in January 2019 but was forced to put it on hold last year due to the global pandemic.
The “End Of The Road” trek was initially set to wrap up on July 17, 2021 in New York City but is now expected to last through to early 2023.