Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My introduction to the rock band, Kiss

Back in 1978, I had a friend come over to my house, very excited for me to hear a new album that was out by a new band of clown rockers called, Kiss.

I was an insufferable rock snob about it and refused to let him bring into my house, a band that dressed like clowns. At the time, I was very into bands like Jethro Tull, Led Zepplin, Pink Floyd, Savoy Brown, Fleetwood Mac's Then Play On album (I wasn't nuts about most of their other stuff), T Rex and Tommy Bolin, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, etc. Frank Marino and Mahogany Rush, and others; but mostly I was into serious guitar music. Also acid rock, and what I called "Heavy Metal" back then, but once it turned into a commercial production machine, I stopped listening. I was into a wide variety of music as I've mentioned before, classical, swing, blues, blue grass, reggae, etc. I loved Leon Redbone, for instance and had I known about him, I would have loved Tom Waits. And there are others that break the mold for me in my tastes. And, classical guitar, Segovia and others; blues, BB King and others; all serious players.

So when an acquaintance, younger than me, came over to my house all excited to show me the new Kiss album, I took one look at the clowns on the cover and turned my nose up. In retrospect I am not much a Kiss fan. I am actually, a bit of a fan of Gene Simmons, in a way.
I love his reality show with his family, Simmons Family Jewels. They are entertaining and Gene has some very good business savvy.

But my point in bringing this up is, that once I later, listened to Kiss, I was surprised and realized I shouldn't have turned away the guy that was so excited. It was two forms of music colliding in my driveway. But his wasn't that bad really, I was. I tried to be more open minded in the years following. What I should have done was let him play it for me. I should have been more understanding to someone very excited about something I may not, in the end, have been into. But my comment was, you're not bringing that into my house and not playing it on my Yamaha turntable.

What a jerk.

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