So what's really keeping KISS from performing at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on April 10 in Brooklyn? We got ahold of Paul Stanley, who tells us the heart of the matter is a disagreement over who from the band will be honored.
Paul Stanely on original KISS lineup being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame by GMI Rock News
The Rock Hall is inducting KISS' original four members -- Stanley, bassist Gene Simmons, guitarist Ace Frehley and drummer Peter Criss -- while Stanley and Simmons feel that most if not all of the group's subsequent members should also get the nod:
Paul Stanely on whether Ace and Peter could still perform up to standard by GMI Rock News
"Bringing up the idea of inducting other members other than the original four, which is a very valid argument considering that there are people who played on multi-platinum albums and played for millions of people and were very important for the continuation of the band. The fact that when that was brought up it was shut down as a non-starter, I don't appreciate that...And when I feel that we're being treated unfairly and that the rules clearly are no rules because they don't apply to everybody, and the criteria for how and who gets in is purely based upon a personal like or dislike, I have issues with that."
Stanley points to other Rock Hall bands, such as the Grateful Dead and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, whose entire rosters were inducted, as indicative of the organization's inconsistencies. He surmises that KISS ' situation has to do with a general anti- KISS sentiment within the Rock Hall world:
"That it's 14 years on (of eligibility) and we're getting into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is a clear indication that the people who hide behind the moniker don't like us, and it clearly reached a point where it was so absurd and ludicrous that they caved...It's like them swallowing a teaspoon of medicine they don't want. It's a bitter pill for them to swallow, so they're making it as small as possible...Just 'cause I got inducted doesn't mean this has turned into a love fest."
Stanley says the Rock Hall also wanted KISS' original lineup to perform in makeup during the induction ceremony, but beyond the other members' being slighted he says he's not confident Frehley and Criss, who have each quit the band twice, are capable of playing up to standard:
"Honestly, I have questions about whether or not the original four -- and they wanted the original four guys to play, in makeup...and to roll the dice and possibly impact negatively on what I personally have been involved in building for 40 years, never taking a day off, never leaving the band, is a roll of the dice I'm not sure I wanted to make. I have too much invested in it at this point. So there's been a lot of issues, and perhaps the best way to deal with them is to celebrate the four original guys and to go get our award and to look past differences that will always be there."
Stanley says he and Simmons will definitely attend the ceremony, and he expects Frehley and Criss will be there, too. Stanley will be publishing his autobiography, "Face the Music: A Life Exposed," on April 8 and is planning a book tour to support it.
KISS plays the Hell & Heaven Metal Fest on March 15 in Mexico City, the same day it's Arena Football League team the L.A. KISS begins its season. The group plans to start a full-scale 40th anniversary tour in June.