Stanley, Simmons, Frehley, Criss 057

KISS 057

Look closer for one lyric and eight song titles: “I wanna rock and roll all night and party every day!” (Rock and Roll All Nite by gs,ps); Detroit Rock City (ps); I Was Made for Lovin’ You (ps); Firehouse (ps);  Cold Gin (af); Shout It Out Loud (gs/ps); Love Theme From Kiss (af,gs,ps,pc); Strutter (gs/ps); Beth (pc).

Kiss is an American rock band formed in New York City in January 1973 by Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Peter Criss, and Ace Frehley. Well known for their face paint and stage outfits, the group rose to prominence in the mid-to-late 1970s with its elaborate live performances, featuring fire breathing, blood-spitting, smoking guitars, shooting rockets, levitating drum kits, and pyrotechnics. The band has gone through several lineup changes, with Stanley and Simmons staying. The original and best-known lineup is Stanley (rhythm guitar), Simmons (bass), Frehley (lead guitar), and Criss (drums) (all sing vocals).

The band members took on comic book-style characters: the Starchild (Stanley), the Demon (Simmons), the Spaceman or Space Ace (Frehley), and the Catman (Criss). Both Criss and Frehley departed the with creative differences by 1982.

In 1983, Kiss began performing without makeup and costumes marking the band’s “unmasked” era. They resurged with the Platinum-certified album Lick It Up. Eric Carr, who replaced Criss in 1980, died in 1991 of heart cancer and was replaced by Eric Singer. A wave of Kiss nostalgia in the mid-1990s so the original lineup re-united with its makeup and stage costumes, in 1996. The resulting Alive/Worldwide Tour grossed $143.7 million. It was the band’s most successful tour to date. Criss and Frehley again left the band. They’re replaced by Singer and Tommy Thayer. Who continued with the original stage makeup. Singer the Catman and Thayer the Spaceman. After 45 years, KISS embarked on their final tour, the “End of the Road World Tour,” in 2019.

Kiss has sold more than 75 million records worldwide, including 21 million RIAA-certified albums. Kiss also holds the title as America’s No. 1 Gold record award-winning group of all time, having earned 30 Gold albums. Kiss has 14 Platinum albums, with three albums being multi-Platinum. On April 10, 2014, the four original members of Kiss were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Kiss was ranked by MTV as the 9th “Greatest Metal Band of All Time”, placed 10th on VH1’s “100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock” list, and was ranked third “Best Metal and Hard Rock Live Band of All Time”, Loudwire.

1971–1975: Early years

Wicked Lester was a one album, New York City rock band led by Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley. In 1972 Simmons and Stanley abandoned Wicked Lester for a new music direction.

Late in ‘72, they saw an ad placed by Peter Criss, a drummer from New York City who previously played in the band “Lips.” Simmons and Stanley met Criss in a nightclub where he was playing drums and singing. After Criss joined, the three focused on a much harder style of rock than Wicked Lester. In early January 1973, they added lead guitarist Ace Frehley. A few weeks after Frehley joined, the KISS lineup was solidified.

The Kiss logo

Stanley came up with the name. He, Simmons, and Criss were driving around New York City. Criss said he had been in the band “Lips.” Stanley said something like “What about Kiss?” Frehley created the now-iconic logo, with the “SS” as lightning bolts, when he wrote the new band name over a “Wicked Lester” poster. (Some of Wicked Lester’s artwork included one lightning bolt for the “S” in Lester.) Later, Stanley designed the logo with a Sharpie. He drew the two S’s nonparallel because he did it “by eye”. When asked if he wanted it to be straightened, he said, “It got us this far, let’s leave well enough alone. Our number one rule has always been no rules.”

Modified KISS logo used in Germany, Austria, Israel, and other countries that outlaw Nazi symbols.

The letters happened to look similar to the insignia of the Nazi SS, a symbol that is outlawed in Germany by Section 86a of the German criminal code. Simmons and Stanley, both Jewish, deny any intentional likeness to Nazi symbolism. Since 1979, most of the band’s album covers and merchandise in Germany have used a different logo, in which the letters “SS” look like the letters “ZZ” backwards. It’s also used in Austria, Switzerland, Lithuania, Hungary and Israel to avoid controversy.

The name repeatedly is the subject of rumors pertaining to hidden meanings. Theories are that the name is an acronym for “Knights in Satan’s Service”, “Kinder SS”, or “Kids in Satan’s Service”. Simmons denies all these claims.

credit – Wikipedia

The artwork: 

Each illustration helps a non-profit fund raiser. Contact for donation of the first print..

Digital Print on Archival Matte – Original illustration done in graphite and the following Prisma Colors: Crimson Red for Simmons spitting fake blood; Grass Green for party every day; Indigo Blue for the indignance it took to play KISS on your parent’s console stereo; Spanish Orange for the “tequila” and the “vodka and orange juice” intro to Cold Gin on KISS Alive!; Silver and Black because it is KISS; and True Blue.
Artist: Tobin Bortner of Bastrop, Texas – drawing done in May of 2022 – ©Tobin Signs, LLC/Look Closer Illustrations 
DERIVATIVE Work – photo credits: Paul Stanley’s face ultimateclassicrock_com – PaulStanleyJH; guitar from 987jack_com – stanley; Gene Simmons from nme_com – kiss_paphotos_L280509-2; Ace Frehley from seemebag_com – 71PwhE7JQEL._AC_UL1500_; Peter Criss face from sofa-king-cool-magazine_com – 7bd34b17-610×732.

What you get:
$40 (36.95 + 3.05 tax)
11 x 14 Print Package with Authenticity Sheet
signed and numbered (run of 300)
Domestic Priority Mail $8
 (Free shipping)

Stanley, Simmons, Frehley, Criss 057

50 years of the best Rock and Roll ever.


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