KISS frontman Paul Stanley is unimpressed with the band’s upcoming Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction – because he believes museum executives voted the rockers in “begrudgingly”.
The singer and his bandmates are part of the Class of 2014 being inducted into the Ohio music mecca in April, but he insists he isn’t exactly celebrating – because KISS should already be there.
He tells Classic Rock magazine, “It (induction) was done begrudgingly and because it had become absolutely ludicrous that they were choosing to ignore us.
“At the end of the day, most people don’t realize that the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame was a privately created establishment and that it has a self-appointed board. It’s a perfect case of perception becoming reality. People heard Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and gave it credibility. So whether it deserves the title has to be weighed against who it inducts.
“Was it an honor to be nominated? No. It means a lot to the fans and I understand it because it’s validation for them. So, for that reason, I accept graciously and accept on their behalf, (but) my feelings and my ambivalence about the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame hasn’t changed any. Their attitude is elitist and it doesn’t reflect the public. It reflects a small group who dictate who meets the criteria that they set up as rock ‘n’ roll.
“I’ve always felt the spirit of rock ‘n’ roll meant not only ignoring your critics, but ignoring your peers and going your own way. I think we’ve done that pretty much with few exceptions for 40 years. So that same criteria that kept us out has not gotten us in.”
Stanley adds, “I scratch my head a little and I also take issue with a certain arrogance within that group. Nonetheless, I look at some of the inductees and any club that has Jimmy Page, Eric Clapton and The Who and the Beatles and The (Rolling) Stones is company I don’t mind being in and my feelings have nothing to do with any of them; it purely has to do with a system which I think is tainted, corrupted and distorted.”
And the rocker warns fans not to expect a performance onstage at the induction ceremony, especially one that includes original members Peter Kriss and Ace Frehley.
He states, “Honestly, I have no plans at the moment to do anything, and that includes playing with Ace and Peter or anyone else. My plan at the moment is to go and accept the award. Anything else, we’ll see how it unfolds or unravels.”
Guitarist Frehley has previously expressed an interest in performing at the ceremony, but he refuses to be an add-on to the current KISS line-up.
He said, “You can’t have me and Tommy (Thayer) both in makeup… I don’t have a problem with Tommy and (drummer) Eric (Singer) being there out of makeup if I’m in makeup, because they’re a big part of KISS today. (But) they had nothing to do with the beginning of KISS, or the designs or the costumes or the makeup… This is about the celebration of KISS and how it all began and started, and it should be honoring the four original members.”
Joining KISS as this year’s Hall of Fame inductees are Peter Gabriel, Nirvana, Linda Ronstadt, Daryl Hall & John Oates and Cat Stevens.