The Great Gene Simmons on Dick Clark

Say what you will about Gene Simmons and KISS in general. Yes, they are marketing geniuses. Yes, they keep coming back and touring. Yes, all they want to do is make lots of money! But who doesn’t?

But they’ll never forget where they came from. KISS’ first national performance was on 2/19/1974 on “Dick Clark’s In Concert”. Dick Clark helped to catapult KISS into super stardom.

Gene Simmons had this touching tweet earlier today in remembrance of Dick Clark:

Dick Clark passed away yesterday.

A very sad day.

I first met the man backstage, when KISS was about to do his concert TV show in 1974. This was our first year out there, but by then, Dick Clark was already an icon.

He made it a point to come up to our small, cluttered dressing room, stretch out his arm, and say — “If there’s anything you need, just let me know. It’s a pleasure to have you here.”

And he smiled.

And I never forgot the kind gesture.

Since that day, because of him, I have tried to always offer a kind word to young talent starting out in their career.

Dick Clark made the world a better place.

He will be missed.

Gene has delivered on his promise to “offer a kind word to young talent” since then. He had a hand in launching Van Halen, one of my top three favorite bands,  back in 1977! And KISS has featured numerous “unknown” local bands as openers for their shows over the years.

All of this because of the impression Mr. Clark had on KISS.

I present you with KISS’ “Firehouse”!

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