Eddie Trunk, the longtime music personality, syndicated radio host and host of VH1 Classic's That Metal Show, launched a lengthy diatribe against his favorite band, KISS, in the blog section of his website on 7/27/12.
"It is inevitable whenever KISS is active I am HAMMERED by KISS fans asking me for my opinions, will I see the show, will I play the music, etc. eMail, Twitter, Radio, it is endless really. No matter how I answer (always honestly) to any given question, most fans interpret it, spin it, or distort it. I'm used to this. It comes with being in several ends of media and the fanatical fan. Most bands are also aware of how fans can spin things, take them out of context to appear in their good graces.
Over the last 10 years it's shocking to me that KISS hasn't figured this out. The most hardcore fan base in the world, and apparently they believe everything their fans say and post, much like those same fans buy everything the band says and sells. This is the best album, biggest show, etc. Same hype line every single cycle. This is the same segment of the fan base that will buy a $4000 book or $8000 guitar or $5000 meet & greet. If that's your trip more power to you. For me it was always about KISS' MUSIC, what a concept!
To that end I have played KISS on the radio for 30 years. EVERY lineup, EVERY era since 1982. Even starting a yearly all KISS special. I fought for KISS for decades when there was NOTHING more uncool! ALL ERAS AND LINEUPS, NOT JUST THE ORIGINALS, the facts are there, pull the history and playlists.
The premise I am friends with Ace and that drives any issues I have with KISS is utter bullshit! Why would I play the band and albums all the time he had nothing to do with? Why would I dedicate my book to ERIC CARR? Just dumb, but it serves the purpose of the fans that want to stir the pot and look good to the band. I am the ONLY one in the bands home market of NYC that ever plays them besides "R&R All Night". I even played the new single just a couple weeks ago. How is that someone that only cares about the original band? Laughable if you really look at the FACTS. Here is another FACT, the ONLY thing I have ever said about the current KISS is I have no interest in seeing them because I don't like seeing Tommy & Eric as personas others created. KISS can spin it any way they want, to me it is simply impersonation and looks wrong, feels wrong, and robs those guys of a chance to create and express themselves. That's how I feel as a fan, it's my opinion, and I stand by it. And guess what? TONS of others, both fans, and MAJOR bands feel the same exact way! I have endless proof of this, but few will say it on the record. Last I knew, a guy like Gene has NO PROBLEM telling anyone how he feels about ANYTHING. I would think he could respect an OPINION! I never once said Tommy & Eric should not be in the band or anything negative about them as people or players.
But you see that doesn't make for exciting tweets or posts. Of the 99% positive I have said and done in support of KISS, only the 1% I don't like is blown up and discussed by band and certain fans it seems. KISS wants blind worship, all or nothing I guess. I have made my name being objective, honest and respecting those that agree and disagree. Having a dialogue is what my radio and TV shows have been built on. Debate and discussion is encouraged and most bands are not so hyper sensitive that they won't have that conversation.
I never know where I stand with KISS because I never know who got in their ear, what they heard or read. Last time I spoke to Paul Stanley was around 4 years ago when he recorded a radio ID just a couple nights before that was complimentary and I didn't ask for. I went to see his art thinking all was cool and he gave me major attitude. What changed in 48 hours? To this day I'll never know. The last thing I said to him was to please sit down for 5 minutes and explain to me what the issues are. Let's cut the he said/she said BS and communicate! He said we would, walked out the back door, and that was it. In the years since I have watched Paul and KISS do countless interviews on outlets that NEVER play their music and really just know bombs, fire, makeup (maybe that's how they like it). I've seen them do countless radio shows that do nothing but mock them, question their talent, call them a joke when they are not standing in front of them. KISS fans have asked repeatedly for the band to be on That Metal Show. The door was always open, but the awful Eddie Trunk was on the other side, so no go. The guy that defends the band constantly on so many levels, that has the R&R Hall director in studio screaming at him about the exclusion of KISS, the guy that actually plays the bands music, but I am the problem because I have an OPINION about the current image of the band. NOT the people in it, but the IMAGE of who they portray! The decades of positive support never acknowledged, but one think I don't like makes me an enemy? Pretty sad.
The last straw for me took place just about a week ago. I was approached by the people that run the KISS golf course in Vegas. THEY APPROACHED ME, to do an appearance there. I explained I would be open to it, we could do some KISS trivia, have a good time and celebrate the band we all love and grew up with. And that's important to note by the way! I NEVER stopped being a KISS fan and supporter through all of this! No matter what band you love everyone has something at some point in their history they weren't a big fan of, so what's the big deal right?? Before a deal could be reached for the appearance I told the Golf people to please check with KISS if it was okay with them. Didn't want to book flights, rooms, make a deal, then find out there would be an issue. A few days later she came back to my rep and said all was good and we moved forward on all arrangements. After everything was set KISS Golf called my rep and said the band heard about it and went crazy and told them I was not to do this event. AFTER all plans were final and I was told it was okay, KISS themselves decide to block it from happening, costing me money in the process ('m sure that can at least touch a nerve with Gene!). Again, couldn't make it up, have the proof.
For so long I have taken the high road on so many things. Experiences I could share would blow your mind, but you get the idea. I need this shit? I need to keep fighting for this band and their music? Lars from METALLICA stood on stage at his festival and thanked me to the crowd for my support over the years just last month. Joe Perry just welcomed me to an AEROSMITH show and tweeted his appreciation. Two bands by the way I have said many critical things about over the years! Now all that is super nice, but not what I seek. But I sure as hell don't need this petty shit from a band I have maybe more consistently supported than any other! If I wanted to be a "troublemaker" as Paul once called me I would tweet and post the countless emails I get from fans bitching about the prices of meet & greets, books or why the band has such little energy on stage and Paul's voice is shot. I don't know, maybe read the press from 10 years ago when he was worried about staying at the party too long with KISS? Maybe it's time he replaces himself? But if you are bitching and keep buying you only have yourself to blame.\
The ship has sailed for me for KISS. Support is a two way street and I'm tired of STILL fighting for the band and being treated like a problem. I was content to just opt to not go to the shows and let people make their own minds up. If you love it great, if you don't then do not go. Its really pretty simple and I respect both positions, always have, but I have zero interest in continuing to help a band that sees me as such a problem. KISS was and always will be a huge part of my life. They were my first favorite band in hard rock. Some of the members past, present, deceased are/were friends. But the whole thing is just way too stupid now being treated like a disobedient child. To those that drink the Kool Aid and question nothing they will all make something up and spin this a certain way. Screaming about Ace & Peter on drugs (both have been sober more than 5 years, I know that hurts the master plan, but enough) and making it about me and the original lineup, which it is not and never was about.
This is the last time I'll address this issue for now, but the truth needed to be told. Please direct your KISS questions, comments, and requests for new music elsewhere. I've prided myself on being honest with my audience so there you have it. I truly respect and appreciate each and every one of you regardless if you agree or disagree on my feelings on current KISS. After all I always thought it was okay to have an opinion and dialogue.So for the record that's mine. Enjoy the band and the shows if you are going, but please keep me out of it as you now know exactly what's what on my end, something to this day I could never figure out from KISS themselves."
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