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Interview

Peter Criss Interview
16/07/2007
Part 2

This is part 2 of the interview, click here to read part 1.

PF I was really hoping to listen to the album before I spoke to you, but it's been a nightmare trying to get a review copy.

PC
Yeah it's not so easy, it's kinda a shame 'cause this downloading crap is really killing us as artists. I don't know if you know that, but it's really wrong to steal my songs - I don't steal nothin' from anybody. It's so wrong to steal my music, I wrote this for my fans not to be stolen. That's a big problem we have right now and I was told Paul got really screwed up before his album came out 'cause some dick-head got it and bootlegged it and it went all over the friggin' place.

PF It only takes one asshole to get hold of it and that's it all round the world.

PC That's right mate, so you know I published it and the people I'm with are really really holding on tight to it because they know some people are just waiting for it. It's terrible to be like this 'cause usually we'd send everything out for people to hear but we can't do that now.

PF I totally agree, if someone came along and took the money I make at work I'd be pissed off, it's the same difference.

PC It's not only for the music, but for movies too, its endless. I think technology is very cool, I've got all Macintosh equipment in my studio, all pro-tools and that stuff. So it's like a double-edge sword I find in this new world of technology, there's the greatness of being able to record and go online and find some very cool things and learn new things, and then there's the other side, the crooks and the nasty's as I call them, the evil people who steal and rip you off and steal peoples accounts, it's not cool. I was not raised like that I don't believe that shit.

PF You mentioned Macs and downloads, do you think the new album will appear on iTunes?

PC I hope to because you know I made it through a b-board (?), so it's major, it's analogue not digital, so I made sure that's not gonna happen. But that's as far as I know, I'm sure it will get there, I'm positive. I hope to god (laughs).

PF You mentioned about the Space Ace track, has Ace heard it yet?

PC Well he couldn't of heard it cause no-ones got this stuff! I mean, there is a four song sampler out but I don't even know who has that, it's only a real few select people who have it. I know I'm on the Ed Trunk show tomorrow, he may have one or two songs but I don't know. I just decided Ace and I when we got back together, we are the closest in the whole family. You know there always seems to be 2 guys closer than the other 2, we were those. We had a great time together me & Ace and when I did the tour without him I really missed him. A lot. And I wouldn't do it again, if I ever did, without him. Four guys started the band and that's the only way I look at the band. I wrote that as we were trapped as we were in a spaceship on the reunion tour, it was a nice vibe but we were. He fascinated me and I had to write some stuff about him and his pain and his blues as I felt the same thing. It goes out into this wild space song and it goes into this really crazy latin jazz solo and it's really cool (laughs). And yeah, I'm hoping when he hears it I do get a call and he does like it.

PF Cool, I hope you do hear from him!

PC I think the fans would dig that, I think it's a cool thing to do.

PF Back onto the swing & rock albums - are you planning any cover versions on those?

PC Well the swing thing is done and it's all kinda Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw, those type of guys, Glenn Miller. I did it with my guitarist and it's turned out great, really great, but I don't know when I'm gonna let it out, probably in a year or so. And the rock thing it's just the music and hard track, the drum tracks are all done, the rhythm tracks are done and the solo tracks are done. So I'll work on it during the summer right after this one is out. You know I'll go down and try to finish it by the winter and maybe get it out next year.

PF Would you have considered re-recording any of your KISS tracks like you did with Beth on Cat #1?

PC You know what, I have thought about it but I haven't, and I do keep still thinking about it so it's kinda become a ping-pong ball in my head. Back and forth, back and forth (laughs).

PF Dirty Livin' or Hooligan maybe? I've read something about a film called 'Frame Of Mind', is that something you've worked on recently?

PC It's a movie, as I mentioned Charles Kipps, the gentleman that wrote lyrics with me on 'It Doesn't Get Better Than This' is the director. He's really like I said, if you worked with Bill Cosby for 30 years you gotta be somebody! He did a movie about the assassination of Kennedy and I play a cop, a retired lieutenant cop who's on the case. In fact I done it last year and they're editing it now, they'll be releasing it soon.

PF Cool, look forward to seeing it.

PC It wasn't a big role, it was actually more a favour for him. I said I'd love to do it, it wasn't a big role but was kinda cool doing it. As far as I know KISS fans will dig it 'cause I'm doing something in it! That's the beautiful fact of KISS fans - there's nothing like them, they're so frigging die-hard! So affectionate and I love it!

PF I've been a fan since '91..

PC (interrupts) Man, late in life!!

PF It didn't take me long to get into all the old stuff, and it was just like wow...

PC I get that from a lot of people, they heard the 80's kinda KISS then they came to see the original band and they were for it and left there with their mouths open! It really dawned on them that this was the real deal, this is really what they do, the real stuff. A lot of those people have now turned over to be fans of the original band, not just 80's fans. I get a lot of email on that, you know, "I loved the band when they had Eric and Bruce but when I saw you guys live that was it, I couldn't take it anymore"!

PF You know the last time they were over here was with you and Ace in 1999 at Wembley. Unbelievably they haven't been back since.

PC Right, I remember, right, we were there only once, it was with Ace. Great show, great audience.

PF It was a great show, but Donigton was my favourite show, fantastic.

PC Ohhh Donington was fantastic! [Peter gets very enthusiastic about Donington, it clearly has some great memories for him]. Coming down in a helicopter in true rock star style! It was like real rock star shit, I felt like we were the Beatles!

PF I was unbelievable, they even had to re-route some airplanes from the local airport!

PC It was very cool man, believe me that was one of my highlights of my career I remember it all the time, I think of that fondly. Actually there's a guy here, I go to the gym and he's a trainer, he was there in a band, he's a bass player of one of the acts that opened for us. And so he freaks out when I go over, he goes "man I ain't never played anything like Donington, 78'000 people", he still freaks out about it. So it vas very cool!

PF Have you got any plans to come back over to the UK?

PC I don't know man, you know it seems with my life lately I'm really taking my time with my decisions and the things I do. If I do something I wanna do it right and I don't wanna make a fool of myself, cause I feel if I can't have the best and be the best then I don't wanna take a chance. When I walked off the stage when we toured with Aerosmith, you couldn't leave with a better band, they're one of my favourite bands in the world and when we played with them that was a great tour. Just missing Ace was the hard part. So I don't know, see what happens if it feels good and people want it enough. I know my guitar player wants to do it, he's constantly calling me and I don't think it would be hard to find a keyboardist and a bass player and play out for a little bit. We were actually thinking about incorporating all that into a Peter Criss day, but we're still working on that.

PF That would be good, what about a KISS expo, would you consider that again? Last time I seen you face to face was about '94 I think at the London expo.

PC Yeah, something like that, I get offers all the time. But we were thinking more along these lines, 'cause we tried a Peter Criss day and it was really successful and it was really a great day and we had a great time, so I would do more Peter Criss days as I call it, than a KISS expo day. Maybe on my day I would bring along some of those people that do the KISS things and let them sell their stuff at my thing.

PF That would be good, maybe inject something new into the KISS expo.

PC Well, everyone would be happy then, nobody gets ripped off or looses money. Everyone goes home and they got what they got - I'd sign everyone's things and play music, it would be very cool.

PF Something like that would go down really well over here.

PC I think so and I think it would go down great over there, absolutely. My wife loves London, my wife would move to England tonight if I wanted to!

PF She was ever so cool to me, she rang me up last week to tell me you couldn't speak to me but she was really helpful.

PC Oh, she's a babe man, she's beautiful, inside and out. But when we went to England she fell in love with it, she was like I could live here tomorrow, maybe would should buy a house here. She really loves England big time.

PF You've gotta let me know if you do decide to come back over here!

PC Definitely!

PF I get the impressions you are really enjoying yourself now?

PC I was always taught by my dad when it stops being fun walk away. It hasn't stopped yet! I'm not really to start playing golf and sit in my wheel chair, I'm not ready for that. I got the heart of a 15 year old. I may have the body of a 60 year old but I go the gym and work out, I don't get high and I have a really good life these days. I god bless every day, and I bless my fans for giving me such a wonderful life.

PF Do you have any final message for the British fans who are missing you and haven't seen you since '99?

PC I hope I come back, cause my wife wants to live there! You know I just love the UK and I hope to go there to do one thing or another, maybe next year... Who knows. This is a crazy business we're in man.

PF Well, there's a shit load of fans over here who email me asking when your albums coming out, so I'm sure you're gonna get a good response from UK fans.

PC Oh, I hope so cause like I said in 2 weeks mate it's out so neither one of us will be able to do anything about that! And I expect to get really hit in the face with pie and I expect to get some good stuff too, I'm used to "either/or" because of Gene and KISS - if I can be in that thing then I can be in anything, so I'm hoping I get better "yays" than "nays" when the UK gets my stuff.

PF I don't think you've got anything to worry about there, just about any KISS album or KISS related album gets a bad review over here, you've just got to ignore that crap. Listen to the album yourself and make your own decisions.

PC Absolutely!

PF Well, thank you very much for calling peter.

PC It was very cool, thank you man. I'm glad my wife got this, it's a very cool thing she did. I've only done you and I think I'm doing one other like this but that's it. All the other stuff I'm doing is like satellite like I said, TV satellite shows. I'm doing loads of phone-ins though, I got phone-ins all day.

PF Any TV shows lined up?

PC I don't know yet, that's another thing that will just trickle in. Maybe Letterman or something - half the bands on my album, it would be hard not to back me (laughs)! Anyway, it was a pleasure to talk to you man.

PF Anything we can do to help just let me know.

PC I truly appreciate that, god bless you man.

PF No problem man, good luck with the album.

PC Bye, and cheers!

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Like I said at the start, Peter was a true gent and was very very entusistic about him new album and life in general. He's a great guy and I hope his album (and the 2 to come) do very well for him. Thanks Peter.

Huge "Thanks Yous" to :-

  • Peter

  • Gigi (for organising and -reorgansing it!)

  • Lori (for setting it up)

  • Dan Bach (for bringing KISSin' UK to the attention of Lori & Gigi)