Rock Talk with Mitch Lafon – Podcast Review

Something new on 2Loud2OldMusic.com this week will be podcast reviews.  I have been digging through a ton of music podcasts over the last few months and there are several that I have grown to love and they are now a weekly event that I listen to on the drive home from work.

First up for review is ‘Rock Talk with Mitch Lafon’ on Westwood One.  So, who is Mitch Lafon?  Mitch is a very well respected music journalists out of Canada and has been in the music scene for over 20 years.  To put it simply, he knows the rock scene.  He lives and breathes it on a daily basis.  One thing I found out is his first interview was at 11 years old back in 1980 when he interviewed Gene Simmons of Kiss.

Mitch interviews the cream of the crop in the rock world and the interviews are always compelling and full of cool information about the artist and what is going on with their music or even their lives.  At times the interviews seem like two friends sitting back and having a conversation.  Mitch has interviewed a lot of these artist before over the years and some are actually personal friends of his.  You don’t get the normal stale, boring interview.  Mitch has a way of making the artist feel relaxed and willing to talk.  Hell, most of the time the artist are coming to Mitch for the interview not the other way around.  That right there tells me a lot about his credibility.

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Kiss – “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” (The 45 Single)

Disco era Kiss!  Does it get any better than that??  Well, yes it actually does.  Nonetheless, it was still Kiss and still awesome.  I was out at my favorite little record spot and came across a 7″ single of Kiss and of course I had to have it.  It was the 1979 single off the Dynasty album called “I Was Made For Lovin’ You”.

The single was only the band’s second Gold single and it went on to sell over a 1 million copies so needless to say, it was a hit.  Which proved Gene and Paul correct that during the Disco era, anyone could write a disco song.  Speaking of writing, this was the first time Kiss co-wrote a song with Desmond Child and it wouldn’t be the last.  It was also Desmond’s first hit he ever had.  The song was also written by Paul Stanley and Vini Poncia who played piano on the song and did backing vocals.

The really isn’t much to talk about in regards to the song.  Think disco and you know what the song sounds like.  You can get up and dance to it and sing along to the catchy, pop chorus.  It is simple.  One thing I guess I can talk about is that wikipedia has the 7″ single listed at 4:01, but my version has it at 3:57 which might not seem like a lot, but that is a big difference.  The song is already cut down from the album version which was at 4:30.  Not sure if I have a different version or wikipedia is just wrong.

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Gene Simmons the Vault Experience or the Kiss: Kissteria Box Set – Which would you choose??

Let’s have a little fun.  If you had $2,000, which would you buy…the Gene Simmons Vault Experience or the Kiss Kissteria Road Cast Box Set?  Yes, I know there is better things you can do with your money, but this is for fun.  I am not planning to get either of these…at least not right now.  Now before you answer the question, what is included with each?

The Gene Simmons Vault Experience

What is the Gene Simmons Vault Experience?  It is just that…an experience.  For your $2,000 you get to attend an all day Vault Experience which includes the following:

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  • Gene Meet & Greet: You and a guest will spend one-on-one time with Gene in your area (maybe 5 minutes based on what I have read, but he will sign anything you want including the top of the Vault and anything inside)
  • “Songs & Stories” Playback Session and Q&A: You and a guest will attend an intimate Vault preview
  • Gene photo/video/autograph session
  • Gene hand delivers your limited-edition personalized Vault (which has a special section with bonus items individually selected by Gene that are included that are unique to your vault – some guy got Kiss Kondoms)
  • Vault Pre-Pack: Signed Golden Ticket, T-Shirt, Download Card (with “Are You Ready”), And laminate

Let’s just let Gene explain:

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Kiss – “Tears Are Falling” (The 45 Single)

 

I was out and about at one of my favorite local record stores and came across this old 45 Single from Kiss. It was for the song “Tears Are Falling” off their 1985 album ‘Asylum.  By 1985, Kiss was  fully ensconced into the 80’s Hair Metal scene.  Starting with their previous album, ‘Animalize’, the band’s sound shifted from the heavier albums like ‘Creatures of the Night’ and ‘Lick It Up’, to more of the Glam Rock sound to keep up with the music of the time.  That meant power ballads.  “Tears Are Falling” fit that mold quite nicely.

“Tears Are Falling” was released as a single in 1985 and made it to #20 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks, just not technically not a Top 40 hit since it only reached #51 on the Billboard Hot 100.  The song did have better success on MTV where it was in frequent rotation on the station.

The song was written by Paul Stanley and one of the few times we ever get a true Stanley Only song.  The next we got was not until his solo album in 2006.  That bit of tidbit surprised me, but the internet can’t be wrong…can it??  The song was recorded at the legendary Electric Lady Studios which is Jimi Hendrix’s old studio and produced by Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley.  Interesting enough, Gene didn’t play bass on the song, it was played by Paul.

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My Sunday Song – “Detroit Rock City” by Kiss

For My Sunday Song #76, I bring you the Kiss classic, “Detroit Rock City”.  The song was the opening track to the album ‘Destoyer’ and it was also the third single in support of the album.  However, the song never charted due to the little B-Side on the back called “Beth” (which is a story for another time).

A fan favorite and still played at shows today, “Detroit Rock City has become one of the band’s most recognizable songs behind “Rock & Roll All Nite”.  The song was so popular, there was even a movie made called “Detroit Rock City” that Kiss actually appeared in.

The song does mention Detroit, but is really about a young fan that is killed why he was on his way to a Kiss concert.  The story is based of an actual event that occurred outside a Kiss concert in Charlotte where a fan was hit by a car and killed outside the arena.  Knowing it is based a real life event adds a little extra to the impact of the song.

The song opens with a radio broadcast (the broadcaster is played by Gene Simmons) of the death of a driver killed in a car crash then seques in to the young man getting into his car and heading to the concert playing Kiss’s “Rock & Roll All Nite” on the radio.  During the song, you go back and forth between the song and hearing the car drive down the road getting closer to the show.  The song ends with the car crashing and immediately goes into the next song on the album “King of the Night Time World”.

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Tuesday’s Memes – Gene Simmons

Welcome to the first of the 2018 Tuesday’s Memes.  Let’s get started with poking fun at someone who really deserves to be poked fun of a little for running his mouth so much lately.  This week we honor (or roast, take your pick) Gene Simmons from the band Kiss.  Since Kiss isn’t doing anything new lately, Gene is trying desperately to stay relevant and it isn’t working very well.

I hope you enjoy and get a laugh or two…

Alright, might as well jump right in…

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“My First Time” with Kiss – ‘Lick It Up’

We are now to the end of the “My First Time” series. I ended up skipping it in November as their were too many new albums to review, plus I just wasn’t in the mood,  That got me thinking.  I don’t like being tied down to a specific album or theme.  I want to review albums whenever I am in the mood to do it.  Doing this series, limited me a little so I figured I would do one more and then just start reviewing any album, any time…no theme.

I figured if it was going to be my last, it needed to be something special.  For me, that means Kiss!!  The “My First Time” series is about the FIRST album I bought from a band.  Believe it or not, that album is ‘Lick It Up’ by Kiss.  A couple of my brothers were huge fans and had all their albums, but I had never bought one.  That changed with the excitement of this release.

What was all the excitement about this album?  Well, I am glad you asked.  Kiss sales had been in the decline.  Even with the stellar album ‘Creatures of the Night’ (one of their best), Kiss needed to do something to shake things up.  So they did just that.  They removed the make-up.  It was such a big deal, MTV held a special for the band to reveal themselves without make-up.  They also introduced the video for their first single, “Lick It Up”.  Here is the MTV special reveal…

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Tuesday’s Memes – HEAVY METAL

No artists this week.  We are tackling a whole genre of music called Heavy Metal.  Maybe you have heard of it…I hope so.  If not, these won’t be funny at all to you.  Everyone likes it hard some times and with music, I do too.  So let’s have some fun with Heavy Metal.  I hope you enjoy!!

Hey Gene…trademark this!!

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Scooby-Doo and KISS – Rock and Roll Mystery – Movie Review

For some reason, my youngest daughter has been fascinated by the band KISS.  I am sure it stems from all the KISS albums and videos I have. When she was younger, we would joke that her tongue was like Gene Simmons, so the Demon became the character she liked best.

My youngest also loves Scooby-Doo.  So when KISS and Scooby-Doo joined forces for a video, naturally she had to have it.  And being the great father and Kisss fan that I am, I made sure she had it.

Instead of me trying to be creative and explain this hard to explain movie, I will let the editors of Amazon.com do it for me…

Get ready to Rock! Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Inc. Gang team up with the one and only KISS in this all-new, out-of-this-world adventure! We join the Gang at Kiss World – the all-things-Kiss theme park, as they investigate a series of strange hauntings. With help from Kiss, they discover that the Crimson Witch has returned to summon The Destroyer from the alternate dimension of Kissteria! The evil duos ghastly plan, to destroy the earth! Can the Gang’s cunning and Kiss’s power of rock save the day?! Tune in to this Rock and Roll Mystery for some thunderous, heavy FUN!

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“Nothin’ To Lose: The Making of Kiss 1972-1975” by Ken Sharp, Gene Simmons & Paul Stanley – Book Review

I try to read at least one book a month and for July it was “Nothin’ to Lose: The Making of KISS 1972-1975” by Ken Sharp, Gene Simmons & Paul Stanley.  All thanks to a Amazon running a $2.99 special for the Kindle.  That is exactly how I read Paul Stanley’s autobiography for only $2.99.

As a KISS fan this was a really a no brainer to read.  I knew a bunch of the stories, but not everything.  As a side note, I found a way to enhance the experience of reading this book.  If you have Kissology DVD series, you can watch the shows they are talking about in the book.  You definitely need the 1st series which covers 1974-1977.  You also need Volume 3 which contains the much talked about Queens, NY Coventry Show from December, 1973 the band’s first ever concert filmed in make up in its entirety.  When you add this to your reading, it truly enhances the whole experience.

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