Today is [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Paul Stanley[/lastfm]’s 60th birthday!!

Jack FM Fun Fact #46:  In the early ’90s, our sister sold Paul a shirt at a local Ross store.

Guess even rock stars like to “dress for less.”

With a career spanning nearly 40 years and over 100 million albums sold worldwide, [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Kiss[/lastfm] are one of rock music’s most beloved bands.

Formed in New York City, Kiss first rose to prominence in the mid ’70s on the strength of their elaborate live shows.  Wanting to capitalize on the Kiss concert experience, the band released Alive! in September 1975.  The double-live album provided them the commercial breakthrough they desperately needed.  Alive! sold over 500,000 copies and reached No. 9 on the Billboard Pop Albums chart.  The live version of “Rock and Roll All Nite” peaked at No. 12 on the Hot 100, becoming Kiss’ first Top 40 single.

For the next three years, Kiss dominated the music scene.  They released such platinum-selling albums as Destroyer, Rock and Roll Over and Love Gun, and they scored numerous hits with singles like “Shout It Out Loud,” “Beth,” “Calling Dr. Love” and “Detroit Rock City,” which is Jack’s Song of the Day.  By 1977, Kiss were the most popular band (and brand) in America.

But as a new decade dawned, things began to change.  Drummer [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Peter Criss[/lastfm] and guitarist [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Ace Frehley[/lastfm] had both left the band, and album sales were on the decline.  In September 1983, Kiss decided to shake things up when they went on MTV sans makeup to promote their new album, Lick It Up.  The move proved fruitful.  Lick It Up peaked at No. 24 on the Billboard 200, and it became the band’s first gold album in nearly three years.

Kiss continued to make new music throughout the ’80s, although none of the albums released matched the success of those in their heyday.

In 1996, all four original members (Stanley, Criss, Frehley and [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Gene Simmons[/lastfm]) appeared in full Kiss makeup and costume at the 38th Annual Grammy Awards, fueling speculation of a reunion.  Several months later, the band embarked on a successful international tour, and in ’98 they released Psycho Circus, which debuted at No. 3 on the charts.

Today, Kiss remain a popular concert draw (albeit without Criss and Frehley).  In June, the band will release their 20th studio album, Monster.  Afterwards, Kiss will hit the road for a tour that, according to Simmons, “promises to take technology to the extreme.”

Remember the video for Kiss’ 1984 hit “Heaven’s On Fire?”  Jack FM has just one question, though… if Heaven’s on fire, doesn’t that then make it Hell?!

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