No Regrets

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THE MUSIC, THE MAKEUP, THE MADNESS, AND MORE. . . . In December of 1972, a pair of musicians placed an advertisement in the Village Voice: “GUITARIST WANTED WITH FLASH AND ABILITY.” Ace Frehley figured he had both, so he answered the ad. The rest is rock ’n’ roll history.

He was just a boy from the Bronx with stars in his eyes. But when he picked up his guitar and painted stars on his face, Ace Frehley transformed into “The Spaceman”—and helped turn KISS into one of the top-selling bands in the world. Now, for the first time, the beloved rock icon reveals his side of the story with no-holds-barred honesty . . . and no regrets.

For KISS fans, Ace offers a rare behind-the-makeup look at the band’s legendary origins, including the lightning-bolt logo he designed and the outfits his mother sewed. He talks about the unspoken division within the band—he and Peter Criss versus Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons—because the other two didn’t “party every day.” Ace also reveals the inside story behind his turbulent breakup with KISS, their triumphant reunion a decade later, and his smash solo career. Along the way, he shares wild stories about dancing at Studio 54 with “The Bionic Woman,” working as a roadie for Jimi Hendrix, and bar-flying all night with John Belushi. In the end, he comes to terms with his highly publicized descent into alcohol, drugs, and self-destruction—ultimately managing to conquer his demons and come out on top.

This is Ace Frehley.

No makeup.

No apologies.

No regrets.
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About the author

Ace Frehley is a founding member and former lead guitarist for the legendary rock band KISS, which has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide and is ranked among the top-selling rock bands of all time.

Award-winning journalist and bestselling author Joe Layden has written more than thirty books for adults and children, including the critically acclaimed title, The Last Great Fight and the #1 New York Times bestseller The Rock Says. He lives in Saratoga Springs, New York, with his wife, Susan, and their two children.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Nov 1, 2011
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Pages
320
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ISBN
9781451613964
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Composers & Musicians
Biography & Autobiography / Entertainment & Performing Arts
Biography & Autobiography / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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LEGENDARY founding KISS drummer Peter “Catman” Criss has lived an incredible life in music, from the streets of Brooklyn to the social clubs of New York City to the ultimate heights of rock ’n’ roll success and excess.

KISS formed in 1973 and broke new ground with their elaborate makeup, live theatrics, and powerful sound. The band emerged as one of the most iconic hard rock acts in music history. Peter Criss, the Catman, was the heartbeat of the group. From an elevated perch on his pyrotechnic drum riser, he had a unique vantage point on the greatest rock show of all time, with the KISS Army looking back at him night after night.

Peter Criscuola had come a long way from the homemade drum set he pounded on nonstop as a kid growing up in Brooklyn in the fifties. He endured lean years, street violence, and the rollercoaster music scene of the sixties, but he always knew he’d make it. Makeup to Breakup is Peter Criss’s eye-opening journey from the pledge to his ma that he’d one day play Madison Square Garden to doing just that. He conquered the rock world—composing and singing his band’s all-time biggest hit, “Beth” (1976)—but he also faced the perils of stardom and his own mortality, including drug abuse, treatment in 1982, near-suicides, two broken marriages, and a hard-won battle with breast cancer.

Criss opens up with a level of honesty and emotion previously unseen in any musician’s memoir. Makeup to Breakup is the definitive and heartfelt account of one of rock’s most iconic figures, and the importance of faith and family. Rock ’n’ roll has been chronicled many times, but never quite like this.
You wanted the truth, you got the truth—the hottest book in the world!

Fueled by an explosive mix of makeup, costumes, and attitude, KISS burst onto the music scene thirty years ago and has become a rock institution. The band has sold more than eighty million records, has broken every concert attendance record set by Elvis Presley and the Beatles, stands behind the Beatles alone in number of gold records from any group in history, and has spawned more than 2,500 licenses.

There would have been no KISS without Gene Simmons, the outrageous star whose superlong tongue, legendary sexual exploits, and demonic makeup have made him a rock icon. KISS and Make-Up is the wild, shocking, unbelievable story, from the man himself, about how an immigrant boy from Israel studied to be a rabbi, was saved by rock and roll, and became one of the most notorious rock stars the world has ever seen.
Before Gene Simmons there was Chaim Witz, a boy from Haifa, Israel, who had no inkling of the life that lay ahead of him. In vivid detail Gene recounts his childhood growing up in Haifa under the watchful eye of his beloved, strong-willed mother, a concentration camp survivor; his adolescent years attending a Jewish theological center for rabbinical studies in Brooklyn; his love of all things American, including comic books, superheroes, and cowboys; and his early fascination with girls and sex, which prompted him to start a rock band in school after he saw the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show.

KISS and Make-Up is not just the classic story of achieving the American dream through the eyes of an immigrant boy making good, but a juicy, rollicking rock and roll read that takes you along for the ride of your life with KISS, from the 1970s, when they were the biggest band in the world, through the ’80s, when they took off their world-famous war paint, and into the ’90s, when they came back bigger and badder than ever to become the number one touring band in the world.

In his own irreverent, unapologetic voice, Gene talks about the girls (4,600 of them and counting); his tight bond with KISS cofounder Paul Stanley; the struggles he and Paul had with Ace Frehley and Peter Criss and their departures from the group; the new band members and Eric Carr’s untimely death; the enormous love and affection he has for the people who put him there in the first place—the KISS Army and the ever-loyal KISS fans around the world; his love life, including stories about his relationships with Cher and Diana Ross and with Shannon Tweed, Playmate of the Year, mother of his son and daughter, and his companion of eighteen years; and much more.

Full of dozens of photographs, many never-before-seen pictures from Gene’s private collection, KISS and Make-Up is a surprising, intimate look at the man behind the mask. For the first time Gene reveals all the facets of his complex personality—son, rock star, actor, record producer, businessman, ladies’ man, devoted father, and now author.


From the Hardcover edition.
Nothin' to Lose: The Making of KISS (1972-1975) chronicles, for the first time, the crucial formative years of the legendary rock band KISS, culminating with the groundbreaking success of their classic 1975 album Alive! and the smash single "Rock and Roll All Nite," a song that nearly four decades later remains one of rock's most enduring anthems. Drawing on more than two hundred interviews, the book offers a captivating and intimate fly-on-the-wall account of their launch, charting the struggles and ultimate victories that led them to the threshold of superstardom.

Constructed as an oral history, the book includes original interviews with Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Ace Frehley, and Peter Criss, as well as with producers; engineers; management; record company personnel; roadies; club owners; booking agents; concert promoters; costume, stage, and art designers; rock photographers; publicists; and key music journalists.

Many of KISS's musical contemporaries from the time, most of whom shared concert bills with the band on their early tours, also lend their perspective via new interviews; these include Bob Seger, Alice Cooper, and Ted Nugent, as well as members of Aerosmith, Black Sabbath, Rush, Slade, Blue Öyster Cult, Mott the Hoople, Journey, REO Speedwagon, Styx, Raspberries, The James Gang, The New York Dolls, Iggy & the Stooges, The Ramones, Suzi Quatro, Argent, and Uriah Heep, among others.

The result is an indelible and irresistible portrait of a band on the rise and of the music scene they changed forever.

The manager who shepherded Van Halen from obscurity to rock stardom goes behind the scenes to tell the complete, unadulterated story of David Lee Roth, Eddie Van Halen, and the legendary band that changed rock music.

Van Halen’s rise in the 1980s was one of the most thrilling the music world had ever seen—their mythos an epic party, a sweaty, sexy, never-ending rock extravaganza. During this unparalleled run of success, debauchery, and drama, no one was closer to the band than Noel Monk. A man who’d worked with some of rock’s biggest and most notorious names, Monk spent seven years with Van Halen, serving first as their tour manger then as their personal manager until 1985, when both he and David Lee Roth exited as controversy, backstabbing, and disappointment consumed the band.

Throughout Van Halen’s meteoric rise and abrupt halt, this confidant, fixer, friend, and promoter saw it all and lived to tell. Now, for the first time, he shares the most outrageous escapades—from their coming of age to their most shocking behavior on the road; from Eddie’s courtship and high profile wedding to Valerie Bertinelli to the incredible drug use which would ultimately lead to everyone’s demise. Sharing never-before-told stories, Monk paints a compelling portrait of Eddie Van Halen, bringing into focus the unique combination of talent, vision, hardship, and naiveté that shaped one of the greatest rock guitarists of all time—and made him and his brother vulnerable to the trappings and failings of fame.

Illustrated with dozens of rare photographs from Monk’s vaults, Runnin’ with the Devil is manna from rock heaven no Van Halen fan can miss.

The untold story of life on the road with the Grateful Dead, written by an insider who lived it from the early days to today.

Steve Parish was never one to walk the straight-and-narrow, even during his childhood growing up in Flushing Meadow, Queens. Busted as a teenager for selling acid in the summer of 1968, Parish landed in Riker's Island. The experience changed him and after getting out he did his best to stay out of trouble, securing a job moving music equipment at the New York State Pavilion. The first show he worked was a Grateful Dead concert in July of 1969 and Parish was captivated by the music. A life seemingly headed nowhere had suddenly found its calling as he fell in quickly with a band of likeminded misfits who formed the nucleus of what would be the greatest road crew in rock 'n' roll history.

Parish traveled to California where his apprenticeship began. Working for the band for free and learning his craft, Parish got to know Jerry, Bobby, Phil, Billy and Mickey and through the years their relationships forged an unbreakable bond. He became very close with Garcia in particular, acting as his personal roadie and later manager for his solo performances and Garcia Band shows. He was there during times of trouble (like when a pimp held Garcia hostage at gunpoint in a New York hotel room), spending hours by his bedside when Garcia was in a coma in 1986, and performing the duties of best man at his wedding. He was also the last friend to see Garcia alive.

Throughout the Dead's historic run, there were parties of biblical proportion and celebrity run-ins with everybody from Bob Dylan to Frank Sinatra--but there was a dark side to life on the road and tragedy didn't just strike the musicians.

But Home Before Daylight is a story of friendship, of music and redemption. It is a piece of music history, one that reflects the American spirit of adventure and brotherhood. Seen through Steve Parish's eyes and experiences, The Grateful Dead's wild ride has never been so revealing.

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