Original KISS guitarist Ace Frehley spoke to "Shredd And Ragan In The Morning" on Buffalo, New York's 97 Rock radio station about his ongoing war of words with his former bandmates Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons.
Late last month, Ace threatened to "tell some dirt that nobody knows about Paul and Gene" if the KISS leaders did not apologize for the disparaging remarks they made during an appearance on "The Howard Stern Show". A week later, he returned to SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk" to say that he "got a five-second phone call" from Stanley "which said, 'Fuck you, Ace. I'm not gonna apologize,' and hung up."
During his appearance on today's (Thursday, April 27) episode of "Shredd And Ragan In The Morning", Ace once again confirmed that Paul had called him, saying (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Yeah, he cursed me out. I don't know. I guess he was having a rough day. That didn't sit well with him. But he's hot and cold anyway — sometimes he's really sweet; sometimes he can be not so sweet. I just let it roll off my back."
Ace continued: "I remember in the first interview on Eddie Trunk, I said I was gonna reveal some dirt. But after speaking to a couple of close friends, and speaking to Eddie as well, they said I should really take the high road. And that's what I did the second interview."
Despite the bad blood between him and his former bandmates, Frehley appeared to still look back fondly on his time with KISS.
"We're all rock and roll brothers," he said. "And we still have a love for each other, even though I'm not working for them anymore."
When Ace last talked to "Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk", he said he was still open to playing with KISS at the band's final shows in New York City in early December. "Money motivates me, just like it motivates them, but I don't put money before God," he explained. "If I got a quarter of a million dollars a night, and I can make half a million dollars for playing three or four songs, five songs, I'd take the money. [I'd] buy a Ferrari… buy a Maserati. [Laughs] I don't really wanna play with those guys ever again after what they've done, but money can change my mind."
Frehley continued: "Look, I'm a capitalist. I grew up in America. But I'd never put money before people's feelings. I like money as much as the next guy does, but money isn't my God, like it is theirs. They're all atheists. Whatever they can do or say, whether it's true or false, as long as it makes them the most amount of money, they're gonna do [it]."
Ace also addressed the issue of whether he would perform with KISS at the band's final concerts while wearing his trademark "Spaceman" makeup — the same makeup his replacement Tommy Thayer has been sporting for more than two decades. "Sure. For a quarter of a million dollars," he said, explaining that "I'm a good-looking guy. I don't need the makeup."
When Trunk pressed Ace about what he thinks the odds are of him playing with KISS at the final concerts in New York, Frehley said: "It all depends on money. If I get a formal invitation with a check, I'll be there. But they've gotta have deep pockets… If they don't wanna pay me, I won't be there, ladies and gentleman."
Ace also once again confirmed that he has never received a formal invitation to join his former bandmates at their last-ever shows. "Absolutely not," he said. "From what I understand, the shows are sold out. The only reason they sold out is they made innuendos that me and Peter were gonna be there, [that] they invited us. I wasn't invited. They lie all the time. Haven't they said, 'We're inviting Ace and Peter to come up and play?' Or at least me? Multiple times. So, people bought the tickets. But I haven't been given a formal invitation or given an offer monetarily. And I'm probably not gonna get one now after this interview. And guess what: I don't give a shit."
The initial comment from Stanley that caused Frehley to issue his ultimatum came nearly two months ago during KISS's appearance on "The Howard Stern Show". On that day, radio host Howard Stern asked Stanley why he and Simmons didn't perform with Frehley and Criss at the Rock Hall induction. Stanley responded: "[The Rock Hall organizers] were demanding, quite honestly, that we play with the two original guys, Peter and Ace, and at this point, that would be demeaning to the [current KISS] band, and also would give some people confusion. 'Cause if you saw people on stage who looked like KISS but sounded like that, maybe we should be called PISS."
Simmons concurred, saying: "We've been all over the world, through decades, with this present lineup. It bears noting I've never seen a single banner or sign that mentions any other lineup. When Tommy takes a solo, 'Tommy! Tommy!' That's me backstage going, 'Tommy!' When Eric takes a solo, 'Eric! Eric!' They're pumping their fists. It's legitimate. Nobody is in KISS and doing it by the numbers."
The last leg of KISS's North American tour will kick off in October and culminate in the MSG concerts on December 1 and December 2.
Ace Frehley photo credit: Jay Gilbert