KISS's PAUL STANLEY Says He 'Misspoke' When He Called 'Destroyer' Producer BOB EZRIN A 'Functioning Addict'

July 3, 2021

Paul Stanley says that he "misspoke" when he said Bob Ezrin was a "functioning addict" during the making of KISS's "Destroyer" album.

The KISS guitarist/vocalist made the disparaging remark in the new A&E documentary "Biography: KISStory", which chronicles the band's five decades in the business and features archival and, in some cases, previously unreleased footage, along with extensive new interviews with Stanley and bassist Gene Simmons and commentary from other bandmembers, producers and admirers.

On Friday (July 2),Stanley took to his Twitter to write: "Words Hurt. In our documentary I spoke of my dear friend Bob Ezrin as a 'functioning addict' while we made Destroyer. The impact of that word was lost on me. Although not intended, the hurt & stigma attached is far reaching. That statement was inaccurate, not true and I misspoke."

Ezrin produced three KISS albums — "Destroyer" (1976),"Music From 'The Elder'" (1981) and "Revenge" (1992) — and helped the band craft its commercial breakthrough. Although "Alive!" was KISS's first gold record, "Destroyer" was its first to sell a million copies in less than a year. It's since been certified double-platinum.

In a 2016 interview with Rolling Stone, Stanley stated about the "Destroyer" recording experience: "It really was a glorious, exciting time, because Bob was the camp counselor, the camp director. He wore a whistle around his neck and called us campers. You have to understand that at this point we saw ourselves very much as 'rock stars' and didn't take crap from anybody. But we buttoned our lips and bit our tongues with Bob. He was the voice of experience, and clearly knew more than we did. So it was boot camp of sorts."

Paul went on to say that he looked at Ezrin "as a mentor, and he really raised the bar for us in terms of lyrics. Up until then, quite honestly, and putting this as simply as possible, we were writing 'fuck me, suck me' songs," he explained. "Bob wanted none of that. He wanted more of an experience of the psyche, and the mentality of youth and what we were about, as opposed to the physicality of it. He would nix lyrics, and send us back."

The four-hour "KISStory" premiered late last month. It includes comments by musicians Dave Grohl and Tom Morello, manager Doc McGhee, Ezrin and others. Stanley recently said that original members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss's sound bites during the documentary come from archival interviews because both wanted to be paid and have "final editing rights" in order to be part of the project. In addition, Criss would not grant permission for the documentary makers to use the song "Beth" — which he co-wrote — in the film.

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