PAUL STANLEY: 'I Was Convinced I Could Play The Guitar When I Had No Knowledge Of The Guitar'

July 4, 2024

In the latest episode of Gibson TV 's "The Collection", host Mark Agnesi is in the KISS warehouse to explore Paul Stanley's impressive guitar collection.

KISS is an American icon. They have sold over 100 million records, earning them more gold records than any other band in history, and Stanley was at the front and center for all of it. He has toured the globe for nearly 50 years with one of the most influential rock bands in the world, so you know he has a guitar collection that is made for lovin'.

Join Agnesi at the KISS warehouse to get a personal tour of his impressive collection of guitars from the Starchild himself in this new episode of Gibson TV's "The Collection".

Watch as Stanley shares some of his favorite Gibson Les Paul guitars, shows us what he regards as his "best-sounding guitar" in the form of his Korina Flying V and reflects on the importance of being a great rhythm guitar player, a skill he honed over decades of performing. Hear the story of his first SG Les Paul, the heartbreak of losing vintage Burst Les Pauls, the story of his mirrored Ibanez PS-10 signature guitar, and see his newest addition, a Custom Shop 1961 Les Paul SG Standard.

Asked when guitars first showed up on his radar and when he went, "Oh, I wanna do that," Paul replied: "When I was a little kid and I saw Eddie Cochran on TV. For some reason, he seemed like an even more dangerous Elvis [Presley]. There was something about him that was rogue and seemed ruthless, a great attitude. 'Summertime Blues' and 'C'mon Everybody'. So that was really the start of my introduction to guitar, although I grew up in a family with a lot of folk music and bluegrass and opera and classical music and all. But I was convinced I could play the guitar when I had no knowledge of the guitar, just because there was some sort of connection. Guitar really is the instrument of the blues, which gave birth to rock and roll."

Asked when he finally got his hands on a guitar, Paul said: "Oh my gosh. I kept telling my parents. My 13th birthday was coming up, and I kept saying, 'I really want a guitar, an electric guitar.' Right around my birthday, my mom said, 'Look under your bed,' and I looked under the bed and my heart began to break 'cause I saw this big cardboard case. And I pulled it out and opened it up, and it was a used nylon-string guitar. I was shattered 'cause you can't play rock and roll on this. And I closed it and pushed it back under the bed. A couple of months later, I said, 'Let me let me give that a go.' So that was really the start, was a nylon-string guitar, and I was probably 13 years old… I took to it really quickly. I took a few lessons, and I wanted to go faster, and for some reason, the teacher was, 'No. You have to stay at this pace.' So he went and the guitar stayed."

This episode is a treasure trove for KISS fans and vintage guitar lovers alike, offering a behind-the-scenes look at the storied history of one of rock's most recognizable musicians and his amazing guitar collection. If you've ever wanted to know what guitars Stanley plays, don't miss this intimate and revealing exploration of Stanley's guitar collection, the stories behind them and his enduring love for Gibson guitars.

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