In a frank and honest conversation with Rolling Stone, Kiss bassist and singer, Gene Simmons, said he believes Lady Gaga has the potential to make good rock music—if only she cut out the disco and pole dancing.
Simmons was being interviewed by the magazine marking the 40th anniversary of the Kiss album, Destroyer; and he pulled no punches whilst aiming at today’s artists for failing to produce the same quality of music as Kiss did years ago.
Simmons said: “As far as I’m concerned, rock is dead. There ain’t no new bands.”
But instead of condemning the whole of the new crop of artists, he insisted there’s still a little hope—in the form of Gaga, adding, “As far as I’m concerned, if Lady Gaga dropped the disco and the pole dancing and all that stuff and put together a rock band, that would be legitimate, because she’s got the musical goods.
Adding: “She can write songs, play instruments and can actually sing. And she understands the fearless quality of spectacle. I’d love to see her do Queen-style music. She can do it.”
Gene also said he likes Jennifer Lopez, Ciara, Shakira, Madonna, and “all the girls with names that end in ‘a’.” Giving the girls a backhanded compliment, he said: “They’re very talented in their own way – but it’s dishonest. They have a backing track. It’s really a karaoke bar. Karaoke is more honest, because you know it’s karaoke.”
Not holding back, the rocker then took aim at rap music, “I am looking forward to the death of rap. I’m looking forward to music coming back to lyrics and melody, instead of just talking. A song, as far as I’m concerned, is by definition lyric and melody… or just melody.
“Rap will die next year, 10 years from now, at some point, and then something else will come along.” He says rap is OK, and admits, “I don’t have the cultural background to appreciate being a gangster. Of course that’s not what it’s all about, but that’s where it comes from. That’s the heart and soul of it. It came from the streets.”
During his rant, Gene’s also admitted to being confused as to why artists have kept up the trend of not making music for profit.
“I hate the Internet,” he says. “I make a living, but to be a new band now and just give out your music for free, it’s the crime of the century.”