KISS’ Paul Stanley Reflects on Turning 70
Stanley was born Stanley Eisen in New York City on Jan. 20, 1952. In the early 1970s, he co-founded the band Wicked Lester with Gene Simmons, but the two eventually parted ways with the other members of the group in 1972. Later that year, they answer an ad in Rolling Stone placed by Peter Criss, a drummer "looking to do anything to make it." The trio then added Ace Frehley in January 1973.
They changed their name to KISS (Stanley is credited with coming up with the name) in 1973, creating one of the most iconic rock acts of all time. While many musicians have filled the guitarist and drummer slots for KISS over the years, Stanley (under the persona "The Starchild") and Simmons have continued to lead the band.
"In recent years I've started to see my birthdays as a time for me to reflect on the past year and assess my life and actions rather than purely celebrating my making it through another year (which frankly I had little to do with)," Stanley says. "Did I tell my family and dear friends that I love them and did I show them? Did I embrace people with acceptance, tolerance and giving some the benefit of the doubt? Did I appreciate the daily gifts and miracles around me?
"I'm a work in progress but am always striving to do better. I'm doing pretty good I think. My birthday has so much more value for me with it being less about cake and presents and more about who I am in this big world. Thanks for being a big part of this last year. Always grateful, Paul."
KISS is set to headline the 2022 installment of the Welcome to Rockville festival in Daytona Beach, Fla. The other headliners for the event include Guns N' Roses, Korn and Foo Fighters. The band will also release another installment of their Off The Soundboard official live bootleg series with a live recording of their 2004 Virginia Beach show.