Paul Stanley Points Out KISS Classic's Overt Reference To The Four Tops


As a child, KISS frontman Paul Stanley grew up hearing classical music at home. As a teen, he discovered R&B, soul and rock 'n' roll and developed a deep appreciation for musical theatre.

What might seem like diverse taste is, to Stanley, duality.

"I think my philosophy has always been that there's two kinds of music: good and bad," the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer told Jim Kerr and Shelli Sonstein Thursday morning. "When people narrow their exposure and say, 'Oh, I only like rock,' it's like saying, 'I only like pizza.'

"So are you going to eat it morning, noon and night? You're not going to get very well nourished. I think the opportunity is out there to see so much great music, so much great art. But you have to go into it with an open mind, otherwise chances are you're not going to like it. But you're the only one who's going to suffer for it."

A day before the release of his debut album, Now and Then, with his Soul Station side project, Stanley expounded on the direct connections between soul and rock and roll.

"Just for an example: if there hadn't been a Sam Cooke, and if there hadn't of been a David Ruffin, there wouldn't have been a Rod Stewart and there wouldn't be a Steve Perry," he said. "You need those roots. It's like a recipe. You gotta put everything into it in different degrees."

For himself, Stanley says he's lucky to have been able to see Otis Redding and Solomon Burke. Kiss wouldn't be what it is without that music.

"If somebody kind of picks away at the surface, you'll find that music in Kiss. There's a few so obvious ones. In 'Shout It Out Loud,' 'Well the night's begun and you want some fun / Do you think you're gonna find it (Think you're gonna find it?)' The answer — the call and response — that's ['I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch']. That's The Four Tops."

Listen to the full conversation via the player above or here on iHeartRadio.

Go here to get Soul Station's Now and Then.