Kiss rocker Paul Stanley apologises for bandmate Gene Simmons calling Prince’s death ‘pathetic’

Wednesday - 11/05/2016 08:52
PAUL Stanley has apologised for statements made by his Kiss bandmate Gene Simmons who called Prince’s death “pathetic”.

Outspoken Simmons told Newsweek he thought Prince was more talented than Michael Jackson, then added “but how pathetic that he killed himself. Don’t kid yourself, that’s what he did. Slowly, I’ll grant you … but that’s what drugs and alcohol is: a slow death.”

Simmons was speaking about recent deaths of rock icons and said: “Bowie was the most tragic of all because it was real sickness. All the other ones were a choice. (Prince) — drugs killed him. What do you think, he died f-rom a cold?”

Despite swirling rumours, full details of Prince’s autopsy and the cause of his death have yet to be released.

Simmons, who does not drink or use drugs, said “The one question I have is: When we all start out and we have these big dreams and you finally get your wish — you have more money than God and fame — what is that insane gene in us, well, a lot of us, that makes us want to succumb to the cliche of cliches: drugs and alcohol?”

Stanley took to Twitter to apologise for Simmons’ comments. “Embarrassed by cold clueless statements re Prince’s death. Without all the facts better to say nothing. My apologies.”

Stanley has had two hip replacements, which he put down to wearing high heel boots since Kiss began in the early ‘70s and jumping around on stage.

Prince’s death has divided rock icons Kiss. Picture: Chris O'Meara/AP

“With youth comes the sense of invincibility,” Stanley told News Corp last year. “It’s not that different for athletes, you don’t realise the damage you’re doing until it’s too late. I have no reason for anybody to feel sorry for me, but do my knees hurt? Hell yeah! I’ve done my body in. But it’s been glorious.”

After Prince’s death, Stanley was quick to relate — addressing rumours Prince may not have had hip surgery due to his religious faith.

“If you need hip replacement can't do it, pain can be excruciating & unrelenting,” he tweeted. “Don't jump to judge a tragedy.”

Simmons has now made a belated apology after a backlash f-rom his family, with no mention of his bandmate.

“I just got such s--- f-rom my family for my big mouth again,” Simmons wrote. “I apologise — I have a long history of getting very angry at what drugs do the families/friends of the addicts.

“I get angry at drug users because of my experience being around them coming up in the rock scene. In my experience they’ve made my life, the lives of their loved ones, difficult...Needless to say, I didn’t express myself properly here — I don’t shy away f-rom controversy and angry critics really don’t bother me at all. If I think I’m right, I’ll throw up a finger and dig my heels in and laugh. But this time, I was not. So, my apologies.”


Simmons is no stranger to headlines, or clashing with his bandmate over his attention-grabbing statements.

Last year Simmons belatedly backtracked on claims that suicidal people suffering depression should kill themselves, leading to Triple M in Australia to pull Kiss songs f-rom their playlists.

“I understand that,” Simmons told News Corp last year. “It was taken out of context. Nowadays it’s all about sound bites and headlines. There’s the headline ‘Gene Simmons says if you’re depressed go kill yourself’. If you read the full transcript in the article you’ll understand. There are people with depression with real mental, chemical, sometimes biological issues. Depression is a disease. What happened to Robin Williams is horrible. It’s a real medical condition. But it was taken out of context. Consider if someone is really ill, really needs to be in front of a doctor to save your life because you’re hurting your family. And all they write is ‘Gene Simmons says go kill yourself’.”

Gene Simmons enjoys making headlines. Picture: Ellen Smith

However Simmons,still found time to lash out at drug addiction — something his former Kiss band mates Ace Frehley and Peter Criss struggled with.

“There’s also assholes and drug addicts who stand on top of a building and they want attention. I don’t subscribe or prescribe to the idea drug addicts have a disease. If you’re lucky enough to live in western society you are lucky enough to have the choice of life or death. If you live under ISIS or North Korea you don’t have any choices. If you at least have the choice of life or death it should be up to you. Even if you’re insane and you want to put yourself away, OK.

“There’s a difference between people who need medical help and people who are assholes and pariahs on society. Do I want the guy who steals f-rom everybody and leaves children at home and becomes a drug addict, if they contemplate doing themselves away, actually I support that choice.”

Author: DailyTelegraph Australia

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