Here is the real (fake) story of Kiss's "Beth"

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/04/22/here-is-the-real-fake-story.html

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Missing the part where he comes home in the middle of the night to find all his stuff on the lawn.

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I know i’ve seen this before but I didn’t realize that until I had enjoyed it again.

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i was never a big KISS fan – never understood the hype, only really cared for a couple songs overall – but i seriously, seriously have always loved this song.

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The parody is cute, but I have a question about the original song.

What is the deal with that hi-pitched whine in the opening bars and a few other quiet parts of the song? It’s clearest in the first few seconds of the song.

I think it’s a violin. Maybe it’s just me, but that specific tone hits just the right hertz to make my skin crawl.

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I was a big fan of them when I was a kid. (Hey, at least I can admit it, right?) What has never ceased to amaze me about them is that, a few Gene Simmons songs excepted (God Of Thunder comes to mind), most of their stuff was straight up bubblegum pop, but the outrageous costumes and theatrics hid that fact nicely.

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Don’t fib you’re still a fan—only a Kiss fan can categorize their songs as ‘Gene songs’ ‘Paul songs’ or ‘Ace songs’

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they were savvy, for sure. all my friends at the time were HUGE fans, big KISS Army kids. i just didn’t get it, until Beth came along. I do like some of their other songs now, though – i mean, who can’t raise a fist to Rock & Roll All Night, or Strutter?

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it was called “sweetening”

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Honestly, the only one I could come up with off the top of my head that wasn’t bubblegum pop was God of Thunder, but I’m sure there must have been a few others. Cold Gin is another exception, but I can’t even think of who sang lead on that one.

Now I will admit that the Blacklist episode that opened with Ace Frehley’s version of New York Groove just absolutely thrilled me.

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Actually, there is a story here.

In an interview, Gene Simmons, notoriously crude, rude, macho jerk was asked if there was any song that affected him emotionally, said “Yes. Everytime we perform ‘Beth’, I weep. I weep because Peter Criss wrote the song before he joined KISS, and every time we play it, we have to pay HIM money!”

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More than a decade after getting online, I realized I needed Ace’s New York Groove cover. I hadn’t heard it since I was a kid during the late 70s. Saw the 12" version, and got that, too. Then I remembered how wonderful his Fractured Mirror is, & also found out he’d written several sequels, so grabbed them all. The orig is still the best, but some of 'em are pretty damn good.

I also got Gene’s Living in Sin (at the Holiday Inn), just to play for my bassist BF. I put it on, and he’d never heard it before! I refused to tell him who it was, that he would recognize the singer. I wish there were a pic of his face when it finally hit him :smiley:

His reaction to Fractured Mirror was pretty great, too.

A coupla weeks later, we discussed Fractured Mirror and its other incarnations w/a guitarist friend. He was V surprised that he was learning things about Ace from a non-metalhead woman, and while on the way to see Richard Thompson perform, no less. :astonished:

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They couldn’t hide that bubblegum stuff from me, either. I was a savvy little jr high kid who was astounded that adults attended Kiss shows :smiley:

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never saw the appeal of this band in the first place

it’s not like these characteristics weren’t obvious the whole time

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Did a gig for Kiss a few years ago designing the video wall behind them for an Australian arena show and kinda lost a far bit of my cynicism and snark in the process. They are the real deal and it is all about the fans. They are the best Kiss tribute band you will ever see. Had a chat to their lighting director who actually had the tag ‘keep it simple stupid’ on his emails. He is a local from Melbourne who got the job when he filled in for them here, showed them a photo of his bedroom wall when he was a teenager covered in Kiss posters - got the job and has toured with them ever since!

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Showmanship. They gave the fans spectacle to fill in for mediocre musical talent/writing.

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I would ding Kiss for this, but I am fond of going to see GWAR and Green Jello

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Don’t forget Southern Culture on the Skids or Man or Astroman.

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Likewise, I wasn’t a huge fan White Zombie/Rob Zombie albums, but I always loved the concerts. They were goofy but fun as hell. Putting on a good show is paying an audience back for their support.

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There’s no shame in being a KISS fan. They didn’t do any earth shattering stuff but they made some good and competent rock music and put on a good show. Gene Simmons is a complete twat though.

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