Gene Simmons

Gene Simmons

Israeli actor and musician
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Trivia

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  • Has lived with model/actress Shannon Tweed since 1986, but they've never married. Simmons has said that while he respects the rights of those who choose to marry, it's not something he ever plans to do; specifically, he doesn't feel man by nature is meant to be in a monogamous relationship. "The only thing wrong with marriage is that one of the persons involved is a man," he often says.
  • Even though his father left the family when Simmons was a child, once he became rich he felt an obligation to buy both of his parents homes and provide them with financially worry-free lifestyles.
  • Prior to forming KISS, Gene Simmons was an elementary school teacher.
  • Designer of the axe shaped bass guitar.
  • There is a KISS tribute band in Seattle called Gene's Addiction.
  • Gave Elijah Allman (Cher's son) his first guitar at age 11.
  • With KISS no longer occupying his time, Gene has a number of ventures he's turned to: resurrecting his record label, $immons Records, acting in and producing feature films, starting up his own Women of Wrestling league (with a W.O.W. magazine and clothing line to follow), creating his own radio talk show, and possibly even going on the lecture circuit.
  • Is the founder of Simmons Publishing, which publishes books and magazines.
  • He has one non-negotiable condition for anyone interested in signing with his record label Simmons Records: No Drugs.
  • Discovered Van Halen in 1977 and produced the demo that got them signed to Warner Brothers Records. Unfortunately, Simmons had to release them from their contract when he couldn't convince anyone at WB of the band's potential. Bill Aucoin, then-manager of Kiss, told Simmons he didn't think Van Halen would have any commercial success (Van Halen's debut self-titled album went platinum, and their famous 1984 album has sold more than 10 million copies and has been certified diamond).
  • Publisher of the magazine 'Tongue' since late 2001. Is currently working on a KISS brand of condoms, among other things. Most of his post-KISS career will be concentrated on producing feature films and creating new KISS merchandise.
  • Co-founder of the famous hard-rock group, KISS, famous for outrageous antics and kabuki-like make-up.
  • Once played in a band called Cathedral, several years before forming KISS. Among the names the band considered before settling on KISS in 1973 were Albatross, The Crimson Harpoon and F**k. Paul Stanley was the band member who suggested KISS.
  • Simmons, in terms of political views, describes himself as neither Democrat nor Republican, but voting based on the issues. While he supports a woman's right to abortion, the environment and church/state separation, he supported Bush in 2004 because he agreed with Bush's foreign policy stands.
  • Before forming Kiss he played in bands called Cathedral, Bullfrog Beer, Coffee, The Long Island Sounds, and Wicked Lester. This last one had another future Kiss member, Paul Stanley.
  • He is the son of Hungarian Jews. His mother, Florence, is a Holocaust survivor. In his book "Sex Money KISS", Simmons wrote that his grandmother willingly went into a gas chamber with his great-grandmother because she didn't want her mother to have to die alone. Simmons' mother is the only member of her entire family to survive the Holocaust. She managed to survive partly due to her skills as a hairdresser (a wife of one of the Nazi German officer liked how she did hair and had her kept around to be her hairstylist).
  • Has a son, Nick Simmons (b. 1989), and a daughter, Sophie Simmons (b. 1992), with Shannon Tweed.
  • Once considered becoming a rabbi.
  • Produced many acts in the 1980s, including Keel, Wendy O' Williams, EZO, and Black and Blue.
  • Launches fashion label, "Gene Simmons - Dragonfly" (August 2002)
  • Is 'The Demon' In The Hard Rock Band, KISS
  • Was offered the role of Nick Hurley in Flashdance, but turned it down due to his agenda with KISS.
  • Taught 6th grade at PS 75 in Spanish Harlem.
  • He has a business partner named Rich Abramson. Their company is known as Simmons Abramson Marketing.
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