Legendary KISS drummer Peter Criss is saying goodbye to the stage. The co-founder of the rock group Kiss and co-author of its hit single “Beth” is retiring with a final show.
It’s his way to end a series of unhappy endings with Kiss, including the band’s 2014 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, where quarreling over which lineup would perform at the ceremony ended up with Kiss not playing at all.
On Saturday, Criss will play what he said is his last U.S. concert at New York City’s The Cutting Room. The audience can expect a mix of Kiss classics, his own solo material, and covers he always wanted to perform live but was told by Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, “We don’t do that; it’s not Kiss.”
“I want to leave the stage happy,” Criss said. “I got onto the stage not thinking about making a buck. It was just pure: Play drums, have a good time, meet girls, travel and get out of Brooklyn.”
The 71-year-old formed Kiss with Stanley and Simmons and guitarist Ace Frehley in 1973. Within two years the album “Alive!” captured the essence of the makeup and costume-wearing, bomb-detonating, blood spitting musical circus that was Kiss, and spawned one of rock’s all-time classic anthems, “Rock and Roll All Nite.”