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25 Years Later, Eric Singer Looks Back on His First Kiss Show

When Eric Singer got set to make his first live appearance as a member of Kiss on April 23, 1992, he could have been forgiven for experiencing mixed emotions – but the education he’d received from an early age meant he was prepared, calm and focused.

It was an emotional moment for the Kiss family, as they continued to deal with the death of previous drummer Eric Carr five months earlier.

Carr’s cancer battle had meant he’d been unable to fulfill recording duties for their 1992 album Revenge, and so Singer – who’d been a member of Paul Stanley’s solo band, and also Black Sabbath and Alice Cooper – had been recruited on a temporary basis.

Singer told Ultimate Classic Rock: “Paul told me Eric was ill, but I didn’t know any details. He asked if I could play on ‘God Gave Rock and Roll to You’ for the Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey movie. Later that summer I was on tour with Alice Cooper, and Paul called me up again and said they needed help.

“They’d tried to work with Eric on two separate occasions, but he wasn’t well enough. Doing a record isn’t like the rigors of touring, but it’s a demand on your time. You can be working 10, 12, 14 hours every day. Eric wasn’t up to it. Originally I was only going to play on half the record, and they were going to do the other half with another studio musician. But once we started, Gene [Simmons], Paul and Bob Ezrin went, ‘We think there’s a good chemistry.’”

Producer Ezrin called Cooper’s manager, Shep Gordon, and asked to cut a deal. As a result, Revenge was recorded in two stages between legs of Cooper’s world tour. “I was recording up to the day before I went to Europe,” Singer recalled. “After the tour, they got back in touch and asked me about being in the band, because Eric had unfortunately passed on. I had very mixed emotions – I thought, ‘Here’s a good opportunity for me, but under the worst conditions.’” Asked whether the possibility of being offered the job had occurred to him, he said: “Did I have a feeling it was going to go that way? Yeah.”

Singer knew how to apply himself to the challenge of replacing Carr. “I’ve always had what you might call a workmanlike mentality to being in a band. I know a drummer is there to provide a certain function. I had good training – I played in my father’s band from a young age, and my dad was quite the taskmaster. I learned how to be a key-player band guy, to really listen to people, and to listen to the leader.

“When you join a band that has a predetermined style and direction, you have to fit into that. You can’t come in and go, ‘Okay, well, this is what I think and here’s how we’re going to do it.’ When I joined Black Sabbath, they had a catalogue of songs and Tony Iommi had a style of drumming he preferred. When you create new music with people you can go, ‘Okay, this is how I hear it.’ When you join Kiss you go, ‘What’s their style, and how do I fit in?’”

Continue reading at ultimateclassicrock.com >>

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