During a recent conversation with Kyle Meredith on Morning Joe, KISS co-founder and bassist, Gene Simmons, talked about the significance of showmanship and explained why it’s so important to him that KISS puts on a great visual show while acknowledging that their ticket prices are quite high.

KISS is without a doubt one of the most successful bands of all time, and aside from their great music, the band is also known for their amazing shows and their extreme use of pyrotechnics on stage. In specific, after their latest New Year’s Eve show in Dubai, Gene Simmons announced that they managed to break the Guinness world record for the biggest pyro show, with approximately $1 million dollars being spent solely on pyrotechnics.

In his recent interview, Gene Simmons explained why pyrotechnics are so important to him as a performer. He said that a great musician or band needs to put on a great performance so that the audience can feel like they’re watching a show and not just a person who’s singing. Simmons said that going ‘up on stage with a microphone’ is not at all showmanship.

He went on to say that people pay too much money for concert tickets and that the performer needs to be aware of that fact and do their best to put on both an audio and visual show. In such a way, Simmons in a way explained why KISS tickets are so expensive while demonstrating the importance of showmanship and how much it affects a band’s success.

Simmons went on to say that when people go to live shows, they should be given something to remember, a great stage performance. At that point, Simmons started talking specifically about KISS and said that their shows have ‘more firepower on that stage than some thirdworld countries‘ and in a way, explained why their concert tickets are so expensive.

Here’s what Gene Simmons said in the interview:

“And sadly a lot of great very, very talented musicians and singers stand up on stage with a microphone all by themselves. It’s like, ‘Give me a show! At least give me lights! Give me something!’

You’re paying so much money for a ticket and you’ve got to be cognizant of that fact. There I go with another big word like ‘gymnasium.'”

He went on to say:

“It’s audio and visual, it’s both. So when you’re at home or in your car, it’s just your ear that gets tickled, but when you go to a live event, you got to tickle the orbs, you got to give them something they’ll remember, and the lights…

I mean, we have more firepower on that stage than some thirdworld countries. And I mean that the very nicest way.”

Click here for the source and you can watch the whole interview below.