Chuck D Responds To Kiss Front Man Gene Simmons
2013 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Chuck D is supportive of new Hall of Famers’ Kiss, but the feelings aren’t mutual.
In a recent interview with Radio.com Kiss front man and bassist Gene Simmons expressed hid dislike for hip-hop acts like Public Enemy by stating that they don’t belong in the Rock Hall.
In response Chuck D explained to Billboard how rock and roll like hip-hop derive from African American culture. The rapper said Simmons “took the old-fashioned, limited position that rock ’n’ roll is for guitars and some other primitive shit like that. I guess his point was that he wants to be judged against the artists he thinks are his peers, like maybe Aerosmith. But yo, dude, one thing that the rocker doesn’t understand is that rock came out of something.”
Despite Simmons views, Chuck D still supports the Rock Hall’s decision to induct Kiss because of their ability to perform and impact a crowd.
“What Kiss did was like Parliament-Funkadelic in some ways. Say you came up listening to rock, and you saw Parliament-Funkadelic turn a crowd out. Even if you totally didn’t understand the music, you had to respect what it was doing. And it’s the same with Kiss. You’ve got to look at the impact they had across the board,” said the Public Enemy front man.
But while he may support the Rock Hall’s decision, that doesn’t mean that he’s a fan of the group or their music.
“There’s a place for high art and a place for low art. Low art is great in low places. And this is a performance art, at the end of the day. You can write the greatest song in the world, but who cares when you can’t perform it well? If people consider your music a piece of shit but you can perform it well and win people over to it, you deserve an A grade for the performance even if you only get a C grade in music.” –Chris M. Garner