Synopses & Reviews
In Face the Music
, Paul Stanley — the co-founder and famous “Starchild” frontman of KISS — reveals for the first time the incredible highs and equally incredible lows in his life both inside and outside the band. Face the Music
is the shocking, funny, smart, inspirational story of one of rock's most enduring icons and the group he helped create, define, and immortalize.
Stanley mixes compelling personal revelations and gripping, gritty war stories that will surprise even the most steadfast member of the KISS Army. He takes us back to his childhood in the 1950s and 60s, a traumatic time made more painful thanks to a physical deformity. Born with a condition called microtia, he grew up partially deaf, with only one ear. But this instilled in him an inner drive to succeed in the most unlikely of pursuits: music.
With never-before-seen photos and images throughout, Stanley's memoir is a fully realized and unflinching portrait of a rock star, a chronicle of the stories behind the famous anthems, the many brawls and betrayals, and all the drama and pyrotechnics on and off the stage. Raw and confessional, Stanley offers candid insights into his personal relationships, and the turbulent dynamics with his bandmates over the past four decades. And no one comes out unscathed — including Stanley himself.
“People say I was brave to write such a revealing book, but I wrote it because I needed to personally reflect on my own life. I know everyone will see themselves somewhere in this book, and where my story might take them is why I'm sharing it.” —Paul Stanley
"Born with an ear deformity called microtia a condition in which cartilage on the outer ear fails to from properly which left him with an ugly stump on the right side of his head, Stanley, co-founder and lead singer of KISS, faced ridicule and taunts from classmates and found little sympathy or affection from his unhappy family. By the time he was 12, the Beatles blew into his world on the Ed Sullivan Show, and he discovered rock and roll; he eventually picked up a guitar, joined a band, and music eventually became his refuge. Elegantly and thoughtfully, Stanley takes us behind the mask of Starchild, his KISS persona, and shares intimately his own insecurities about his physical appearance and his emotional life. Along the way, he chronicles the meteoric rise of KISS he and Gene Klein, who changes his last name to Simmons, just as Stanley Eisen becomes Paul Stanley, start playing in a band in high school in the 1970s, their difficulties, and their eventual fall from fame. Throughout the glory years, Stanley remains lonely and feels like an outsider off stage. In 1998, his starring role in the Phantom of the Opera dramatically prompts Stanley to face himself: 'Why had I let my birth defect keep me from sharing myself with people, from embracing people from embracing the fullness of life?' He starts working with children with facial deformities in an organization called About Face, and here he movingly shares the lessons he's learned: 'It's not about being perfect, being normal, or seeking approval; it's about being forgiving of imperfection, being generous to all sorts of people, and giving approval.'" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"People say I was brave to write such a revealing book, but I wrote it because I needed to personally reflect on my own life. I know everyone will see themselves somewhere in this book, and where my story might take them is why I'm sharing it."
Well known for his onstage persona, the "Starchild," Paul Stanley has written a memoir with a gripping blend of personal revelations and gritty war stories about the highs and lows both inside and outside of KISS. Born with a condition called microtia (an ear deformity rendering him deaf on the right side), Stanley's traumatic childhood experiences produced an inner drive to succeed in the most unlikely of places: music. Taking readers through the series of events that led to the founding of KISS, the personal relationships that helped shape his life, and the turbulent dynamics among his bandmates over the past forty years, this book leaves no one unscathed—including Stanley himself.
With never-before-seen photos and images throughout, Face the Music is a colorful portrait of a man and the band he helped create, define, and sustain—made larger than life in artfully told stories that are shocking, funny, inspirational, and honest.
About the Author
Paul Stanley is the frontman and rhythm guitarist for KISS, which he cofounded in New York City in 1973. He is the designer of numerous KISS album covers, costumes, and concert stages, in addition to writing many of KISS's most successful songs. With sales of more than one hundred million records worldwide, KISS sits atop the list of American bands, with the most gold-certified albums earned in history. Along with his bandmates, Stanley was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014. A painter, with art sales reaching two million dollars; a solo musician; a musical stage performer; founding partner in Rock & Brews restaurants; and co-owner of the Arena Football League's L.A. KISS, Stanley is a committed and active supporter of various Wounded Warrior Project organizations. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Erin, and four children.