Gene Simmons could soon be playing the role of his lifetime: A god. The Kiss singer and bassist is currently shopping around a music competition show called Coliseum, on which competitors form bands and perform for a panel of three judges. They also mix and match group members until finding the right combination until Simmons, the show’s “Rock Caesar,” gives a thumbs up to the winning combination. “If you’ve got the goods, I will be the god that will make your dreams come true, because I do have the power,” Simmons recently told Mipcom Daily News (via Classic Rock.)
The Kiss singer-songwriter announced the show at Mipcom, an annual entertainment industry trade show in Cannes, France where people can market new programs. Simmons and producer Chris Philip are hoping that the show will be picked up in several countries that will produce their own unique version of Coliseum, similar to the many international takes on singing competition shows like the Idol franchise. Simmons would be willing to appear in each edition of the show.
Simmons feels that creating a show that caters to non-divas sets it apart from singing-only competitions. “If Gene Simmons, or Mick Jagger or Jimi Hendrix or Bob Dylan or Madonna – you know, the biggest artists who have walked and still walk the face of the earth – got up there and tried to sing an Adele song or something, they would fail,” he said.
Philip tells Rolling Stone that he and Simmons are currently eyeing only international markets and that they would consider a U.S. version in the future. Once international broadcasters are interested, the TV exec says they would be able to go into production as early as the end of January. In the U.S., Simmons is currently one of the producers of the AMC series 4th and Loud, which chronicles the first year of the arena football team the L.A. Kiss, which he co-owns.
In other Simmons-related news, Kiss are reissuing their sixth studio album, 1977’s Love Gun, later this month as part of their 40th anniversary celebrations. The deluxe edition will contain a remastered version of the original album on one disc, while the second contains a variety of previously unreleased tracks. Among them are many working demos, including ones for “Plaster Caster” and “Much Too Soon,” as well as an early version of “I Know Who You Are” that features some lyrics that would later appear in the Gene Simmons track “Living in Sin.” The disc also features a “teaching demo” of “Love Gun,” in which Paul Stanley explains the song’s chord changes.
The bonus disc also features a 1977 radio interview with Simmons, as well as live recordings of “Christine Sixteen,” “Love Gun” and “Shock Me” from the group’s December 1977 concert in Landover, Maryland. Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott wrote the release’s liner notes.
Next month, Kiss will be performing a nine-concert residency at the Joint inside the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, between November 5th and November 23rd.
Love Gun Bonus Disc Track List:
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1. “Much Too Soon” (Demo)*
2. “Plaster Caster” (Demo)*
3. “Reputation” (Demo)
4. “Love Gun” (Teaching Demo)*
5. “Love Gun” (Demo)*
6. Gene Simmons Interview (1977)*
7. “Tomorrow and Tonight” (Demo)*
8. “I Know Who You Are” (Demo)*
9. “Love Gun” (Live 1977)*
10. “Christine Sixteen” (Live 1977)*
11. “Shock Me” (Live 1977)*