KISS played their first live show on January 30, 1973. The performance, which earned the band $50 took place in a New York nightclub in front of 10 people. To commemorate 40 years of rocking the world, all current members of KISS have written thank yous on the band's website, Kissonline.
Paul Stanley commented on how KISS has by far outlived what he was ever expecting out of the band. Says Stanley “My dream from the start was five years of glory with KISS. Along with Peter and Ace, we kicked doors open that stood in our way, and every band member who has stood with me at some point during these decades has played an essential part in turning that five year dream into a phenomenal 40 year reality.”
Bassist Gene Simmons recalled the split from his and Paul's previous band, Wicked Lester: “Wicked Lester had just finished its album. Though we had a real recording contract with a major label, and though we had finished an entire album, we were depressed – it just wasn’t what we had envisioned.” Simmons already had some excellent business skills back then, as he told the website: “We didn't have a manager. We didn't have an agent,” said Simmons. “I made a phone call cold to a place called Popcorn in Queens, NY and on the phone convinced the guy to hire a band, who would soon be changing their name from WICKED LESTER to KISS.”
KISS's newest member, guitarist Tommy Thayer, made sure to point out that all eras and constellations of the band deserves praise: “At 40 years strong, I'm proud to be in one of the greatest bands in rock history. KISS is a band that is as full of life and vitality today as it was 10, 20, 30 and 40 years ago. All eras of the band should be celebrated today. Long live KISS.”