by Cathy Lamb
Who is your favorite rock star?
No. Really. Think about it.
Who do you just LOVE?
Who did you rock out with when you were younger? Van Halen? Journey? Styx? The Rolling Stones?
Who did you want to be? The singer? The bass guitarist? Did you want to bang on the drums? Was being in a rock band a dream you tossed around for years?
When I was younger, I listened to KISS, when I could sneak them in.
Now, of course KISS was discouraged in my household.
I had loving, smart, dear parents, but KISS? Well, that pushed it. THEY pushed it. The outrageous costumes. Gene Simmons’ tongue hanging out. The blood. The hard rock. The pounding music.
My father had, at one time, wanted to become a priest but a wife and kids won out. My mother was the product of Texas, her mother an orphaned southern belle. She was an English teacher.
We went to mass every Sunday and CCD on Wednesday nights. We were hardly allowed to watch TV, only The Waltons and Saturday morning cartoons and Bewitched. We were handed books and told to play outside.
We kept it clean in the Straight family home, and KISS, with all that leather and those lyrics, did not fit into our family realm.
And all that just made them more appealing! I was shocked when I saw their costumes, in a fun way.
I recently read Paul Stanley’s autobiography. I gotta tell ya, it’s fascinating. It’s about his childhood, which was very rough and lonely, with parents that did not fill their role well. It’s about his sister and her tragic problems and how he was alone a lot growing up, but had ambition. He had drive. He was absolutely determined to make it as a rock star and he believed in himself.
It’s about the band and their history, their friendships and how it all fell apart. It’s about women and drugs and alcohol and the money aspects of being in the band. It’s about all the people who were around the band – the groupies, the managers, and the money men.
And it’s about Paul Stanley’s journey. How he changed and grew, found what he loved, found himself, matured and found his place with his own people with all the mess that life brings – especially when one is in a rock band.
Definitely a different read for me, and I loved it.
Rock on, read on.
Cathy Lamb drinks too much coffee and daydreams endlessly. That’s how she writes her books. She is the author of many novels, including 2016’s The Language of Sisters.