Just how relevant is your t-shirt? Shock rockers KISS think a t-shirt is pretty darned relevant after it was reported that a 2012 interview, showing them asking a journalist to remove his Iron Maiden t-shirt, went viral. The famous 70s band first insisted that he turn the Iron Maiden t-shirt inside out, and then simply got him a freshly minted KISS t-shirt sporting the band’s iconic logo to conduct the interview with instead.

Poor Gustav, the hapless interviewer, tried to placate the band but KISS seems to be a pretty determined outfit and they had him turning, what is clearly a much loved Iron Maiden t-shirt, inside out before the interview could proceed. After all, when four irritated men wearing makeup and full body armor ask you to take your t-shirt off, you probably should, however awkward you may feel about it.

 

 

Gene Simmons, the band’s famous front man, has been reported in Forbes and being a very aggressive businessman and astute brand-meister for both the shock-rocker’s band (yes they still tour) and vast brand legacy. His comments in the video point to how KISS was the mega band when Iron Maiden was in their infancy and how the journalist was not showing Simmons and company the proper “respect” by interviewing them in a ‘ Maiden t-shirt.

After all, here is a man who has built a massive brand around this rock band which is reported to include around 2500 licenses, his own reality TV show, a coffee-shop, restaurant chain and a few bestsellers. It seems, from Simmons’ point of view at least, that the absence of a KISS t-shirt on the hapless Argentine journalist Gustav, was more than the tongue-wielding shock rocker could bear and had to insist on his interviewer wearing some of their own merch.

KISS rose to prominence in the 1970s and 80s with the wave of so-called shock-rockers who swept through popular music led by the likes of Alice Cooper and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, the prototypical shockers. Gene Simmons’ branding and merchandising sense was one of the more remarkable efforts of the time and singled Simmons out as a business leader for his field. The band’s prominence and success fueled a craze for the iconic logo emblazoned on KISS t-shirts as a cultural icon, which is still highly prized today.  Year’s after the heyday of this hall of fame band, it seems that old habits, like old rockers and favorite old t-shirts, die hardest. So, when it’s time to dig out that old KISS logo and print it across the chest of a black or grey 100% cotton t-shirt, look no further than SpectraUSA’s exceptional range of cotton apparel, built for rockin’ great t-shirts the kind which, we are, sure, Mr Simmons would be proud to insist any journalist try on.