With Kiss bassist Gene Simmons recently restating his claim that he once had to talk Eddie Van Halen out of leaving Van Halen and joining Kiss in 1982, the Van Halen News Desk has dug up a rare interview in which Eddie addressed the rumor. In the 1995 interview, Alan K. Stout of The Times Leader asked Eddie if the story was true. He replied, “Not that I know of, unless I was so f***ed up I don’t remember . . . They might have just asked me in passing, and I just kind of laughed it off, probably. . . If it happened I’m sure i would have remembered.”
Simmons said in a recent interview with Guitar World that Eddie was “very serious” about leaving Van Halen at the time, adding, “He was so unhappy about how he and (David Lee) Roth were — or weren’t — getting along . . . Eddie said, ‘I want to join kiss. I don’t want to fight anymore with Roth. I’m sick and tired of it.’ But I told him, ‘Eddie, there’s not enough room. You need to be in a band where you can direct the music. You’re not going to be happy in Kiss.’ I talked him out of it. It didn’t fit.”
- Simmons did reportedly try to recruit Eddie for Kiss around 1977, after Simmons produced a 10-song demo for the then-unsigned act.
- Kiss guitarist/singer Paul Stanley has also said that he was unaware of any attempt by Eddie to join Kiss in 1982.
- The original lineup of Kiss will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame next month, although they will not perform.
- Van Halen reunited with Roth in 2007 after a 23-year split, soon after Van Halen itself was inducted into the Hall.