KISS legend Gene Simmons is releasing a new book about the rock phenomenon of the ’27 Club.’ Simmons’ upcoming book, 27: The Legend and Mythology of the 27 Club, will deconstruct the somber institution and question what makes “rich and famous” musicians “destroy themselves” at such a young age.

The 27 Club has been acquiring new members for decades, from Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin to Kurt Cobain and Amy Winehouse. “Frances Bean, Kurt Cobain's daughter, is friends with my son, they hang out," Simmons tells WRIF 101.1 FM. "You should read the quotes she does in the media. 'Hey, it's real cool your father dies while you're still a baby from drugs.' No, it ain't. It sucks."

Simmons continues, "You'd be shocked at how deep this runs mysteriously. But, again, it's not about the idea that it's 27, although we ask that question: 'Why then? Why not 28? Why not 30?' and all that. But it's really about when you become rich and famous and everybody admires you, what is that thing that makes people destroy themselves, even to die? What is that? The rest of the world adores you and your fans love you and they give you money and fame and all that, and then you kill yourself. I don't get it."

Gene Simmons is an interesting character to be tackling the 27 Club mythos, as he says he’s “literally never been high or drunk” in his life, other than getting some nitrous at the dentist’s. Simmons gives credit to his mother’s strength as a concentration camp survivor for his straight path. “She had a horrific life. And what right do I have to torture her and make her unhappy? No, that's never gonna happen,” Simmons explains.

“If you drink enough, your 'equipment' won't work. If you get high, trust me, you're not gonna be witty or look cool,” concludes Simmons. “I'll tell you what's cool — somebody who arches their back, stands up straight and says, 'Every day above ground is a good day. Now watch me burn rubber.' That's cool." [via Blabbermouth]

Gene Simmons’ 27: The Legend and Mythology of the 27 Club is set for an Aug. 14 release date via powerHouse Books. To pre-order the book, click here.


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