Ace, aka Paul Daniel Frehley, answered a newspaper ad in 1973 from founding KISS members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley seeking a guitarist with “flash and balls.” As many know, Frehley had all that and more as the band’s lead guitarist.
“Space Ace,” as he was called, was an essential part of the world famous live KISS shows with his larger than life stage presence and smoke billowing guitar. Frehley shredded on the band’s biggest hits including “Rock N Roll All Night” and “Detroit Rock City.”
Ace branched out from KISS and released his first solo effort in 1978, which spawned the hit single “New York Groove,” and started the band Frehley’s Comet in 1987.
Despite rumors of bad blood between Frehley and Simmons/Stanley in the 90’s, all four original members reunited in 1996 for the KISS Alive Worldwide Tour, the highest grossing tour of the year.
Frehley definitely left an impression on rock, with Kim Thayil of Soundgarden, Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, and Dimebag Darrell of Pantera as just of few fellow rockers who cite the axe man as an important influence.
Happy Birthday, Ace!
Be sure to leave your birthday wishes in the comment section below and head to Ace Frehley’s official website for more news.