Former KISS and current GRAND FUNK RAILROAD guitarist Bruce Kulick was recently interviewed by Totally Driven Radio. The full conversation can be streamed below. A few excerpts follow (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET):
On playing with GRAND FUNK RAILROAD:
Bruce: “It’s a great thing to be a part of this whole classic rock [scene]. Being a part of GRAND FUNK is wonderful. There seems to be a good appetite from the public to see [classic rock] bands such as GRAND FUNK. People want to feel good, and certainly, we entertain. I’ve been quite thrilled to be a part of all these years — it’s been 17 years already of playing with them. I’m excited about the fact that we just really give it 100 percent and we have a great show, and that people are always very thrilled to see us. It’s a good feeling.”
On how rock fits into the modern music industry:
Bruce: “We can talk for hours about what’s going on in the music business. It’s so confusing, because it’s so different. Because people don’t buy music the way they used to, and the way that the internet and YouTube and streaming services have all affected the diet of how music is enjoyed by the masses, it’s kind of odd. Each generation wants their own kind of music anyway, and then of course, at times they stretch out and discover something. I love it when I see young kids wearing [LED] ZEPPELIN or BEATLES or KISS t-shirts. It’s a lot of fun to see. I’ve met some young GRAND FUNK fans, and I’m trying to figure out who exposed them to that. I’m not that worried about what the current artists that are hot now will be doing in twenty years, but I am aware that I’m in a nice niche that people love talking about — classic rock like GRAND FUNK, and KISS seems to just be untouchable in the sense of popularity, or discussion at least, and the interest in the band. That’s all eras, too, not just the wear-makeup version of them, so it’s quite flattering for me.”
On why he hasn’t released more solo material:
Bruce: “People love live music, thank God, because they’re not buying CDs anymore. It’s kind of hampered [releasing more solo material] a bit, and I do feel bad about it. The only way to do it is that you do some sort of PledgeMusic-type thing, which means you’re really pre-selling it. I know if I said whatever my budget that I felt like I could do a quality, competent record, that I said it was X amount, I know I would get the support and they would buy it, but I wouldn’t ask anybody for money without having the music already mapped out in my head. I have some songs. I keep saying I want to do it. Every year, new things come [and] kind of, like, present themselves to you that are career-related. I’ve been very shy about offering items that are related to me, just because I wasn’t really being aggressive about it. I did my three solo records, and I haven’t done anything since then. I don’t want to say that I don’t ever want to do new music. I am thinking about it. There’s lots of times when I’m just sitting around playing the guitar, and I go, ‘Wow, that’s a cool riff,’ and I record it and I save it. I have a lot of those kind of things, but this discussion we’re having is very real in the fact that many, many artists that probably have the finances of a hundred times of what I could think about could do it, and they don’t. I always scratch my head that Paul McCartney did some terrific solo records in the past 12-15 years, and not all of them have sold very well, and some of them are amazing. You’ve got, like, rock royalty, and he can sell out stadiums around the world. I know he’s going to put out something again soon, so it hasn’t stopped him, but I’m just saying, it’s got to be a little shocking to him because it’s just not relative to what he’s doing in that stadium business and then he only sells 250,000 copies. It just doesn’t relate to the gross of the gigs. That proves a point, and it happens from the [ROLLING] STONES to everybody.”
Kulick joined KISS in 1984, soon after then-guitarist Mark St. John left the band after being diagnosed with Reiter’s Syndrome, a form of inflammatory arthritis. He recorded five studio albums with the group – “Asylum”, “Crazy Nights”, “Hot In The Shade”, “Revenge” and “Carnival Of Souls” — and can also be heard on the band’s “Alive III” and “Kiss Unplugged” live sets. He joined GRAND FUNK RAILROAD in 2001 and continues to serve as the band’s lead guitarist today.