Ace Frehley bassist: "I would definitely buy a ticket to that show"

The broadest possible category for KISS discussion. Everything to do with KISS and its members, past and present. Posts offering bootleg, pirate, or illegal items, or links to those items, will be deleted. Please refer to the Terms Of Service (TOS) for this site for maximum board experience. Should any post contain material that violates your copyright, please follow the instructions on the DMCA takedown notice page.
StillAlive
Ready to sing Shock Me!
Ready to sing Shock Me!
Posts: 382
Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2021 7:46 am

Ace Frehley bassist: "I would definitely buy a ticket to that show"

Post by StillAlive »

Alabama musician preps for Ace Frehley/Alice Cooper tour, talks COVID-era ‘tour bubble’
September 16, 2021

“I would definitely buy a ticket to that show,” Philip Shouse says of the fall tour pairing shock-rock deity Alice Cooper and Kiss guitar legend Ace Frehley. “What a package.”

Shouse won’t have to shell out for tix though. The Decatur native and Nashville based musician plays bass in Frehley’s band, which also features guitarists Ryan Cook and Jeremy Asbock and drummer Matt Starr.

The Alice/Ace tour launches Sept. 18 at Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion in Gilford, NH. The trek winds through Alabama on Oct. 13 at Montgomery Performing Arts Centre and Oct. 13 at Birmingham’s BJCC Concert Hall. Tickets and more info available via acefrehley.com.

Shouse, Cook and Asbock are known collectively as The Talismen, a reference to 1978 TV movie “Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park.” They’ve backed Frehley onstage since 2018 and can also be heard on Frehley’s solid 2020 covers album “Origins, Vol. 2,” on a remake of sexy classic Kiss cut “She.”

This will be the first time Frehley, the beloved Spaceman from Kiss’ original lineup, has hit the road since the pandemic. Past tours backed by The Talismen featured setlists heavy on Kiss tunes like “Cold Gin,” “Black Diamond,” “Detroit Rock City” and “Deuce,” as well as songs off Frehley’s 1978 self-titled debut album, like disco-rock fave “New York Groove” and the ferocious “Rip It Out.” (Famously, all four members of Kiss’ original lineup released solo debuts on the same day in ‘78, but Frehley’s is easily the best. And rocks the hardest too.)

As a massive lifelong Kiss fan, playing that music with Frehley is beyond a thrill for Shouse. Growing up, the guitar solo on “Deuce” was the first solo he ever learned. Frehley’s song-within-a-song solos are a huge influence on Generation X guitar notables, including Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready and Soundgarden’s Kim Thayil. With his offbeat sense of humor and frequently imitated cackle of a laugh, Frehley is also one of rock’s all-time great characters.

Speaking of characters, The Talismen got the Ace gig from previously backing another Kiss legend, bassist Gene Simmons. They’ve been Simmons’ solo band since 2017. In 2018, Shouse and company did double duty when Simmons and Frehley toured together in Australia. With Simmons’ solo band, Shouse plays guitar.

Shouse is also a full-time member of classic heavy-metal band Accept. He plays guitar for that German combo, known for 1983 hit “Balls to the Wall,” which sounds like AC/DC to the nth degree. He can be heard on Accept’s ferocious 2021 studio album “Too Mean To Die” and concert release “Symphonic Terror (Live at Wacken 2017)”.

Besides all that, he’s as genuinely nice as any rocker you’ll ever meet. On a recent afternoon, Shouse checked in for a phoner before hitting the road with Ace and Alice. Edited excerpts are below:

Phil, I know Ace Frehley has a lot of classics you and his band pretty much have to play. But what are some other songs you’d like to see slip into Ace’s setlist for the Alice Cooper tour?

I would think that a ‘78 solo album song would be at the top of the list. Maybe “Speedin’ Back To My Baby.” My favorite to play off of that album with him I think probably is “I’m In Need Of Love,” which is maybe kind of a long shot. Love that one.

I think we have like an hour or something like that (as Cooper’s opening act on the tour). So it’s gonna be a quick thing. But what a great pairing, and what a way to come back (after touring was shutdown in 2020 due to the pandemic). We didn’t come back with some weekend gigs, it was five weeks with Alice Cooper!

What’s your go-to Alice Cooper album?

I love “Alice Cooper Goes To Hell” and I’ve been listening to “From The Inside,” that’s the one he did with kind of the Elton John songwriting team. But it’s probably gonna be “Killer” and or “Love It To Death.” Those early, (with production by) Bob Ezrin records. And the new record (2021 Cooper LP “Detroit Stories”) is fantastic. There’s some “Welcome to My Nightmare” moments on there, big horn parts, and I was really happy when I heard that whole record.

With all the bass you’re playing with Ace, how does that impact your guitar playing when you return to the guitar, like with Accept or the Gene Simmons solo band?

It’s made my rhythm guitar playing stronger. At the time I volunteered to do bass with the Ace gig, I’d been really paying attention to my rhythm guitar playing more than the lead guitar playing, and so they kind of helped each other.

This fall, the Talismen are also going to be performing on the upcoming Kiss Kruise. Been on one of those before?

I’ve been on a few now. I played bass for (former Ted Nugent band singer) Derek St. Holmes on one of them, and then we played with Ace in 2018. This one is just us, Ryan, Jeremy and I doing our acoustic, kind of storytellers act. You normally do two or three shows on the boat, so we’re really looking forward to that and we’re super excited they extended the offer and we’re going to be able to be there and see the guys again.

And maybe Gene gets up and does a tune or two with The Talismen … ?

We’re not counting on that one, but anything can happen on that boat.

What’s is like being on a Kiss Kruise, on the open waters with all these Kiss superfans on board?

I thought I was a pretty big Kiss fan until I went on the Kiss Kruise. For Kiss fans it’s the number one coolest most fun thing you can do, without a doubt. It’s hard to explain. It’s like immersing yourself in Kiss language for you know four to five days. Everything is Kiss, Kiss, Kiss. Have you been on a cruise before, like any kind of cruise?

I have not been on a cruise before.

So when you when you leave your cabin, there’s, you know, background music or speakers in the hallways and music piped in. Well, all of that is Kiss. You can’t escape Kiss for like four or five days. [Laughs] And it’s such a good time.

It’s become as much about the fans who go on it as the band, because while there’s new people that go, a lot of the same people go every year, and so it’s become like a Kiss family reunion. People from all over the world. Most of the people on the boat are not American, the majority are from overseas and it’s so cool to meet all those people. And now with our Kiss connections, doing the Gene tours, worldwide, the boat several times, we know a lot of people on there too, so it’s great for us to catch up with all of them. I’m sure non Kiss fans are like, “That sounds absolutely horrible!” [Laughs] But it’s just a lot of fun. It’s Kiss, 24 seven.

Tell me about the COVID safety protocols for a tour bubble on a big tour like this Ace/Alice tour. What are you guys asked to do and not do?

I feel really good about our plan. Of course we’ve all heard about the tour and show postponements, but there have been some huge tours that haven’t had a hitch. Guns N’ Roses. I think the Black Crowes went off fine. So there’s some good things happening.

It starts with, we do have an official like CDC (Center for Disease Control) agent going with us. We all get tested a few times a week - some people daily, depending on their job and if they have to be in the audience. All those things are taken into consideration. No meet and greets. No backstage guests. So they’re really trying to limit all of the extraneous people that aren’t with the tour, keeping those numbers down as much as they can.

I’m probably going to even take it a step further, and not even go off campus, so to speak. I don’t plan on doing anything except get to the venue and stay in there. You know, do my workouts, then sit down with my computer and do work all day, then do the show and then go to the next city.

Because there’s also this pressure of like, what if you do test positive. And what happens then? Am I stuck in that city on my own dime? Does the entire tour stop if I test positive? I don’t want to be that guy and nobody wants to be that guy.

You’ve got to be vaxed on this tour, which I am, and I haven’t had (COVID) yet and have been healthy and careful and doing all the stuff. I will continue doing all that and more.

Before the tour, do you all go up to Ace’s home in New Jersey to rehearse?

Yeah, we’re heading up there Monday and we’re doing just that. He’s got a studio at his place, and I haven’t seen it in person yet but he has sent us photos and it looks fantastic. So we’re gonna jam there for a week. Alice has one show without us in Atlantic City and then we meet up with them in New Hampshire on the 18th, which is this coming Friday.

Do you stay at Ace’s place too during rehearsals?

We’re doing a hotel nearby. And we’re getting tested up there as well before the tour starts. As soon as we get off the plane in Newark, I’m pretty much considering starting my quarantine then. I’m probably just gonna, you know, get food and bring it to the hotel and not venture out a whole lot. We know a lot of the Alice band and crew too. and so it’s gonna be fun. If I have to be stuck in quarantine with a group people, that’s a pretty good group to be quarantined and stuck with.

https://www.al.com/life/2021/09/alabama ... ubble.html
Last edited by StillAlive on Thu Sep 16, 2021 6:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Goodwilltowardsall
Trained by Tommy!
Trained by Tommy!
Posts: 859
Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2018 6:18 pm

Re: Ace Frehley bassist: "I would definitely buy a ticket to that show"

Post by Goodwilltowardsall »

I would be surprised if he said fuck that shit.
User avatar
Tallbear13
2,000 Man, baby!
2,000 Man, baby!
Posts: 2424
Joined: Sun Apr 28, 2019 8:38 pm
Location: Catawba NC

Re: Ace Frehley bassist: "I would definitely buy a ticket to that show"

Post by Tallbear13 »

Oct 7th show in Charlotte for me
User avatar
southernkiss
Spends too much time FAQ'ing off!
Spends too much time FAQ'ing off!
Posts: 2664
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2020 8:41 pm
Location: Nashville, Tennessee

Re: Ace Frehley bassist: "I would definitely buy a ticket to that show"

Post by southernkiss »

I am going to the Nashville show. It is interesting that Ace appears to have completely changed the members of his band since I last saw him in 2016.
User avatar
Kissoff
Super Elite KISS Fan
Super Elite KISS Fan
Posts: 1880
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2021 5:59 pm

Re: Ace Frehley bassist: "I would definitely buy a ticket to that show"

Post by Kissoff »

Sorry but Ace's solos are hardly a song within a song.
StillAlive
Ready to sing Shock Me!
Ready to sing Shock Me!
Posts: 382
Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2021 7:46 am

Re: Ace Frehley bassist: "I would definitely buy a ticket to that show"

Post by StillAlive »

StillAlive wrote: Thu Sep 16, 2021 6:24 am we’re heading up there Monday...we’re gonna jam there for a week. Alice has one show without us in Atlantic City and then we meet up with them in New Hampshire on the 18th, which is this coming Friday.
Well at least Ace is rehearsing for a week with his band this time (instead of no rehearsing at all with the band).
They won't have to guess the setlist.
Can't hurt.