Friday, January 22, 2010

Gene Simmons' Signature Bass

By Phyllis Pollack

If you have an axe to grind with the band Kiss, this is the time to do it. Kiss bassist Gene Simmons has revealed that fans can now purchase a Limited Edition, personally signed version of the Gene Simmons Axe Bass. No surprise, the bass is shaped like an axe. For those who want to show off their chops with this axe, of for those who just want to own this collectors item, there are two models of the bass.

"I know that people will buy this," Simmons told

One of the two models is a high-end version that is limited in number, which sells at $5000.00 each. It is available now through a special website. Obviously a collector's item for Kiss fans, the instrument comes with an elaborate hard-shell case that has Simmons' face displayed on it in full Demon make-up, surrounded by flames.

He said fans can go to a Gene Simmons website to buy one.

Simmons, whose band has been playing together and releasing music for 35 years, also stated that he personally designed the bass, as well as the case. Each bass comes with a certificate of authenticity.

A far less expensive Cort replica, the GS-AXE-2 will be made available in guitar stores at around $500.00, starting on February 1, 2010.

The GS-AXE-@ bass was displayed for the first time ever today at the NAMM Trade Show, by Simmons, himself. Simmons offered a peek at one of the basses this morning at the National Association of Music Merchandisers NAMM) trade show at the Anaheim Convention Center.

The Kiss icon was a special guest at the Exclusive Product Preview Day, which highlighted a myriad of new products for musicians at the trade show held as a confab for music instrument and music product companies. NAMM is a non-profit organization that integrates relationships between companies and consumers, and strengthens the $17 billion international musical instruments and products industry. The convention this week marks the 108th trade show that has been held by NAMM.

Orders for retailers will be accepted at the NAMM Show. Orders will ship in March.

Simmons told that each one of the bass guitars was hand made by only one individual. "It takes about a month to make one," he said, adding, "The wood is from Thailand. The weight has to do with the thickness. The fact it is so solid helps make it superior. It gives the bass its resonance." He added, "Hold this bass. You can feel that thickness."

While most guitars are made with the body and the neckpiece as separate pieces that are connected, Simmons' bass is made in one piece. Simmons says doing this gives it better sound. "Hold this," Simmons told "You can feel how solid this is."

The Cort GS-AXE-2 bass will include a padded bag with Simmons' face on it. It will have a 34 inch scale, a hard maple neck, rosewood fretboard, die cast tuners and Might Mite pickups.

Simmons got the name for the bass from the term "axe" that refers to instruments. He has owned the trademark to the word "axe" for almost three decades.

Simmons said he decided to do this because so many fans have requested a bass like the one he plays. Says Simmons, "I owe the fans everything, because they made my life possible."

For those who want to Kiss some Axe, this is the perfect vehicle.

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