Gene Simmons wants to team up with one of ABBA's legendary hitmaker Benny Andersson to write some new music. Simmons, who proved decades ago that he's not shy about seeking out favorite songwriters to collaborate with, contacted Bob Dylan back in 1991 for a songwriting session. Ultimate Classic Rock translated an interview the Kiss co-founder gave to the Swedish newspaper Expressen, in which he explained, “There are a lot of dedicated Swedish musicians. Roxette and ABBA are two names that I’m thinking about. ABBA is phenomenally good. I thought so immediately. Their music is the most important music from Sweden. Everyone in the world likes ABBA — even Ozzy Osbourne.”
Fans were shocked when Simmons' 2004 solo set Assh*ole featured the Simmons/Dylan co-write “Waiting For The Morning Light,” which the pair wrote back in 1991. Simmons' recently released, massive collection — Gene Simmons: The Vault Experience — which celebrates his 50 years in music, closes with a 15-minute snippet of his songwriting session with Dylan.
- Simmons spoke about his 1991 collaboration with Dylan recalling, “I just called him, and a few days later we sat together and wrote songs together. He was amazing. After a little while it felt like we’d been friends for 20 years. I want to write songs with Benny Andersson from ABBA. I’m sure that, in a few hours at a hotel in Stockholm, we’d begin to shape something. You’d need an hour to find a feel for a song to begin with, me sitting with a guitar and Benny at a piano.”
- Gene Simmons, who's been a songwriter for 50 years, told us that style will never trump substance when it comes down to the art of crafting a song, explaining that the groove and the melody need to be there before any of the bells and whistles: “At the end of the day, you're going to be judged by — and I'm not the judge or jury, by any chance — of the people, for the people, by the people. It's less about being in a punk band, 'cause other than the (Sex) Pistols and (the) Clash, there ain't no other punk bands. I know, we talk about the Misfits. . . but we're talking about successful bands.”
- The Gene Simmons Band will next perform on July 15th at the “Masters Of Rock Festival” in Vizovice, Czech Republic.
- His next North American date will be on August 10th in Grand Forks, BC at “Cannafest” with Burton Cummings and Mark Farner's American Band.