Farewell Tour - 2000 - '01

Start Date: March 11, 2000

End Date: April 13, 2001

Shows: 142

Legs: 5

Countries: Australia, Canada, Japan, Jamaica, United States

Opening Acts: American Pearl, The Beautiful People, Ginger, Kings Of The Sun, Neve, Ted Nugent, The Screaming Jets, Serial Joe, Skid Row

Average Attendance: 10,329

Line Up: Paul Stanley, Ace Frehley, Gene Simmons, Peter Criss, Eric Singer

After the wildly successful reunion tour, the Psycho Circus tour was in the end a tour that could never deliver the same, ticket numbers were lower than two years before even though they did better overseas. Gene and Paul knew they had to do something to get the fans interested again and for months a rumor was going around that a farewell tour was in the works. This became reality when the band announced the tour on a press conference on February 14 on VH1, with a press release added:

"Legendary rock band KISS has announced today that they will hit the road for the last time beginning March 11 in Phoenix, AZ. The 'Farewell Tour,' presented by VH-1, will be the final opportunity to see the four original KISS members -- Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Ace Frehley and Peter Criss -- together on stage. KISS' 1996–97 worldwide Reunion tour featured the band back together and back in makeup and was the highest grossing tour of that year" (PR).

The internet helped with selling tickets and 70.000 tickets were sold before traditional outlets already started selling. Average attendance was good at the start of the tour, but started to go down dramatically near the end of the tour and it was clear that their main stream fame once again started to dwindle. To make sure the tour did not end in a commercial failure, they added a Japanese and Australian leg to the tour as both countries always loved seeing KISS return. And it worked in their favor, while at the end of the North America leg of the tour they would play in front of just 3,162 people, in Japan over at the Tokyo Dome they played in front of 41,895 Japanese KISS fans!

Farewell Tour Stage:

The Farewell Tour stage underwent some minor changes:

  • Staircases - Love Gun Tour stage staircases were added left and right of the drum riser.
  • Amplifier Stacks - Four rows of amplifier stacks were added to the stage
  • Video Screen - The 3D video screen was replaced with a giant LED video screen where Nocturne Productions was hired again to produce footage. Instead of Psycho Circus 3D footage on the screen, they now used computer generated animations during songs. For the song 'Psycho Circus' they used animated graphics pulled straight from the KISS PC game "KISS Psycho Circus: The Nightmare Child".
  • Lighting Rig Platform - Returning for this tour was the lighting platform used during the Animalize Tour but this time much larger, at the start of the tour, the whole band would descend down from the lighting rig on the platform after the KISS curtain dropped, later on in the tour only Peter would be high up with his drum riser while the band just played on the stage.

  • Pyro & Fireworks - Fireworks were used more than ever this tour and the opening song 'Detroit Rock City' had more pyrotechnics and fireworks going off than during a whole KISS show in 1974. As Paul said at the press conference. "The ultimate KISS show now, is really KISS on steroids."
  • Drum Solo - Peter dropped his drum solo halfway in the tour as he just could no longer take the strain on his arms.

  • Drum Riser Curtain - His drum riser cat curtain did return this tour but was hooked on only during the end of 'Black Diamond'.
  • T-shirt Cannon - During the Australian leg of the tour, Paul would use a pneumatic cannon to shoot T-shirts into the crowd but it was dropped after the second show in Melbourne because of insurance concerns.

The tension fell off the band's shoulders that they felt during the reunion tour of them living up to the fan's expectations that they were back together and were just like the band in 1977 was long gone by now. This showed on the stage where they were more loose, playful but also more sloppy, as Gene forgot the words to the songs more than often and looked like he didn't want to be there. Ace showed sloppy guitar work and at times incoherent vocals and Peter's drumming had deteriorated so much, that he got most of the blame for the sloppiness. Paul on the other hand had not received any criticism even though he had undergone two surgeries in two years (knee and a torn rotator cuff). Not much had changed in the show itself. One addition to the show was that the band played songs from the 80's and 90's that Ace and Peter never played before. Halfway down in the set during Ace's guitar solo, Ace now would do a medley of various KISS songs that were mostly written by Ace himself, like 'Hard Times', '2000 Man', or 'Parasite'. Later on in the tour the whole band would break into a medley in the encores.

Peter Criss's contract ended after the October 7th, 2000 show in Charleston, South Carolina and negotiations for a new contract would fall short. Peter during this tour would literally count down the days until the last show. He even brought along a sign with him that counted down the days, during the tour he even added a teardrop in his makeup to showcase how miserable he was at this point after contract negotiations once again grounded to a halt. Eventually Peter did not return for the Japanese and Australian leg of the tour and Eric Singer was brought in to take his place on his drum stool. No thought of him having his own character even came up and Eric Singer became the Catman in KISS.

Eric on the drums improved the quality of the show during the Australian and Japanese tour, as Peter no longer dragged down the tempo (deliberately) during the shows and the new energy from Eric gave the band a kick in the ass as well. Eric would have a drum solo during 'God Of Thunder' where he used drumsticks with a flame effect, a effect he previously used when he toured with Brian May and Alice Cooper on the Brutal Planet Tour in 2000. He was not allowed to use it during the Japanese leg because they were a "fire hazard" even though Gene would breath fire. Paul and Gene took notice from the new energy in the band and eventually saw Ace as the last obstacle and Ace played his final KISS show at the Gold Coast in Australia. But his last performance with KISS, was at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City performing 'Rock And Roll All Nite'. Not soon after, Tommy Thayer became the Spaceman to perform with the band at a private event in Jamaica on March 6, 2002 for a rich Russian oligarch's birthday party. 

     Stage Props:

  • Pre-Show "hum"
  • Giant KISS Logo Curtain Before Show
  • Two Animated KISS Logos
  • Gene Spitting Blood
  • Gene Breathing Fire
  • Gene Flying
  • Paul Flying
  • Ace Smoking, Shooting, Flying Guitar
  • Ace's UFO Guitar
  • Fire Engine Lights
  • Fire Engine Siren
  • Platform Risers
  • Lighting Rig Platform
  • Dry Ice Smoke
  • Flash Pots
  • Bombs
  • Fireworks
  • Pyrotechnics
  • Drum Riser
  • Confetti
  • Giant Video Screen
  • Amplifier Stacks
  • KISS Army Banners
  • Flamethrowers (Gas Based)
  • Paul Smashing Guitar
  • Paul's T-shirt Cannon
  • Eric's Flaming Drum Sticks

Ace playing the encores in a KISS t-shirt in the August summer heat in St.Louis.

Typical Setlist:

01. 'Detroit Rock City'
02. 'Deuce'
03. 'Shout It Out Loud
04. 'I Love It Loud'
05. 'Shock Me'

06. 'Firehouse'

07. 'Do You Love Me?'
08. 'Psycho Circus'

09. 'Calling Dr. Love'

10. 'Let Me Go, Rock N' Roll'

11. '2,000 Man'

12. 'Heaven's On Fire'

13. 'Lick It Up'

14. 'God Of Thunder'

15. 'Cold Gin'

16. '100,000 Years'

17. 'Love Gun'

18. 'Black Diamond'


19. 'Beth' or

20. 'I Was Made For Lovin' You'

21. 'Rock And Roll All Nite'

Special Shows / Happenings:

- Blockbuster Desert Sky Pavilion, Phoenix, AZ, March 11, 2000 -

VH1 webcast a part of the show and broadcast the opening of the show.

- Arrowhead Pond, Anaheim, CA, March 18, 2000 -

This show was full of bad luck, first Gene's flying rig malfunctioned causing Gene to be suspended a few feet above the stage and he had to be rescued by the crew. Next was Paul's flying rig malfunctioning while he was right above the audience. After the crew rescued a tired Paul after a few minutes and he was back on the main stage, his guitar refused to work after they restarted into 'Love Gun', when his guitar tech came to retrieve his guitar, he even forgot to bring a new one!

- Oakland Arena, Oakland, CA, March 23, 2000 -

A 36 year old KISS fan fell from 100 feet from the third tier from a concrete retaining wall in the Oakland Arena and died in the hospital.

- TECO Arena, Ft. Meyers, FL, April 9, 2000 -

Gene and Paul's flying rigs once again malfunctioned and a flamethrower scorched a piece of the lighting rig that left the lights smoldering.

- Bi-Lo - Center, Greenville, SC, April 21, 2000 -

After a show was over, the band would thank the city on the main screen with a (example) text: "Thank You Detroit!". Screen operator John Bestwick of Nocturne was in charge of changing the screen's text every night, as touring so much can make you forget in what town you are at that moment he accidentally put in the text "Thank You Greenfield!" This was only seen on the screen for a second, but the damage was already done and the media still noticed it and blew it out of proportion so much that the band decided to send a signed letter to the local newspaper:

"To our friends in Greenville: We want to apologize to our fans in Greenville for a mistake made by a video technician who erroneously referred to your city as 'Greenfield' at the end of our show Saturday night. It has always been KISS' mission to give you the greatest rock and roll show and to treat you with the respect you deserve."

- Gund Arena, Cleveland, OH, May 6, 2000 -

Ace added a third rocket to his guitar, the first two would be shot at bags of confetti hanging in the lighting rig and the third one was shot over the crowd.

- Allstate Arena, Chicago, IL, May 11, 2000 -

This concert at the Allstate Arena in Chicago was cyber-cast on the internet on Pepsi's website.

- Marcus Amphitheatre, Milwaukee, WI, May 19, 2000 -

The main video screen was plagued with electrical issues because of a bad power source in Milwaukee. This caused the main video screen to turn off and on during the first two songs and the crew eventually had to turn the screen off for the rest of the show. This in return angered Gene who was pissed that the crowd did not see him on the stage doing his Demon shtick. Bob Brigham of Nocturne who was in charge of the screen, happened to be sharing a ride with Gene from and to the hotel, Bob encountered a fan from the show at a gas station and asked if he was at the show, he replied with that he did and that it was the best KISS show he had ever seen, upon hearing this he asked to repeat that for Gene in the car, after the fan repeated the line and realized it was Gene, Gene ended up signing 10 autographs for the fan and his family. Hearing the fan's reaction perked up Gene's mood for the rest of the car ride! During the show Paul's flying rig once again malfunctioned.

- Tweeter Centar, Boston, MA, June 13, 2000 -

Paul and Ace had a verbal disagreement on stage before '2,000 Man', when Ace returned to the stage after changing his guitar Ace said:

"That's why we love Paul! He's Mr. Friendly!"

- Continental Airlines Arena, East Rutherford, NJ, June 27, 2000 -

This show was professionally recorded in High Definition by NHK with six cameras for a special pay per view edition of the show. Skid Row bassist Dave Sabo had a Pro Tools System and seeing it was his system, he and John Bestwick of Nocturne would edit the show together for five weeks straight, the original cut was in widescreen but this was not accepted by Showtime who was to air the PPV and they had to convert the show to the 4:3 format.

- Skyreach Center, Edmonton, AB, Canada, July 20, 2000 -

Due to severe storms and flooding in the area, the Skyreach Centre was running on reserve power because of power outages in the area.

- Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, Irvine, CA, August 11, 2000 -

Ace missed his airplane, according to Ace in his memoir "No Regrets", he had to deal with a dead deer in his pool. Paul's memoir "Face The Music" stated that the limo driver was waiting for hours in front of Ace's house and Ace refused to come outside making excuses to Tommy Thayer who managed to reach him by phone. Ace managed to catch a flight the next day, but now the plane had a delay! Ace had to be brought to the venue via helicopter after the plane landed. When Ace arrived, Tommy Thayer was already in makeup and costume ready to take the stage as they thought he would never make it. Gene and Ace had a custom fit Spaceman costume made for Tommy as a insurance policy if Ace did not make a show as he was a chronic late arriver. Ace arrived 20 minutes before showtime so the band had to delay the show for a hour so he could apply his makeup, when Ace walked into the locker room, he seemed surprised by Tommy in full makeup and costume but showed no remorse.

- Mississippi Coliseum, Jackson, MS, August 19, 2000 -

Ace was invited by his cousin Bill, to come over for a barbecue, Bill had a gun collection and Ace, Bill and friends ended up shooting guns on Bill's 10 acre property. For some reason Ace decided to use a Uzi of all weapons to have fun with. After shooting off many rounds with the weapon, the weapon jammed but Ace kept on pressing the trigger and the weapon blew up and send bullet shrapnel's right in his chest. Ace who was obviously already drunk did not even notice anything from the shrapnel embedded under his skin of his chest until his cousin Bill noted why there was blood all over his shirt. Even though Bill wanted to take him to a hospital, Ace wanted to go to his hotel and take a nap. Later he woke up feeling disoriented and nauseous, Ace called the front desk and probably should have picked better words as he stated he got shot! Before he knew it, Ace's room was flooded with emergency personnel and police. Doc McGhee, KISS's manager, called in for an ambulance to take Ace to the hospital to get treatment. Bullet fragments were removed but some were left behind as they could not get them removed and he was send home with antibiotics and painkillers and he played the show next night at Jackson, MS. When Ace showed up at the show, the rest of the band did not seem concerned at all on what happened with Ace. This was a clear rock star case of "Ace being Ace".

- Mohegan Sun Casino, Uncasville, CT, October 3, 2000 -

Sal Governale, known as "Sal The Stockbroker" for his appearances at Howard Stern's radio show, was apparently doing "facial gestures" towards Gene from the front row, after being warned by security staff for a third time he was escorted out of the building and the entire event was played up on Howard Stern's show.

- New Charlotte Coliseum, Charlotte, NC, October 6, 2000 -

A fan threw blue roses on the stage while Peter was performing 'Beth', blue roses were the favorite of Peter's mother who passed away a few years prior. Peter was touched by the gesture and choked up when he thanked the fan while singing at the same time.

North Charleston Coliseum, Charleston, SC, October 7, 2000

This was the last show of the tour, a few shows earlier, Peter was told by Ace, that he was making more money than Peter and even got a cut from the merchandise. This pissed Peter off even more as he was negotiating for months to get a even cut with the rest of the band. Peter started adding a teardrop to his makeup because he felt screwed over. At the Charleston show, Peter destroyed his drum kit to send a statement or just to vent his anger. According to Peter in his memoir "Makeup to Breakup", Paul walked backstage and probably walked straight to a car waiting as Peter did not even see him, Gene or Ace when he walked backstage to remove his makeup. Oddly enough, this footage ended up on Kissology 3 as bonus footage after the credits of the Last KISS concert.

- Yokohama Arena, Yokohama, Japan, March 9, 2001 -

This was Eric Singer's first KISS show in the Catman makeup

Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, Australia, April 5th, 2001

During the medley, Gene was clearly getting annoyed at Ace playing unrehearsed songs. Gene is well known to not remember his lyrics or the music and eventually after they played a piece of 'She', Gene getting annoyed said into the microphone "What does the Ace Frehley band wanna do next?" Ace instantly started playing into 'Rocket Ride' with an emotionless expression on his face pissing Gene off even more. A security guard stated that later on he heard Gene backstage asking Ace: "What the fuck was that man!?" Ace stood up out of his chair and said "Rock and roll baby!!"

- Carrara Stadium, Gold Coast, Australia, April 13, 2001 -

The last show with Ace Frehley as the Spaceman. According to Ace in "No Regrets", he brought a girlfriend into the dressing room and punched Tommy Thayer! A rule was set that no girlfriend or wife was allowed in the dressing room. Gene's girlfriend Shannon Tweed and Paul's back than wife Pam, were regulars in the dressing room and Ace never said anything about it, Ace's girlfriend asked if she could come inside and seeing everyone was already gone, Ace invited her in. Tommy Thayer apparently saw this and made him aware of the rule, Ace in return stated that everyone was already gone and it was the last show anyway. Tommy stood by the rule like some kind of locker room security guard, Ace walked over to him and punched him right on the jaw, Tommy got knocked on his ass more shocked than hurt. Later on in the jet, Ace apologized to Tommy but he seemed according to Ace, reluctant to accept his apology.

Tickets, Ace's guitar pick, and backstage passes

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