Freedom To Rock Tour - 2016

Start Date: July 16, 2016

End Date: November 9, 2016

Shows: 44

Legs: 1

Countries: Canada, Mexico, United States

Opening Acts: Aaron Watson, Caleb Johnson, The Dead Daisies, Moist, The Cult, The R Factor.

Average Attendance: 6,550

Line Up: Paul Stanley, Tommy Thayer, Gene Simmons, Eric Singer

After the 40th Anniversary Tour concluded, no real announcements for a new tour would be made and beside some charity events and a performance for the L.A KISS season ticket holders, no summer tour was not announced, after Paul Stanley had surgery done because of a torn bicep tendon, he stated he would be ready to rock by summer time. In April KISS would announce their "Freedom To Rock" tour celebrating their freedom to celebrate themselves and what they stood for those 40 years.

Next to that, the patriotism for this tour came from that KISS partnered with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's "Hiring Our Heroes" program. Gene Simmons: "We have a deal with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and in every single one of the cities we're giving vets jobs, which means they're getting paid ... We do give vets jobs because it's the least we could do. They rightfully take their place along with our road crew and put on the greatest show on Earth." Next to the "Hiring Our Heroes" program, KISS would also donate to the charity at each show and would bring a tribute to the troops as well where they recite The Pledge Of Allegiance and played the 'Star-Spangled Banner' with servicemen and people of the charity. When playing in Canada, they would perform 'Oh, Canada'. Even though attendance figures were lower than the previous tour, the tour did a total overall gross of $12 million dollars. And that is not even including merchandise figures.

The setlist changed somewhat for this tour, no longer were any songs from 'Sonic Boom' or 'Monster' present. One song ended up on the setlist for the entire tour, that almost did not see any performances since 1976, and that would be 'Flaming Youth' from "Destroyer". Strangely enough, no tour book was released for this tour even though the patriotic theme was perfect for one.

“The Freedom to Rock tour is a big, awesome show, and the band is big and awesome. Anybody can pattern their show on what we've done in the past, but you'll never be us. That's why we're KISS, and that's why we've been around 40 years. KISS has multi-generational appeal because KISS has an appeal that's timeless. KISS isn't only about music. It's about an attitude, it's about a way of life and it's about a philosophy of approaching life. The idea of going for what you believe in and not stopping until you achieve or attain it. It's one of the great thrills and sources of satisfaction to see somebody who's brought their mother or father to a show and see these people really enjoying it and getting it." - Paul Stanley on the Freedom To Rock Tour

The Freedom To Rock Tour Stage

Not much changed when it came to the show and the stage, the Freedom To Rock Tour show was basically the same as the 40th Anniversary tour/stage with minor changes. The stage was scaled back a bit as they would tour mostly in smaller venues like state fairs and convention centers.

The Freedom To Rock Tour Stage:

  • Riser Table - Right in the center of the stage, a giant riser table resembling a giant metallic pool table, that would have fire bellow from below it. It was used when the band descended down from the opening of the show and during the Who's 'Won't Get Fooled Again' section during 'Lick It Up' by Tommy and Paul.
  • Video Screen Towers - The four light towers in front of the video screen were now removed.
  • KISS Army Banners - To compensate for the smaller stage, the two KISS Army Banners would be hung semi sideways to give a more open spacious look to the sides of the stage.
  • Guitar Solo - Tommy's guitar solo returned completely with him shooting rockets, strangely enough, he did not sing his own two songs from "Sonic Boom" or "Monster", but instead he sang'Shock Me'. Eric did not join Tommy this time during his solo. Tommy would also shoot three arrows at the end of 'Lick It Up'.
  • Patriotic Guitars - Both Gene and Paul had a guitar with an American flag painted on it to fit with the patriotic theme of the show. Gene had his classic Axe bass painted and Paul a Ibanez Iceman.
  • Flamethrowers - The four directional flamethrowers were replaced somewhere in the tour with standard flamethrowers again. It's hard to pinpoint out where, as at one moment (Tucson, July 4th show), they even used both style flamethrowers!
  • Fire Engine Siren/Lights -As 'Firehouse' was not on the setlist, there were no real fire engine lights used, normal stage lights simulated a fire engine light after Gene would spit fire after 'War Machine', a fire engine siren was still used.

     Stage Props:

  • Pre-Show "hum"
  • Fire Engine Siren
  • Giant KISS Logo Curtain Before Show
  • Video Screens
  • Video Lighting Rig Screens
  • Gene Spitting Blood
  • Gene Breathing Fire
  • Flash Pots
  • Gene Flying
  • Paul Flying
  • Tommy's Guitar Solo
  • Tommy's Shooting Rocket Guitar
  • Eric's LED Light Drum Kit
  • Riser Cranes
  • Riser Table
  • Dry Ice Smoke
  • KISS Army Banners
  • Four Directional Flamethrowers
  • Normal Flamethrowers (later in tour)
  • Laser Show
  • Bombs
  • Fireworks
  • Pyrotechnics
  • Drum Riser
  • Flamethrowers
  • Confetti
  • Paul Smashing Guitar

Eric Singer being high and dry on his drum riser

Typical Setlist:

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

06. 'Flaming Youth'

07. 'God Of Thunder'
08. 'Psycho Circus'

09. 'Shock Me'

10. 'Cold Gin'

11. 'Lick It Up'

12. 'War Machine'

13. 'Love Gun'

14. 'Black Diamond'


15. 'Beth'

16. 'The Star-Spangled Banner'

17. 'Rock And Roll All Nite'

Special Shows / Happenings:

Casino Del Sol Resort, Tucson, AZ, July 4, 2016

The first show of the tour, KISS received the key to the city from the mayor of Tucson during the show and veterans were brought onto the stage for the Pledge of Allegiance.

-  Brick Breeden Fieldhouse, Bozeman, MT, July 16, 2016 -

During 'Rock And Roll All Nite', Gene took a nasty fall when he stepped backwards towards his microphone and tripped over the riser cranes,

because of his platform boots, he needed help getting up again.

- Amsoil Arena, Duluth, MN, August 3, 2016 -

There was so much smoke in the venue from KISS's pyrotechnics, that the venue's fire alarm got activated.

This was also KISS's first show in Duluth since 1990.

- Dow Event Center, Saginaw, MI, August 19, 2016 -

Because of a severe rain storm, the show was delayed for a hour.

-  BMO Harris Bank Center, Rockford, IL, August 20, 2016 -

During 'Rock And Roll All Nite' Cheap Trick's Rick Nielsen joined the band on stage playing on one of Paul Stanley's purple Ibanez Iceman's.

- Huntington Center, Toledo, OH, August 24, 2016 -

Before the KISS show, right in the middle of opening act, The Dead Daisies, a tornado warning was issued for the region.

This delayed the show until the tornado warning was lifted at 8:30 pm.

Stardust Theater, Norwegian Pearl @ Sea, November 6, 2016

On KISS Kruise VI, the band would don "Creatures Of The Night" era costumes and a re-creation of the Creatures tour stage was build including the tank drum turret! Eric Singer did wear Eric Carr's 1982 costume, but still wore the Catman makeup. Tommy wore Ace's Elder era costume that Ace used on the "Creatures Of The Night" promotional tour in 1982.

For the upcoming KISSworld tour, the band would continue using the Creatures era costumes.

Backstage pass

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