Hot In The Shade Tour - 1990

Start Date: March 11, 1990

End Date: November 9, 1990

Shows: 124

Legs: 1

Countries: Canada, United States

Headlining Acts: Whitesnake

Opening Acts: Danger Danger, Downtown Bruno, Faster Pussycat, The Good Rats, Joe Lynn Turner, Little Caesar, The Red & The Black, Saraya, Shake City, Slaughter, Vixen, Winger

Average Attendance: 6,589

Line Up: Paul Stanley, Bruce Kulick, Gene Simmons, Eric Carr

For 'Hot In The Shade' the band wanted to leave the pop rock sound from Crazy Nights and return once again more to their old roots, together with Vini Poncia ('Dynasty', 'Unmasked'). Gene started recording with Eric and with a future KISS member, Tommy Thayer, while Paul worked on his demo's together with Bruce and another future KISS member, Eric Singer! Promoters were not interested in a tour, but after 'Forever' became a top 10 hit promoters changed their minds and a tour was scheduled!

The show did see the loss of a effect that had been with the band since 1974, Gene no longer breathed fire in this tour. Paul also did no longer smash his guitar. The band seemed rejuvenated after their short touring break in 1989 (even though Paul did a solo tour) and after seeing the reaction of fans wanting to hear more older songs, more of them were added, while they played maybe five songs from their 70's era during the Crazy Nights Tour, they now played 13 in a 22 song show!

 - “When we went on tour, we rallied, we began to embrace our history.

We would literally hit every period of the band, and we did it proudly.”

- Paul Stanley -

Read More: How Kiss Reclaimed Their Legacy on the 'Hot in the Shade' Tour |

Hot In The Shade Tour Stage:

The stage was designed by Robert Roth and Jim Chapman and was constructed at Tait Towers:

  • Leon The Sphinx - The stage would eventually be dominated by one guy, and he was nicknamed "Leon The Sphinx", the same sphinx as seen on the cover of the Hot In The Shade album, based on the Great Sphinx of Giza. This prop would play a big role during the concert, as his mouth would be used to make the band do its entrance, his eyes would shoot rockets, Leon would lower during 'Detroit Rock City' showing a KISS logo and he even would sing during 'God Of Thunder'! (voiced by Gary Corbett, their hidden keyboard player.)

  • KISS Logo - A huge metallic KISS logo would be shown behind Leon after he lowered down before the first encore. This same logo would return for the KISS My Ass Tour.

  • Laser Show - The shows were once again full of fireworks and light effects, and a effect that could not have been realized for the Dynasty tour: lasers! Steve Jander and his Dallas-based Showlasers Inc. designed all the laser effects and sequences. they were mostly used when KISS entered the stage through Leon's mouth and during Eric's drum solo. Who were not present during the start of the tour, Eric was very disappointed about this and did not talk to Paul for two months! But eventually he got his wish and created one excellent drum solo containing light (the light would shine through his two kick drums) and laser effects and his electronic drum pads.

  • Costumes - Costumes wise it was similar to the Crazy Nights Tour, Gene was still clad in black leather and the rest of the band also donned more black leather than usual. Paul's favorite piece to wear this tour were colorful patterned vests that were in style in the early 90's.

  • Mirror Ball - A mirror ball returned to the stage as the band had in the 70's for the encores above the stage.

  • Ramps - Also added were two ramps on each side of the stage that Bruce, Gene and Paul would play on.

  • Drum Solo - Eric would have his drum solo like in the old KISS days during 'God Of Thunder', after his solo was finished, Leon's mouth would open and sing the verse! This visual "singing" effect was achieved by sending the distorted vocals of Corbett's mic as a oscilloscope readout on a small screen.

The oscilloscope effect in Leon's mouth and the big metallic KISS logo

The tour would end with a bang at Madison Square Garden, especially for this show fireworks were even placed on the ceiling of the Garden, but this show was not only the last show for this tour, but also for Eric Carr, in February 1991, Eric was diagnosed with a extremely rare form of heart cancer, after surgery and aggressive treatment his cancer went into remission and his health improved. But days later Carr eventually passed away because of a brain hemorrhage on November 24, 1991.

Eric's death sadly got overshadowed by the death of Freddie Mercury of Queen who also passed away on that day. Rolling Stone magazine, who always had a distaste for KISS, even choose to ignore Eric's death even though even CNN reported on his death. Normally ignoring their ignorance, Paul this time decided to not ignore them and send them a letter that later would be printed in a following issue of Rolling Stone.

- R.I.P Eric Carr -

     Stage Props:

  • Pre-Show "hum"
  • Drum riser
  • Fireworks
  • Flash Pots
  • Flamethrowers
  • Pyrotechnics
  • Leon The Sphinx
  • Bombs
  • Dry Ice Smoke
  • Laser Show
  • Mirror Ball
  • KISS Logo

Gene in his HITS gear

Typical Setlist:

01. 'I Stole Your Love'
02. 'Deuce'
03. 'Heaven's On Fire'
04. 'Crazy Crazy Nights'
05. 'Black Diamond'

06. 'Shout It Out Loud'

07. 'Strutter'

08. 'Calling Dr. Love'
09. 'Rise To It'

10. 'Fits Like A Glove'

11. 'Lick It Up'

12. 'God Of Thunder'

13. 'Forever'

14. 'Hide Your Heart'

15. 'Cold Gin'

16. 'Tears Are Falling'

17. 'I Live It Loud'

18. 'Love Gun'


19. 'Detroit Rock City'

20. 'I Want You'

21. 'Rock And Roll All Nite'

Special Shows / Happenings:

- West Beach Pocket Park #1, Galveston, TX. March 11, 1990 -

The opening show of the tour was not the best one KISS ever had, it was more a (free) mini concert on a beach part of a promotion by a radio station, the crowd,

more drunk than sober, threw debris on the stage during the entire show. There even was a wet bikini contest prior to the show.

- Country Club, Reseda, CA, April 25, 1990 -

This was the first and only show Eric performed his song 'Little Caesar' and marks the second and last live performance of 'Betrayed'.

- The Palace of Auburn Hills, Detroit, MI, May 18, 1990 -

This show was professionally recorded on video by the in house crew what is (together with the October 14th show at Auburn Hills) the only full professionally

recorded Hot In The Shade Tour show available and the October 14th show ended up on the Kissology 2 DVD set.

- C.N.E. Stadium, TO, Canada, June 15, 1990 -

The headliner, Whitesnake didn't want KISS to use their pyro, Paul, responded while on stage: "People, the headliners won't let us use our pyro,

but we're going to rock your ass anyway and fuck him." David Cloverdale, front man for Whitesnake eventually put KISS down when they had to perform.

- Providence Civic Center, Providence, RI, June 20, 1990 -

This show marks the return of 'I Was Made For Lovin' You' for the first time in the US since 1979, with thanks to Larry Mazer (KISS's manager in 1990).

The band refused at first to add it to the set list but he eventually managed to convince them. When they started playing, the place went nuts.

- Civic Center, Springfield, MA, July 3, 1990 -

While Paul was sleeping in the back of his limousine, the car got struck by another vehicle and both Paul and his driver wound up under the dashboard

following a 200 foot (70 meters) skid during which the limo knocked over a road light, crossed an embankment, and finally crashed into an iron gate. Paul had

to have fourteen x-rays and the July 5 show at New Haven, Connecticut had to be postponed due to Paul's injuries.

- City Island, Harrisburg, PA, July 8, 1990 -

Eric performed briefly with opening band "Little Caesar" seeing this was their last show with KISS on the tour.

- Long Beach Arena, Long Beach, CA, September 14, 1990 -

Vibrations from the pyrotechnics knocked some tiles off the back wall during 'Detroit Rock City'.

Mark St. John was in attendance.

- War Memorial Coliseum, Johnstown, PA, October 10, 1990 -

Paul ran into guardrail on stage and cracked a couple of ribs which caused the band to cancel three shows, this freak accident ironically

caused more delay to the tour than his car accident on July 3rd.

Paul performing with his injury during the October 27th, New Haven, CT show.

Photo by: Andrew Allin

Civic Center, Charleston, WV, November 1, 1990 -

Even though Paul still had his rib injury, he still choose to play, a quote from Michael Lipton, writer for the Charleston Gazette:

"Stanley's stage movements did not appear to be hampered by his injuries, but backstage it was a different story. Four medical personnel, including two physical therapists and a chiropractor, administered heat massages and sonic treatments before the show. After the band's Grateful Dead length set, Stanley was helped into the bus."

- Madison Square Garden, New York City, NY, November 9, 1990 -

This show marked Eric Carr's last performance with KISS. Especially for this show, pyrotechnic packs were installed on the ceiling of Madison Square Garden above the audience for the grand finale. Gene even brought out hidden keyboard player Gary Corbett out on the stage at the end for everyone to finally see him. The tour eventually made them a $1 million dollar profit making it their most profitable tour in over a decade.

The last show at the Garden

Crew backstage passes

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