The Story Starts Here -- by Jim
In 1973 the Cadillac High School Vikings football team finished undefeated with a perfect 9-0
record. Spirits were soaring as the 1974 season began, but the Vikings lost the first two games of the
season. We coaches knew that the team was talented, but we also knew that the pressure of living up
to the accomplishments of the previous year were causing the team to play below their abilities. We were
looking for something to lighten the atmosphere and playing Rock and Roll in the locker room before practices
and games was suggested. As the resident
Rock and Roll expert, head coach Dave Brines gave me the task of picking the music. I chose a new and
outrageous band -- KISS. They were wild, bold, and loud. Plus, their name invoked an old footbsall credo --
Keep It Simple Stupid. It was a match that was meant to be. The 1974 team won its final seven games with KISS
as an inspiration. The band heard about what we were doing and instantly adopted the Vikings as their team.
Then in October of 1975 the unbelievable happened, KISS came to Cadillac High School and played a homecoming
concert in the high school gym. It's an event that has become a cornerstone of KISStory and a legendary
event in Rock and Roll. The story has persevered throughout the years. This website presents photos,
documents, videos, articles, unique features, and current news about the KISS visit.
Get a very cool CAD sticker for your car or guitar.
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SPECIAL PROGRAM NOTE --
"Under The Influence" - on CBC Radio
In the feature segment, it's an amazing story from the book, Nothin' To Lose:
The Making Of Kiss (1972-1975). Kiss takes a tour detour in 1975 to spend the day with the students at Cadillac
High School in Michigan - and that legendary visit not only shows how much Kiss loved their fans, but it helps put
Kiss on the map with music journalists across North America. It's a remarkable story.
Under the Influence airs on Monday April 14th at 11:30am on CBC Radio. Stream
the show or download the free podcast here: http://www.cbc.ca/undertheinfluence/season-3/2014/04/12/terrys-bookshelf-1/
The "Cadillac High" Movie
A project is in the works for a movie about the
KISS visit to Cadillac. This is by no means a done deal, but here are some details as reported in the media.
Included is a column I wrote for the Cadillac News. Stay tuned
for more details as they come available.
My Picture With
I've done hundreds of newspaper, television,
and radio interviews about the KISS visit to Cadillac. Plus, I've retold the story to thousands of KISS fans
in personal meetings, phone calls, and e-mails. One of the most asked questions has always been, "May I have a
picture of you and the band?" Sadly, I've never been able to
fill those requests because, as odd as this sounds, no such photo exists. With all that went on in 1975
getting my picture taken with KISS was overlooked. In the 35 years since, the opportunity just never presented
itself. On September 11, 2010 KISS was at DTE Energy Theater outside
of Detroit. Through the kind efforts of McGhee Entertainment the Michigan-based members of my family were all
treated to the concert, all-access passes, and pictures with the band. Upon seeing me Paul exclaimed: "Jim, you look exactly the same. You haven't changed at
all." When I attempted to reintroduce myself to Gene he stopped me
immediately. "I know who you are, " he said. About Cadillac he added, "That's become a wonderful story, hasn't
it." The occasion was also my 7 year-old grand daughter's first KISS
concert. Paul called her "Sweetie" and Gene gave her a fist bump and told her she had a nice
smile. It was a wonderful evening, reinforcing that KISS has never
forgotten Cadillac. Thanks to the entire band and Melissa Madden at McGhee, I now have my picture.
-- Jim Neff --
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