KISS Drummer Didn't Know Drugs Were Addictive

By Chrisanne Grise 12/10/12

Peter Criss says he did drugs with the band every night, back when "everyone was doing it."

Criss "had no clue" of the dangers. Photo via

Peter Criss, the founding drummer of legendary rock band KISS, says he developed a cocaine habit in the 1970s when “everyone [around him] was doing it,” but he was completely unaware of the risks involved. “I had no clue the danger of addiction,” he says. “I’m doing it with my manager, I’m doing it with my lawyers, I’m doing it with my business managers. So, to me, it was cool…I figured, well, if lawyers were doing it and business managers and record presidents, that [there] must be no downfall to this. And, sure enough, of course there is.” The drummer recently released a memoir titled Makeup to Breakup, which debuted #7 on the New York Times bestseller list, sparking competition with his former bandmates. “I’m proud I outsold Gene [Simmons]’s book and [guitarist] Ace [Frehley]‘s book, which made me feel pretty good,” he says, "…one book was about taking a lot of drugs and having parties, and the other book was how many women [Gene] slept with, but my book seems to talk about music." Although there is still some tension between Criss and his former bandmates, he says he would be open to a reunion given the right circumstances. “Let’s face it, if we really were offered…one great night at Yankee Stadium…it’d be pretty hard [to] say no to that,” he says. “Sometimes I really miss the greasepaint and the roar of the crowd.”

Please read our comment policy. - The Fix
Chrisanne Grise.jpeg

Chrisanne Grise is a multimedia journalist specializing in health/fitness, lifestyle, travel, bridal, and music. Her work has appeared in print and online for publications such as Martha Stewart Weddings, Parents, FitnessMagazine, Fisher Price, Bridal Guide, Scholastic's Choices,,, and more. She is the Senior Editor at The New York Times Upfront. Follow her on Linkedin and Twitter.