Gene Simmons Hits Back at N.W.A

Gene Simmons
Michael Tullberg/Getty Images

Gene Simmons attends the 24th annual Elton John AIDS Foundation's Oscar viewing party on Feb. 28, 2016 in West Hollywood, Calif.  

Gene Simmons has never been short of an opinion or eight. And his ponderings don’t always sit smoothly with Kiss’ fans or the wider artist community. There’ve been comments on folks with mental health issues (“Have some dignity and jump”), Donald Trump (“He is the truest political animal I've ever seen onstage”) and his musing that "rap will die."  

That last comment, which he fleshed out for Rolling Stone ("I am looking forward to the death of hip-hop") naturally got a rise out of some rappers.

N.W.A Shuts Down Gene Simmons During Rock Hall Induction Speech

N.W.A. founding member Ice Cube hit out in an interview with the New York Times ahead of the group's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame class of 2016. “I respect Gene Simmons, but I think he’s wrong on this because rock ‘n’ roll is not an instrument and it’s not singing,” he said. “Rock ‘n’ roll is a spirit. N.W.A is probably more rock ‘n’ roll than a lot of the people that he thinks belong there over hip-hop. We had the same spirit as punk rock, the same as the blues.”

When N.W.A took the podium on Friday (April 8) at the Rock Hall induction ceremony, MC Ren served one back at Simmons. "I want to say to Mr. Gene Simmons that hip-hop is here forever," he said. "We're supposed to be here."

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It hasn’t taken long for Simmons to respond. "Let me know when Jimi Hendrix gets into the hip-hop hall of fame. Then you'll have a point,” he tweeted (with a mention to Ice Cube). Of course, there isn’t a Hip-Hop Hall with the gravitas and prestige of the Rock Hall. Which is part of that point he’s making. Ice Cube hasn't yet fired back. See Simmons' tweet below.


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