Gene Simmons Recalls Hallucinating After First And Only Time He Got High

KISS Performs At Staples Center

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Gene Simmons is one of the biggest rockstars in the world, but the KISS bassist and vocalist has always adhered to a sober lifestyle. He's been high once in his life, and it was after accidentally eating six weed brownies. Gene recalled the story during a visit to theYour Mom’s House with Christina P. and Tom Segura podcast with his son Nick Simmons.

"I've never been drunk or high in my life," Gene prefaced the story, which took place in the '70s. Then Nick explained that his dad is “so removed from drug culture that he didn’t know that you can bake cannabis into baked goods.”

“So, please describe then what you hallucinated,” he said to his dad. “You’ve told me this a couple of times. It’s my favorite story.”

“So, you’ve got a room full of people celebrating – we’re breaking some kind of record in Detroit…This was in ’76," Gene began. "The whole room is full, and I’m just seeing the brownies piled [high]. And I love that stuff. Everyone’s [like] ‘Let’s smoke, let’s put things up our a**.’ No, just give me cake.”

He noted that the woman handing out the brownies was attractive. “[She] comes over, and I’m [like,] ‘Give me another one of those.’ Then I started, like a dog with a bone, just following her around. ‘Can I have another one?’ ‘You want another one?’ And I just kept eating it – six,'” he said. Then all of a sudden the room “started to get bigger, and my head started to get smaller…down to the size of an olive”.

“I remember this: I started to open my eyes [wide] so that people would think I’m normal. And as I moved, my hands became – as it gets farther [away from you], it gets smaller – nope, [my hands] ballooned up like cartoons. So it got enormous," he added. The editor of Creem was there and helped him get into his limo, because he was so incapacitated. “And as I’m walking, every step I take, [I have giant feet]. … And I’m talking loudly because I don’t think she can hear me, ’cause my voice [seems] small.”

“We get in the limo, and I’m afraid to move or anything,” Gene admitted. “And I’m thirsty…So they pull over two or three blocks in a ghetto in Detroit, and she leads me in to get me a drink…And it’s filled with neighborhood folks who are there at night grabbing a burger and stuff after the show. And I’m dressed in leather, no kidding, and they all turn around… And I’m thinking, ‘They’re all looking at me because my head is small’. So I try to make myself bigger. And I go up, and the guy goes, ‘What’ll ya have?’ And I go – yelling – ‘Can I have a glass of milk?!'”

Though the story is hilarious, Gene's reason for being sober is more serious. He explained how he stayed away from drugs and alcohol out of respect of his late mother, who was a Holocaust survivor. “She was in a concentration camp when she was 14 years of age. And I never wanted to break her heart,” he said. “And I was always aware I never wanted to disappoint her – there was enough aggravation. So I never smoked cigarettes, never got high, never got drunk.”

Listen to the full podcast episode above.

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