Once in a lifetime — Adam Bomb plays “Firehouse” on Tommy Thayer’s guitar from KISS stage

Photo by Kid Leo

Once in a lifetime — Adam Bomb plays “Firehouse” on Tommy Thayer’s guitar from KISS stage

Back in 1982, 18 year old Adam Bomb auditioned for the one and only KISS who were looking to replace original lead guitarist Ace Frehley (more details in that regard in the interview snippet below). Bomb didn’t land the gig 41 years ago but he did get the very rare opportunity to play current KISS guitarist Tommy Thayer‘s guitar from an actual KISS stage on June 10, 2023. The encounter occurred as Bomb and his bandmates Kozzy Havokk (bass) and Leo Cakolli (drums) were in the midst of their Unfinished Business 2023 Tour and scheduled to play at Vagon Klub in Prague, Czech Republic on June 11, 2023. KISS were scheduled to play the O2 Arena in the same city one day earlier and the rest is KISStory.

The following messages were posted by Bomb on his Facebook page during the last two days:

“This was amazing. My life has just been turned upside down. Thank you KISS and Tommy Thayer. I’m getting a little emotional from seeing them again. But this moment here. Wow!!”

“Thank you Tommy and KISS for finally letting me know what’s it is like to play guitar on the KISS stage. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

The world is definitely a better place with KISS in it. My heart is breaking that this may the last time in my life that I see KISS.


“I’m still buzzing from hanging out with KISS. Leo said that nobody ever (even famous people) are allowed to play on KISS’s guitars on their stage. So maybe I am that one in a million.

Photo by Kid Leo

I think it’ll be fun to blast out a little KISS set during our show tonight in the center of Prague. If you happen to be in Prague and saw KISS last night, you’ll get even more back in touch with your younger self if you come see our show. It’s pretty much the same feeling you would get from the stage if you saw KISS or Motley in a small club before they made it big.

And my Marshall amp (signed by Jim Marshall) may not look as cool as the lights inside Tommy’s amplifier with his name on it (that nobody sees unless they go backstage) but my amp still sounds better than anybodys guitar tone in rock today. That includes every big band guitarist on the planet, the entire lineup of every huge rock festival, and pretty much every guitarist’s backline and their pedal boards that cost 10,000 bucks. You cannot out tone the sound that comes straight outta my Marshall.

Thank you from me to KISS for everything you taught me over the years and for a lifetime of inspiration. xx AB ❤️

Sleaze Roxx interviewed Adam Bomb back in February 2020 and asked him about his audition with KISS back in 1982 to which he replied: “As far as KISS in 1982, of course I was awe-struck. I was also a child. Those guys were grown-ass adults. I knew in my heart that I would not be the child guitar player in KISS, way before I ever got on the plane. But what it meant to me was that my life was starting. This rock and roll life I dreamt of having. I felt I was born in the wrong time. I was too young and I missed out on Led Zeppelin and the real masters of rock. Kids from my era just couldn’t create music like those guys did on guitar. Close, but not like Jimmy Page at age 27. I thought you had to be really something special to be a rockstar and truly be successful. But I was wrong and now the world has Poison. That’s what playing with KISS that day represented to me — the start of my life. An 18-year-old kid going to Hollywood alone for the first time.  Staying in the Tropicana hotel, going to the legendary Starwood, and going to SIR Studios on Hollywood Blvd to jam with KISS.”

On whether Gene Simmons (lead vocals, bass), Paul Stanley (lead vocals, rhythm guitar) and Eric Carr (drums) were in their KISS make-up during his audition back in 1982, Bomb indicated: “No. they were not in makeup. I’d seen Gene, Peter, Ace, and Paul without their make up years before, backstage at the Seattle Center, Coliseum and Gene earlier that very same day at the Edgewater Hotel. I was a hard core rock fan as a kid. All the kids could recognize them even though nobody had seen them without makeup. We knew them so well from the music and the magazines, so you just knew who they were when you saw them. KISS would probably say that about the time too. They were just these three New York guys, wearing expensive boots and cool clothes. I think I charmed them. They remembered my audition years later. I was the kid who sneaked past through the height detector to go on the KISS ride at Disneyland.”