Detroit Rock City
|"Detroit Rock City"|
|Single by Kiss|
|from the album Destroyer|
|Released||July 28, 1976|
Record Plant Studios, |
New York City: 1976
|Genre||Hard rock, heavy metal|
5:17 (album version)|
2:58 (single version)
3:35 (Double Platinum version)
|Kiss singles chronology|
"Detroit Rock City" is a song by the American hard rock group Kiss featured on their 1976 album, Destroyer. The song was written by Paul Stanley and Bob Ezrin and is about a real Kiss fan who was killed in a car accident on his way to a Kiss concert.
The song, recorded and released as a single in 1976, was the third single from Kiss's album Destroyer and was planned to be their last in support of the album. As a single, it did poorly in sales and radio play (other than in Detroit), and failed to chart in the U.S. even though it would prove to be a fan favorite. It came as a surprise that the B-side "Beth", a ballad written and sung by drummer Peter Criss, wound up catching on in different markets in the United States, so the single was reissued with "Beth" as the A-side and "Detroit Rock City" as the B-side.
On the Destroyer album, the song segues into "King of the Night Time World", via the sounds of a car crash. The songs were played together on the Destroyer tour.
During the Love Gun/Alive II tour, Stanley changed the lyric, "I know I'm gonna die, why?" to "I know I'm gonna die, and I don't care!" The song was #6 on VH1's 40 Greatest Metal Songs and is featured on the album Heavy Metal – The First 20 Years. "Detroit Rock City" was based on an earlier song that Kiss performed only in concert called "Acrobat".
- Its title was used for the 1999 motion picture of the same name, which revolves around a Kiss concert in Detroit.
- The Detroit Tigers often use the song when the team takes the field at the beginning of the game.
- The Detroit Red Wings play the tune right before the first face-off of a game and also during television and radio broadcasts.
- The fictional venue—The Rock City Theater located in Detroit, Michigan—appeared in the music video game Guitar Hero II.
- It is featured in the 2007 music video game Rock Band, in which the master track from the album version is used (without the car engine sounds).
- Kiss played it on an episode of Gene Simmons Family Jewels.
- It is featured in the 2008 music video game Rock Revolution.
- The Rock Band version of the song appears in the movie Paul Blart: Mall Cop.
- It is featured in the 2008 movie Role Models.
- It is featured in the 2009 music video game Dance Dance Revolution Hottest Party 3.
- It is featured in the 2011 movie The Dilemma.
- Due to the popularity of this song, Kiss is among the several recording artists to have a banner hanging from the rafters of the Palace of Auburn Hills to commemorate their many Metro Detroit sellouts.
- It is featured in the 2015 movie Scooby-Doo! and Kiss: Rock and Roll Mystery.
- Duralex Sedlex - The Evil Eye (1991)
- Rich Kids on LSD - "Berlin Rock City" - "Greatest Hits, Live in Berlin" 1988
- Halloween - "No One Gets Out" 1991
- The Mighty Mighty Bosstones – Kiss My Ass
- Hayseed Dixie – Let There Be Rockgrass
- Alien Fashion Show – "Detroit Swing City" (single, 1998)
- Metallica, Kid Rock, Sevendust and Ted Nugent live collaboration from New Years' Eve 1999 concert at the Pontiac Silverdome
- HammerFall – Crimson Thunder (bonus track)
- Radio Cult – "Grooves from the Grave" (2008)
- Sweet Siren
- Gwar during concerts around 1994
- GO!GO!7188 – "Kazari Janai no yo Namida wa" (originally by Akina Nakamori) on their cover album, Tora no Ana 2
- Bullet LaVolta – Gimme Danger / Hard to Believe: Kiss Covers Compilation
- Dee Snider – Spin the Bottle
- Racer X – Live Extreme Volume II
- Green Day – "Live in Detroit" July 14, 2009 (only played beginning)
- Paul Stanley - lead vocals/rhythm guitar/backing vocals
- Ace Frehley - lead guitar
- Gene Simmons - bass guitar/backing vocals
- Peter Criss - drums