Among the Kiss Fanatics

“We want more! We want more! We want more!”

“Thank you, Ace! Thank you, Ace! Thank you, Ace!”

Such chants are common throughout Nashville’s Sonesta Airport Hotel on this balmy Memorial Day weekend. Everywhere, there’s a feverish energy. A geodesic dome behind the main building bustles with vendors offering T-shirts, posters, magazines, and other miscellanea at variable prices; guests from across the United States swarm the restaurant, overwhelming its weary staff; lines that stretch across the lobby from the conference hall to the elevators are met with curious glances from receptionists. At night, the ballroom is populated by a roaring crowd, its veneration directed toward a stage adorned with shining spotlights and towering amplifiers.

Gathered together in the Tennessee heat are a unique breed of obsessives, united by a fondness for greasepaint and guitars. They are the Kiss Army: fervid devotees of the garish glam rockers who dominated ‘70s Americana. And they have assembled here to celebrate their shared affection for the self-professed “Hottest Band in the World.”

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