Rock And Roll All Nite
by Kiss

Album: Dressed To Kill (1975)
Charted: 12
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Songfacts®:

  • Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley of Kiss wrote this track, which became their signature song and was usually played as the last song in their encores. Stanley told Bruce Pollock: "Originally Gene and I would tend to help each other fill in the gaps. 'Rock and Roll All Night' came about because we felt we needed an anthem, a song that could be the rallying cry for all of our fans. So I went back to the hotel and came up with the chorus and the melody. Then I went down to see Gene and he came up with the verses. We used to write a lot like that. As Gene and I became better writers we became either less willing to bend on our individual ideas, or it may have been that we both figured our songs would be stronger if developed by the person who wrote them."
  • "Rock And Roll All Nite" is the song that defined Kiss' musical identity, which at the time wasn't clear. They wore costumes and makeup, but without a unified theme: Gene Simmons was a demon, Paul Stanley a star chile, Ace Frehley a spaceman, and Peter Criss a cat. It wasn't coming together, and they were struggling.

    Kiss released their first two albums nine months apart in 1974: Kiss and Hotter Than Hell. Both put up modest sales figures and their Hotter Than Hell tour wasn't helping. Neil Bogart, the head of their label (Casablanca Records) stopped the tour and had them hunker down to write a song that would define who they were as a band, using the Sly & the Family Stone song "I Want to Take You Higher" as a model.

    In the book Music, Lyrics, and Life, Stanley says Bogart asked them to write "A song that your fans can rally behind. A song that says what you stand for and what the manifesto is."

    The plan worked, but not right away. The studio version, released on April 2, 1975 and included on their third album, Dressed To Kill peaked at #68 on the Hot 100. But the song is best experienced live, fueled with the energy from the crowd. To capture this energy, Casablanca released a live version, recorded at Cobo Hall, Detroit, on May 16, 1975, as a single later that year. This version reached #12 in early 1976, giving Kiss their first substantial hit. It also anchored Alive!, their first of many Gold-certified albums.
  • This was featured in the 1993 movie Dazed And Confused. It also appeared in these films:

    Why Him? (2016)
    The Nice Guys (2016)
    Gulliver's Travels (2010)
    Role Models (2008)
    Less Than Zero (1987)
  • As Gene Simmons made clear in his Songfacts interview, drugs and alcohol are not part of the Kiss rock and roll lifestyle. They may party every day, but they do it substance-free.

    Paul Stanley concurs; he told 77 WABC Radio's Bernie & Sid In The Morning in 2019 that rather being about getting high, stoned and/or drunk, "Rock And Roll All Nite" is a song of celebration.

    "It was, 'I wanna rock and roll all night and party every day. I wanna have a great time and make the most of life,'" he explained. "And that's really what both my point of view and Kiss's point of view has always been - to celebrate life and to make the most of life - because, as far as I know, we don't get a second chance. So this is our bite of the apple. So, make the most of your life."
  • Part of "Rock And Roll All Nite" plays on the car radio in the montage that opens "Detroit Rock City," the first track on Kiss' 1976 album Destroyer.
  • When That '70s Show went into syndication in 2002, its distributor commissioned a video showing the cast at a Kiss concert in 1977, where they're playing this song. Of course, the gang ends up on stage and infiltrates the backstage area.
  • On the 1996 Kiss Unplugged album, each of the original band members sang a line of this song as they played it on acoustic instruments. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Gary - Steeleville, IL
  • Ace Frehley was Kiss' lead guitarist for this one. He feels it's some of his best work, telling Songfacts, "It's just a nice, Chuck Berry kind of solo. Reminiscent of older rock n' roll songs."
  • The members of Kiss provided their voices for an episode of Family Guy where Peter and Lois are following a Kiss tour. As the band plays this song, they hold the microphone up to Lois in the crowd to sing along after the line, "I wanna rock and roll all nite and..."

    Even though most people (including non-Kiss fans) know the words, Lois doesn't, and says, "have a wonderful time." This leads to her revelation that she just pretends to like Kiss for Peter's sake, which upsets him until they go to a restaurant and meet the band, who recognize Lois from when she was a groupie known as "Loose Lois." Peter is honored that his wife slept with Kiss. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bert - Pueblo, NM
  • The hair-metal band Poison covered this song for the soundtrack of the 1987 film Less Than Zero. It later appeared on their 2006 compilation The Best of Poison: 20 Years of Rock and again on their 2007 covers album Poison'd! >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alec Thorp - Yorktown Heights, NY
  • This song is referenced in the 1996 episode of The Simpsons, "Homerpalooza," where Homer says, "I used to rock and roll all night and party every day, then it was every other day. Now I'm lucky if I can find half an hour a week in which to get funky."
  • Kiss and figure skating finally came together when the band performed "Rock And Roll All Nite" at the closing ceremony of the 2002 Winter Olympics from Salt Lake City as Katarina Witt and Kristi Yamaguichi skated to it.
  • Kiss were never deemed suitable for halftime entertainment at the Super Bowl, but they did perform this song at the 1999 pre-game show with dancers dressed like the band.
  • On the 1999 Friends episode "The One After Vegas," a tired Joey starts singing this to keep himself awake - right before he falls asleep.

    It was also used in these TV shows:

    The Dangerous Book For Boys ("How To Walk On The Moon" - 2018)
    Ugly Betty ("Odor In The Court" - 2008)
    Dharma & Greg ("Do You Want Fries With That?" - 1998)
    Full House ("On The Road Again" - 1994)
  • On May 1, 2009, Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons' voices appeared on the television show The Fairly OddParents on the channel Nickelodeon. Kiss plays the role of the "Galactic Guardians of the White Wand." The song "Rock and Roll All Nite" is played at the beginning and end of their concert. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Zach - Pocahontas, AR
  • Stanley and Simmons kept the lyric in the first person ("I want to," as opposed to "You want to" or "We want to") so as not to sound preachy. As Stanley points out, it's "I pledge allegiance to the flag."

Comments: 34

  • Ashley from Wayland, Mii love kiss! demon fan forever!
  • Bo from Indian River, MiI was given Paul's busted guitar by a security member after a show in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It's framed and hangs on my wall.
  • Jason from Aurora, CoThere are alot of artists and bands who have earned their way into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but NONE more deserving than KISS! The people at the R&R hall of fame need to wake up and realize where the REAL talent lies, They're not called the Hottest band in the WORLD for nothing!
  • Jeff from Williamsport, PaAnyone that says this song is annoying doesn't enjoy rock-n-roll. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is a big joke. Kiss (and Rush, Moody Blues, Grand Funk, Chicago, Def Leppard, Heart, Stevie Ray Vaughn and many others) are NOT in, yet they've added Madonna, ABBA, and Conway Twitty!
  • Jedd from Savannah, GaI love Kiss, they were my first concert,I was at the Forum the second night when they were taping for Kiss Alive 2 and am in the picture of the crowd on the inside of the album cover
  • Tomas from Prague, Czech RepublicIt's true what they said, it's an anthem for all the people that love rock n' roll
  • Stormy from Northport, MiAnytime,anywhere,at any decent party,this song plays and someone ALWAYS turns it up!
    Good stuff.
  • David from Youngstown, OhThe lyrics to this song are so simplistic and repeats the two lines over and over and over and over again. Yet it so rocks!!
  • Jason from Denver, CoI wonder what the total dollar value of all the guitars that Paul Stanley smashed during this song is. CHA CHING
  • Alex from Bundaberg, AustraliaKISS will always be the best band in rock and roll history no matter what!
  • Bob from Mason City, IaKISS will always be the greatest band ever. When the sex pistols and Madonna make it into the rock and roll hall of fame before KISS, there's is something wrong with America. Liberals have too much control over everything. When 4 guys make it HUGE from New York City and worked crap jobs there, and never get invited to be on snl......WTF
  • Cristina from Long Beach, Cathey actually play very well and this is a song that you can dance to all night and you can sing along to but the best is the guitar solo wow that gives me the chills
  • Mark from Grafton, United StatesKiss' popularity has to be based on their stage show - certainly not their music. This is the only song I can stand of theirs, and it is very repititious. No one in the band can sing, either. How they made as much money as they did is a mystery to me.
  • Rob from Brockton, Mausually kiss plays this for their encore at live shows
  • Joe from Bellingham, WaI remember when it was 11:30PM, fourth of July 1987, in Los Angelas, me and my cousins got a boom box blasted this up, shooting roman candles through the streets and screaming the lyrics! Andre! if you're reading this man, that was an awesome night!
  • Tom from East Lyme, CtThis song is so annoying and repetitive...
  • Patrick from Tallapoosa, GaThis is a song that will get you pulled over because you have to crank it up LOUD when it's played on the radio.
  • Caitlin from Upper Township, NjHands down, one of the best rock songs ever recorded!
  • I'm Awesome from Boulder, Cothis song is great but kiss has alot of others that are just as good if not better....
  • Alec from Macomb, Miever sice i was 8 this has been my favorite Rock Song.
  • Patrick from Tallapoosa, GaThere was an episode of "The Simpsons" where Homer tried to be cool for his kids. Unfortunately he isn't, and when he realizes this, he says he used to "rock and roll all night and party every day. Then it was every other day..."
  • Deo from Annandale, VaThis is the only KISS song I will listen to.
  • Jack from Soperton, GaGene Simmons' bass work makes this song really good. Ah, the good ole 70's...posters on the bedroom wall, awfully designed clothing in the closet,an underpowered hi-fi in the corner, and KISS blowing the crap out of the speakers.
  • Mleissa from Wasaga Beach, CanadaThis song definately sums up classic rock. Just some good songs that you could destroy your bedroom to. Ye-ah Lol
  • Sabrina from Montreal, CanadaThis song is awesome!! Kiss ROCKS!!!
  • Jonathan from Oklahoma City, OkRock and Roll all nite is the ROCK AND ROLL NATIONAL ANTHEM!!
  • Tom from Lausanne, SwitzerlandIn my KISS collection, which goes up to Animalize or thereabouts, this is the only song which can be heard on three sequentially released albums. That makes for a nice trivia question to stump your friends with.
  • Charlie from Thomaston, Dci love waching ace whip out the solo in concert
  • Frank from Staten Island , NyIts a simple song, but it pretty much sums it all up for everyone. Will KISS ever drop this from their setlist?
  • Will from Portland, OrIf we had to sum up the entire era of rock music in one song, this would be it. The anthem of rock. One of the few songs I can play the solo to. Not my very favorite song, but definitely sums up rock and roll
  • Jimbo from Corpus Christi, TxThis is the song of songs. KISS is still rockin'.
  • Jeff from Haltom City, TxKnown, unofficially of course, as the national anthem of rock and roll.
  • Matt from Amarillo, Txin the movie detroit rock city the kids are playing it for practice
  • Ozzy from Detroit, Mepaul always breaks his guitar after the song
see more comments

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