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KISS Visit Kids At South Dakota’s Brennan Rock & Roll Academy

Jim Dyson, Getty Images

Students from Brennan Rock & Roll Academy in Sioux Falls, S.D. received a visit over the weekend from some true rock ‘n’ roll teachers, the members of KISS. The school was established to give children from the Boys & Girls Club music education that focuses on rock ‘n’ roll instruments.

“It’s all about giving back,” guitarist Paul Stanley told TV station Keloland. “Sooner or later success means giving back. It’s not an option. It’s an obligation.”

According to the Brennan Rock & Roll Academy website, the organization provides access to both real music lessons and the equipment used to create it for spirited children that may not otherwise have access. It only costs $25 a year.

According to Keloland, KISS is also covering the cost of the lessons for kids who sign up between now and the end of the year. “Here’s a cool place. They can come, be together, share ideas, and have big dreams because all kids have dreams,” bassist Gene Simmons told the station in video report seen here. “Mostly it’s a safe environment where they can soar. Anything is possible and that’s great.” Simmons performed for the kids — and gave advice — back in April, along with Motley Crue’s Vince Neil, when the Academy opened.

Named after Chuck Brennan, who is a former Sioux Falls Boys Club kid who went on to become a successful entrepreneur, the Brennan Rock & Roll Academy raised $1.3 milion in the spring. Brennan himself contributed $250,000 towards the opening and has committed nearly $3 million over the next 20 years, his bio says.

KISS made the detour to Sioux Falls after performing in Toronto on its way to Wisconsin and were given an enthusiastic welcome by the kids. “That’s priceless and that’s what it’s all about. It’s about putting the smiles on their faces, and ultimately giving kids something to do, whether it’s sports, any activity, music or sports, an activity rather than playing a Gameboy or punking around on the corner on the streets,” drummer Eric Singer said. He added, “I always say, pave the road behind you smoother for the next person. That’s what life is about.”

“A place for kids to come down in the afternoon, get that musical input, learn to play instruments and take them to the stage, so I think it’s an important part of that evolution for kids definitely,” lead guitarist Tommy Thayer added.

Next: KISS Premiere Spider Monster Stage Setting At Stockholm Concert

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