Former ACE FREHLEY Bassist ANTHONY ESPOSITO Says He Was 'Tossed Away' And 'Dissed' By Original KISS Guitarist

Former ACE FREHLEY Bassist ANTHONY ESPOSITO Says He Was 'Tossed Away' And 'Dissed' By Original KISS Guitarist recently conducted an interview with former ACE FREHLEY bassist Anthony Esposito. You can now listen to the chat in the YouTube clip below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On what it was like working with Ace Frehley:

Esposito: "It started out really amazing, really great. We were really good friends, close friends. [We did] everything from riding Harleys together to going to Yankee games and stuff like that, just hanging out, being bros kind of thing. And we started working on the music for [2009's] 'Anomaly' [album], and then I put a band together for him and did a few gigs. And then we decided to record 'Anomaly'. And we were really, really close friends, and it was great working with him. He's a very talented guitar player and great songwriter. But over a period of time, different people come in and out of the circle, and so it kind of got stretched and twisted. But he was a really close friend of mine for a while."

"When I met him, I think I had 14 years or sobriety, or 13 years of sobriety, and so a lot of it was based on [the fact that] he wanted to quit drinking at that time. So I guess he [needed] a good influence to put him on that path. But he did a lot of it on his own. He was pretty adamant about quitting."

On whether it is true that he quit Frehley's band:

Esposito: "Definitely not. I did not quit. When I first joined, we were gigging out and we were touring, and gradually, over a period of time, it got less and less. [We did] not [play any shows] in 2013, and we played five shows in 2012 and 15 shows in 2011. It was a gradual decline in the amount of touring that we were doing. So I reached out to him… He didn't use me on [this year's 'Space Invader'] record, which I thought was kind of hard after 'Anomaly' did so well and so many people liked it and I was really instrumental in that record, in putting it together and the riffs and the sounds of it and helping Ace put it together; I was around a lot for that. And I was surprised that I wasn't asked to be a part of this record ['Space Invader']. So I kind of saw that [coming]. He kind of moved to California, and I kind of got left behind. And when the record ['Space Invader'] was done… There were a lot of KISS fans that were posting [messages online asking me] whether I liked it or not. And I was getting blasted with messages on Facebook and texts on my phone, 'Are you gonna tour [with Ace]? Are you in [Ace's] touring band?' So I reached out to Ace. I was, like, 'Hey, Ace, I don't know if you're gonna go out and support this new album [with live shows], and I don't know if I'm in the touring band or not in the touring band.' And, basically, 'I'm getting all these messages and I would like to know how I should answer them.' And he texted me back and he was, like, basically, 'I'm gonna go in a different direction with West Coast musicians. Chris Wyse from THE CULT is my new [bass] player.'

"I was in the band for seven years. And I kind of did a lot more than just play bass; I was the tour manager, stage manager, merch guy, I would settle all the money with promoters… I mean, [I was involved in setting up] the blue plexi backline, the walk-on music, he would always ask me about setlist questions. It was more than just a hired-bass-guy sideman. And I was kind of shocked that I was just tossed away. But I guess that's the nature of the job…

"I just got asked to [make an appearance] September 13 at the KISS convention in New Jersey, so I'm bringing all of my [road gear and personal merchandise collection] and I'm just gonna sell it all off. Really, the way it ended left a bad taste in my mouth and I just wanna get rid of it. I feel kind of dissed. [But] what are you gonna do? It is what it is."

On whether he would rejoin Frehley's touring band, if asked:

Esposito: "No. A lot of things would have to change before I went back, and don't think they're gonna change, so I'm not interested in going back. The whole thing is, I tried to make the whole thing a pro organization with the selection of musicians and the way that every penny was accounted for. I appreciate that he trusted me to do all that, and I accounted for every penny, I accounted for everything."


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