KISS frontman says he created rock n’ roll hand sign in the 1970s
By David Sands
June 15, 2017
Gene Simmons is saying he had a hand in creating a popular rock and roll gesture–and now he wants to patent it.
The KISS frontman and bassist has filed an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to trademark what he describes in his paperwork as “a hand gesture with the index and small fingers extended upward and the thumb extended perpendicular.”
In his application, Simmons claims he first used the hand sign on November 14, 1974, a date which would haven corresponded with Kiss’ Hotter Than Hell tour. According to The Hollywood Reporter, an examiner reviewing his application would need to “consider the likelihood of confusion and, possibly, whether it’s too generic to be associated with Simmons.”
It’s worth noting that John Lennon is photographed making the gesture on the cover of The Beatles’ 1966 “Yellow Submarine/Eleanor Rigby” single. And the late metal singer Ronnie James Dio claimed to have popularized a more common “devil horns” variant of the sign — that involves placing one’s thumb over two center fingers while keeping the outer ones up — after a gesture his Italian grandmother used to ward off the evil eye.
Gene Simmons will be appearing at the Fanboy Expo Knoxville, Tennessee for a meet and greet on June 23 and performing with KISS at the Chicago Open Air Festival on July 14 and the Grand Casino in Hinckley, Minnesota on July 14. He’ll follow those dates up with a series of KISS and solo band concerts later this summer and fall.
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