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Cinderella’s Tom Keifer Says Gene Simmons Discovered Band, Not Jon Bon Jovi

Frederick M. Brown / Rick Diamond / Michael Dodge, Getty Images

Despite a widespread belief that Jon Bon Jovi discovered Cinderella, vocalist Tom Keifer says that it was actually KissGene Simmons who got there first. In a new interview, Keifer expressed a desire to “set the record straight” concerning the matter.

“Jon [Bon Jovi] is credited with discovering the band. Or, in other words, his interest in the band actually led to a record deal,” Keifer told Big Music Geek. “But if you went back a couple years before that, Gene Simmons was actually the guy who first took an interest in the band. His interest did not lead to a deal for one reason or another.”

Keifer noted that Simmons had brought the group to the attention of PolyGram who, at the time, didn’t show an interest in signing the band. It wasn’t until Bon Jovi began singing the praises of Cinderella to their A&R man at PolyGram that the label took a second look at the band but even then, they encountered their share of resistance.

“He told his A&R guy they were chumming about us and said, ‘You’ve got to go down and see them.’ He came down and he still wasn’t convinced. He wanted to hear more material and signed us to a six-month development deal. We finally won him over and he signed us to a full deal, but that was a bit of a process too. I’m grateful to both Gene and Jon for the interest they took in the band.”

Although things have been relatively quiet in the Cinderella camp lately, the group’s individual members continue to keep busy. Last week (July 17), in an UCR exclusive, Cinderella guitarist Jeff LaBar released his first-ever solo video for ‘No Strings.’ In 2013, Tom Keifer released, ‘The Way Life Goes.’ In an interview with us, Keifer said that the door is definitely not closed on future Cinderella work:

“In terms of new Cinderella music, like I said, we never say never. It’s not for a lack of desire. It just needs to be the right situation at the right place and the right time with the right deal.”

Next: Tom Keifer Discusses His Solo Album

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