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Lick It Up
“Brian, I’m just here to tell you that Kevin and I have declared shenanigans on your choice of opening music,” were my first words to the groom at his wedding reception. After the introductions, and the toasts, people were starting to mingle, and I approached the head table, first to hug my old friend, then to inform him that he had royally chickened out. Brian threw his head back and laughed, as he knew EXACTLY why Kevin and I were “upset” with his choice of entrance music.
“The night is young, Courtney. Who knows what may pop up?” He laughed again, and hugged me, and I went back to tell Kevin that Brian had been scolded.
You see, Brian may possibly be the world’s biggest KISS fan. I would go so far to say that the strength of your relationship with Brian almost entirely depends on how well you can embrace this band. Which is probably why Brian and I didn’t get along for many years; I wouldn’t buy in. Of course, we all have that secret KISS chromosome that we don’t like to admit to anyone, and one day the tide turned. Brian also has this Monkees thing, and I know only ONE PERSON who has seen the movie, “Head” independent of his influence, but today, we’re talking about KISS. In fact, the one and only time I saw KISS in concert was with him. About halfway through the show (where we were somewhere in the first 10 rows, of course), he grabs my hand and says, “Come on! Hurry!” He pulls me out of our seats and down to the soundboard. Annoyed that we were missing the spectacle, I said, “what the fuck, dude?” Paul Stanley chose that very moment to fly through the air, land on a platform by the soundboard and sing “Love Gun”. Brian is the man.
For a long time, Brian and I had a Sunday night ritual—pizza from Domino’s and either a movie or music in his living room. During one of these Sundays, he revealed his wedding plan to me. “I’m walking into the reception to ‘Lick it Up’. Whoever I marry just better get used to that.” Over the course of our almost 20 year friendship, we probably had that conversation at LEAST that many times. As I found out waiting for his wedding ceremony to begin, he’d had that conversation with other people as well. His friend Kevin and I discussed it as the guests were assembling. We almost made a wager, but decided to just wait and see. I’d had a conversation with a friend of mine the week before the wedding, and, in telling him this story, revealed my suspicions that Brian would chicken out. “It’s an easy thing to chicken out of, I think”, was my friend’s reply. And, unfortunately, he was right.
However, Brian and Alicia did enter their wedding reception to Queen’s “Flash Gordon”. So, some comedy was maintained. And, it was the best music I’d ever heard at a wedding reception, as the dj announced that every song he played that night was hand picked by the bride and groom. Which made it like the best party we’d ever thrown, all of our good friends, great music, and free booze. “Lick it Up” was not overlooked. They cut the cake with that song as a soundtrack.