Although he will not accompany Kiss to the Far East and Down Under, drummer Peter Criss does not wish to be kissed off just yet.
In the wake of Wednesday's announcement that Eric Singer, the third Kiss drummer, would play in Japan and Australia on the March dates of the band's year-long farewell jaunt, Criss has confirmed that he is off the tour at least for now.
His statement, issued to the Associated Press, reads, "It is unfortunate that Gene [Simmons] and Paul [Stanley] chose to terminate their association with me for the Japan and Australia tour dates. I am healthy and will truly miss performing."
Criss' lawyer, Mike Celli, did not specify details of a meeting between Criss and Kiss' prime movers, Stanley and Simmons, to the AP. He was quoted as saying, "We were in the middle of negotiating, and there was an offer taken off the table."
Celli did say there was a possibility that Criss would return to the band by April, when the band will likely stage a climactic finale to what has been promoted as Kiss' last-ever tour.
McGee Entertainment, the management firm that represents Kiss, had no comment on Criss' statement or on Celli's comments. A representative for McGee did confirm that Singer would slather on makeup for the Far East dates and become the second feline-styled drummer in the final days of Kiss' 28-year career.