If you don’t know by now, Ace Frehley and I are old friends. If not for a simple twist of fate (and he having better hair than me) I could have auditioned at that Wicked Lester rehearsal hall in 1972. Oh yeah, and he is a monster player and was the perfect guy for the part. But we both saw the ad and called each other up. “Are you going?” said Ace. “I’m thinking about it.” I replied. “Don’t take this the wrong way, Chris, but you ain’t got the hair for it.” And he was so right.
So through the years our paths just keep crossing. In 1980 I brought him into Chip Taylor’s (Wild Thing, etc) recording studio where I was chief engineer. I helped him on his Dynasty contributions, even suggesting one of his signature songs, the Stones’ “2000 Man”. Then we recorded the quirky hit, “Eugene” with studio co-owner, Crazy Joe Renda. Throughout the 2000’s we helped each other stay sober while working in his Yorktown, NY studio. And then in 2014 we finally wrote one together that hit #9 on the Billboard charts.
Through all this I stuck with my core business, team building, where I could utilize many of the assets that are prized in the music business: performance, knowing your crowd, delivering the product and simply communicating. I had a team builder in Houston last week and, lo and behold, Ace was in town to kick off his 2016 tour. He invited me over and since I have developed a “rock’n’roll” event (Hotel California) that needed some 360 VR, I threw the new Ricoh Theta camera in my pocket and headed out.
My idea for the Escape Room game is to have participants use the Google Cardboard viewer to find a clue in the “hotel room” they are staying in. Since this is all virtual, any element of reality is helpful. So here is a trial, Ace in the middle of his “Smoking Guitar” solo. I had fans behind me screaming behind me, Ace in top volume screaming in front of me. And (you miss it here) the stage manager trying to throw me out. All good.