Writers: Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley
Producers: Kenny Kerner and Richie Wise
Recorded: October 1973 at Bell Sound Studios, New York City
Released: February 1974
|Players:||Gene Simmons — vocals, bass
Paul Stanley — guitar, vocals
Ace Frehley — guitar, vocals
Peter Criss — drums, vocals
|Album:||Kiss (Casablanca, 1974)|
“Strutter” was one of the first songs Kiss took into the studio, recording a demo version with producer Eddie Kramer in the spring of 1973 at Electric Lady Studios in New York City.
Kramer chose the song as one of five to record in the demo session after attending one of Kiss's first shows in New York City.
The track started life as a Gene Simmons song called “Stanley The Parrot.” He and Paul Stanley took the chord pattern of that song, sped up the tempo, and attached some Rolling Stones-style guitar riffs to flesh out the track.
Stanley said he was the one who came up with the song's title: “I said it sounded like strutting — 'Let's call it “Strutter.”' And the lyric was basically just about what was going on in New York at that point, a lot of hot-looking chicks dressed in hot clothes, kind of following the philosophy of 'it pays to advertise.'”
Simmons said that working with Kramer was a dream come true for the young band: “We connected right away in terms of our aesthetics. We, after all, came from the same school of thought. Everything Kramer had worked on was also our aesthetic, everything from the Beatles to Led Zeppelin to Jimi Hendrix were certainly our food staple.”
Peter Criss said, “I've always loved 'Strutter.' I could play that every night. It's one of the best rock songs ever written.”
Kiss' self-titled debut album received a lukewarm commercial reception. It peaked at Number 87 on the Billboard 200, although it eventually went gold in the wake of the breakthrough success of 1975's Alive!