Bruce Howard Kulick (born December 12, 1953) is an American guitarist, musician and a member of the band Grand Funk Railroad. Previously, Kulick had been a long-time member of the band Kiss.
Kulick is also known for being a former member of the band Blackjack with Michael Bolton, and also played on several Michael Bolton solo albums. (Bolton later co-wrote the Kiss song "Forever", from Hot in the Shade).
"Stay", a Blackjack song co-written by Kulick and Bolton, was sampled by rapper Jay Z for the song "A Dream" off his 2002 album The Blueprint 2: The Gift & the Curse which reached #1 on the Billboard charts.
Kulick is best known as lead guitarist for the rock band Kiss from September 1984 to August 1996. Kulick never wore Kiss' face paint on stage, which they removed in 1983. He is one of only two members of Kiss, the other being guitarist Mark St. John whom Kulick replaced in 1984, to never wear makeup in the band. Kulick was the first member of Kiss to be billed under his actual birth name, and to date, along with Tommy Thayer, is one of only two members to ever do so. All other past and present members have been billed under stage names, legally-changed names, nicknames or modified names.
Originally brought in as a touring member after St. John was diagnosed with Reiter's Syndrome, Kulick played on five Kiss studio albums: Asylum, Crazy Nights, Hot in the Shade, Revenge and Carnival of Souls: The Final Sessions; he also appeared on Alive III and Kiss Unplugged. The song "I Walk Alone" from Carnival of Souls: The Final Sessions is the only Kiss track to feature Kulick as lead vocalist. To this day Kulick is featured on more than 20 Kiss releases.
When the original members of the band regrouped, starting in 1995 with the MTV Unplugged special that carried over into re-adopting their makeup and costuming for the "Reunion Tour" in 1996, Kulick and Eric Singer were paid weekly during the tour; while "sidelined" from Kiss, both were allowed to do other projects so long as Simmons and Stanley okayed them. Kulick officially left Kiss in December 1996. Kulick was with the band longer than any member aside from the original foursome and drummer Eric Singer. (Singer has done three discontinuous stints with the band, each much shorter than Kulick's.) When Ace Frehley again left Kiss (in 2002, after the Farewell Tour), Kulick was not asked to rejoin as Gene and Paul thought that Tommy Thayer (former Black 'n Blue guitarist and Kiss tour manager) could capture Ace's persona better than Bruce.
Kulick's brother Bob Kulick also played with Kiss as a session guitarist, and in addition appeared on Paul Stanley's 1978 solo album. Bob was also a member of Stanley's touring band for his 1989 club tour.
Union was formed from recently released musician Bruce Kulick, John Corabi, Brent Fitz, and Jamie Hunting in 1996. John and Bruce wrote what would become the first Union (1998) album (self titled) and proceeded with a nationwide acoustic tour, to promote the album, featuring just Corabi and Kulick (both on guitar). Soon the full band went on a world tour headlining small venues in support of the Union album. The second album "Live in the Galaxy" was a live recording with 2 acoustic tracks recorded in a mobile studio in 1999. The third and final Union album, The Blue Room (2000), was a more polished sound than the first studio CD. Union never officially called it quits (playing live shows every so often with guest drummers and bass players), but with Kulick playing along with Grand Funk Railroad, Corabi playing with many bands, most notably Ratt, and both members being tied up in solo projects, Union will probably never return to write new studio material..
Grand Funk Railroad
Kulick is the lead guitarist for Grand Funk Railroad, with whom he has been playing since 2001.
Kulick has released three solo albums, Audio Dog in 2001, Transformer in 2003, and most recently BK3, which was released on February 2, 2010.
In the late 1970s, following the release of Meat Loaf's first album Bat Out of Hell, Kulick played guitar on tour with Meat Loaf's band.
Before joining Meat Loaf Bruce Kulick toured for a couple months as the lead guitarist of the Andrea True Connection.
Kulick has also appeared on all album releases by Eric Singer's solo project ESP (Eric Singer Project): Lost and Spaced (1998), ESP (1999), and Eric Singer Project: Live in Tokyo (2006). Kulick also appeared on the DVD Eric Singer Project: Live at the Marquee (2006), which was filmed live in Australia.
Kulick appears on the Lordi March 2006 album The Arockalypse, playing lead guitar on the song "It Snows In Hell".
Kulick appears on Paul Stanley's 2006 album Live To Win, playing bass.
In 2006, Kulick performed on the compilation Butchering the Beatles, playing lead on the song "Drive My Car".
Kulick cut a guest guitar solo for the track "The Edge of the Razor" (featured on the album Emotional Coma) by Swedish metal group Lion's Share. Lion's Share had been recording in a studio owned by a former Kiss Army president of Sweden, who knew that Kulick was to arrive in Stockholm in order to attend a Kiss Expo. The studio owner suggested that Lion's Share invite Kulick to the studio. Kulick accepted the invitation and went to the studio, where he laid down a guitar solo. Kulick initially played a bluesy solo in the vein of Union, so Lion's Share guitarist Lars Chriss said; "Go back, and do some more flashy things". Chriss described the solo as being "very much based on revenge", and that Kulick "uses the whammy bar to show that". Furthermore, Chriss commented that the solo was "great", possessing "a lot of emotion", and that it "has some flashy elements". Afterwards, Kulick signed some Kiss albums for the group.
Kulick was a guest star along with Paul Stanley at Rock 'n Roll Fantasy Camp in New York City (Aug. 31-Sept. 3, 2003).
In his 2004 feature interview with Paul Stanley, Kulick discussed his very first recorded project from 1974, something called KKB. It featured performances by his childhood friends Mike Katz and Guy Bois (the other K and B of KKB, respectively) and he likened its sound to that of Cream. Kulick only recently found the master tape from those sessions and issued it via limited edition CD, available during his appearances at Kiss expos and via his website. In a follow-up interview with Paul Stanley, Kulick also discussed his lifelong love of Star Wars and its historical similarities to Kiss.
Kulick is one of the characters in the book Sex Tips from Rock Stars by Paul Miles, published by Omnibus Press in July 2010.
- Sherman, Dale (2009). Black Diamond: The Unauthorized Biography of KISS (10th Anniversary Edition). Ontario, CANADA: CG Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-1-894959-92-6.
- Bruce Kulick Interview with Guitarhoo! 2008.
- Bruce Kulick Interview at Confessions of a Pop Culture Addict