LOS ANGELES - Organizers of a Michael Jackson tribute concert dropped Kiss from the lineup after receiving widespread criticism for booking the band despite critical comments toward the late pop singer by bassist Gene Simmons.
The Aug. 16 announcement came a day after Global Live Events announced Kiss would join the show planned for Oct. 8 in Cardiff, Wales. Fans, media and the singer's estate quickly noted that Simmons has said in recent years that he was convinced Jackson molested children. Some of the critical comments came within days of Jackson's June 2009 death.
Jackson was acquitted of molestation charges after a 2005 trial in California.
Some of Simmons' harshest comments came last year in an interview with Classic Rock magazine.
"Well, you know, where there's smoke there's fire," Simmons said regarding accusations that Jackson abused young boys. "There's no question in my mind he molested those kids. Not a doubt."