Gene Simmons Wants to Trademark Iconic Rock Hand Gesture

KISS frontman says he first used 'devil's horns' in 1974.

June 15, 2017 1:40 pm
Gene Simmons Wants to Trademark Iconic Rock Gesture
Musician Gene Simmons performs onstage during the 23rd Annual Race To Erase MS Gala at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on April 15, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images for Race To Erase MS)

Metal fans often make the “devil’s horns” hand gesture when their favorite song comes on the radio.

But one rocker believes he originated the . According to The Hollywood Reporter, KISS frontman Gene Simmons—a recent member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame—has filed an application to trademark the act. In the application, Simmons notes the “devil’s horns” were first used in commerce on November 14, 1974.

So, at least in Simmons’ account of history, had you seen the band perform on its Hotter Than Hell Tour—which ran from October 1974 to February 1975, you might’ve witnessed the first-ever usage of the hand gesture.

Simmons might be in for an uphill battle, though; there are a number of other similar gestures that have been in use a lot longer. As THR notes, John Lennon appeared on the cover of a 1966 Beatles single making a similar hand gesture. There’s also the University of Texas at Austin’s “Hook ‘Em Horns” gesture. And of course, satanists may want to possess spiritual ownership.

KISS’ Simmons is no stranger to controversy. He recently called Prince’s death “pathetic.”

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