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KISS and Tell: One-on-One With Gene Simmons

Gene Simmons: Rock Star. American Pop Icon. Greatest Merchandiser on the Planet?

That’s what Cramer called the former KISS frontman on Friday’s Mad Money. As a judge on The Celebrity Apprenticethis week, Cramer participated in Simmons' firing after his team lost this week's task, an Eastman Kodak branding competition. (See footage of Cramer on the show)

Cramer admitted he didn’t want to fire Simmons, who the Mad Money host said was the best marketer and salesperson among the cast. But Simmons admitted that part of him wanted to get the boot after realizing some of the contestants were less interested in the “entrepreneurial spirit” of the show than being on television.

“In the end, a captain must go down with his ship,” Simmons said. But, turning from that modesty, he told Cramer: “I was the best thing on that show, and you know it.”

Cramer didn’t disagree.

Simmons also spoke of his other business ventures, including a joint marketing endeavor, Simmons-Abramson, which does the branding and promotion of the IndyCar Racing Series that includes the iconic Indy 500. And that doesn’t even include the massive KISS merchandising empire, which owns around 2,500 product licenses.

Finally, turning back to The Celebrity Apprentice, Cramer had to ask Gene who he thought deserved to win. His answer? Donald Trump.

Not just a great marketer, but a politician as well.

MORE: Cramer's Interview with Donald Trump

Check out the web-exclusive portion of the interview here
Make sure to catch an encore presentation of The Celebrity Apprentice on CNBC Saturday at 8p and 11p ET

Questions for Cramer? madmoney@cnbc.com

Questions, comments, suggestions for the Mad Money website? madcap@cnbc.com

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  • Jim Cramer

    Jim Cramer is host of CNBC's "Mad Money" and co-anchor of the 9 a.m. ET hour of CNBC's "Squawk on the Street."

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