Video of the Week: Interview with Alice Cooper on Late Musician Glen Campbell

Did You Ever Realize…

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That awesome time in 1975 when there was a giant Alice Cooper balloon

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(via Dangerous Minds)

http://dangerousminds.net/comments/that_awesome_time_in_1975_when_there_was_a_giant_alice_cooper_balloon

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Also…

Love it to death: Alice Cooper’s original guillotine ‘headed’ to auction

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http://dangerousminds.net/comments/love_it_to_death_alice_coopers_original_guillotine_headed_to_auction

Recommended Albums #65

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Alice Cooper: Welcome to My Nightmare (1975)

alice 1Welcome to My Nightmare is so many things.

This is the album that ushered in Alice’s solo career after the Alice Cooper band’s half-decade of success with hits such as “I’m Eighteen”, “No More Mr. Nice Guy” and “School’s Out”.

This is Alice’s only top ten album as a solo artist (it peaked at #5). He never again equaled its success or its excellence.

This is a concept album and the template for several other conceptual records Alice would release over the years–but Nightmare is by far the best in terms of execution.

Speaking of execution, Nightmare was tied in with a new live show that essentially brought Halloween and Rock music together onstage and culminated with the protagonist’s grisly nightly demise, a concert format that continues to this day.

Welcome to My Nightmare exchanged the musical gut punch of the Alice Cooper band for a more polished, fully-orchestrated Bob Ezrin-produced sound. The strings, horns and harmonies gave the album a broader palette and a deeper resonance; the creepy bits were creepier and the weepy bits weepier. Listen to a sample of Ezrin’s orchestration from “Steven” and note its similarity in feel to “Beth” by Kiss, released the following year and also co-written and produced by Ezrin:

“Devil’s Food” features a cameo by horror legend Vincent Price, who lends just the right element of creepy camp to the proceedings.

alice 2“Some Folks” takes things into cabaret territory, adding one more flavor to a record more diverse than anything the Alice Cooper band had done.

“Only Women”, with its acoustic guitars and muted horn charts reaches an emotional crescendo Alice had never before been able to achieve with his old band. The #12 hit added a new dimension to Alice’s career as a singles artist, that of credible balladeer; his next three albums would feature a love song as a hit single (“I Never Cry”, “You and Me” and “How You Gonna See Me Now”).

“Cold Ethyl” is just your everyday run-of-the-mill paean to, um, necrophilia.

But it’s with “Years Ago”, “Steven” and “The Awakening” that things get really dark. The overarching concept of the album is the ongoing nightmare of Alice’s protagonist character, but here on what used to be the vinyl album’s side two (as it happens) Alice delves into a world of schizoid delusion. Terrificly horrific stuff, well conceived and arranged. Where “Cold Ethyl” is a comic lark, these songs are truly chilling.

Producer/co-writer Bob Ezrin and guitarist/co-writer Dick Wagner are the unsung heroes of this album, the greatest of Alice Cooper’s long solo career. Without them this record wouldn’t be what it is: a true classic.

Listen to: “Devil’s Food/The Black Widow”

Listen to: “Some Folks”

Listen to: “Only Women Bleed”

Listen to: “Cold Ethyl”

Listen to: “Years Ago/Steven”

Listen to: “The Awakening”

NHL Goalie Mike Smith to Honor Alice Cooper with new Mask

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The Arizona Coyotes will go retro on Thursday against the Vancouver Canucks, donning throwback jerseys on a night the team will honor former forward Jeremy Roenick.

Another figure from the Coyotes hockey scene will also be honored, just a bit more subtly. Goalie Mike Smith will wear a special mask for the game with rock icon Alice Cooper painted on its back plate…

See more: http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=756743&navid=nhl:topheads

Alice Cooper Reveals His Top 5 Horror Films

Alice Cooper Bites Head Off Chicken! (Well, Not Really…)

I thought I’d share actual video of one of the more infamous–and erroneous–stories in rock history. For years people told the story of how Alice Cooper bit the head off a live chicken onstage, a story that helped cement his shock rocker rep.
The truth, revealed in this documentary clip, was that someone in the audience threw the chicken onto the stage and Alice, not knowing chickens can’t fly, tossed it back, wereupon the audience tore it to pieces.
Bad for the chicken–who probably wondered, as we all do, what it was doing at an Alice Cooper show–but great for rock and roll lore.

Video

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