Alice Cooper Provides a Solid Rock for Teens During COVID-19 Crisis

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Photo credit: Surreal Sister

(via SPIN) by Katherine Yeske Taylor

Sometimes, something suddenly appears that’s so unsettling, even the king of shock rock himself is startled. That’s what happened when Alice Cooper was forced to cancel his European tour in the midst of something scarier than what Cooper does in his notorious horror rock show.

“It’s strange times. I’ve never lived in a time when one infinitesimal thing that you can’t even see has literally stopped the entire world,” Cooper says, sounding astonished while speaking from his home in Arizona.

Cooper’s wife, Sheryl, is also on the call. She performs in her husband’s show (often portraying a psychotic nurse), and she seems stunned as she recounts the unexpected and abrupt end to their show in Berlin. As she tells it, they were told to “jump off the stage and go directly to our bus in full makeup and costumes.” Almost 24 hours of exhaustive travel later, they made it back to Phoenix – but they “got home, no food in the house, went to the grocery store, no food at the grocery store. What’s happening?”

Read more: https://www.spin.com/2020/04/alice-cooper-provides-a-solid-rock-for-teens-during-the-covid-19-crisis/?fbclid=IwAR3LhmvpJp2DNitKYEVjX6BBPdLpZ4uYbN5cvGLfPmZ16312iBZJLVJjs78

‘We found it rolled up in a tube’: Alice Cooper Discovers Warhol Classic after 40 years

Photo courtesy of Alice Cooper

(via The Guardian) by Edward Helmore

The rock star Alice Cooper has found an Andy Warhol masterpiece that could be worth millions “rolled up in a tube” in a storage locker, where it lay forgotten for more than 40 years.

The work in question is a red Little Electric Chair silkscreen, from Warhol’s Death and Disaster series. Never stretched on a frame, it sat in storage alongside touring artefacts including an electric chair that Cooper used in the early 70s as part of his ghoulish stage show.

According to Shep Gordon, the singer’s longtime manager, Cooper and Warhol became friends at the famous Max’s Kansas City venue in New York City…

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2017/jul/24/alice-cooper-andy-warhol-little-electric-chair

Photograph courtesy Bob Gruen

Songs You May Have Missed #642

Hollywood Vampires: “Welcome to Bushwackers” (2019)

Hollywood Vampires are an Alice Cooper-fronted side project that also features Joe Perry and Johnny Depp.

Their first album’s guest list reads like a debauched Hollywood rock ‘n roll party, which in a sense it was. Paul McCartney, Slash, Joe Walsh, Robby Krieger, Kip Winger, Dave Grohl, Perry Farrell and Brian Johnson all contributed to an album that mainly featured covers from the days when Cooper stalked SoCal with another group of musicians, also dubbed the Hollywood Vampires. That merry band included John Lennon, Harry Nilsson, Keith Moon, Ringo Starr and Mickey Dolenz and their antics were legendary, as you might expect from any merry band containing two drummers.

This Hollywood Vampires is an actual band, and not only do they rock, but they’re aptly named. Alice of course is the king of theatrical rock. And though Johnny Depp might not be a name that would come to mind if you were forming a supergroup, his own theatrical tendencies actually make sense in the context of a band fronted by a guy whose best work always conjured a visual element.

“Welcome to Bushwackers”, from their second release, features yet another guest superstar, Jeff Beck.

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: “Cold Ethyl”

Listen to: “Years Ago/Steven”

Listen to: “The Awakening”

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