Alice Cooper pioneered a grandly theatrical brand of hard rock that was designed to shock. Drawing equally from horror movies, vaudeville, and garage rock, the group created a stage show that featured electric chairs, guillotines, fake blood, and boa constrictors. He continues to tour regularly, performing shows worldwide with the dark and horror-themed theatrics that he’s best known for.
With a schedule that includes six months each year on the road, Alice Cooper brings his own brand of rock psycho-drama to fans both old and new, enjoying it as much as the audience does. Known as the architect of shock-rock, Cooper (in both the original Alice Cooper band and as a solo artist) has rattled the cages and undermined the authority of generations of guardians of the status quo, continuing to surprise fans and exude danger at every turn, like a great horror movie, even in an era where CNN can present real life shocking images.
Alice has been touring consistently, year in and year out, averaging over 80 concerts annually, both within the USA and internationally, with his band which features the three guitar attack of guitarists Ryan Roxie, Nita Strauss, and Tommy Henriksen, plus the rhythm section of drummer Glen Sobel and longtime bassist Chuck Garric.
As he heads back out on the concert trail with his own band or with The Hollywood Vampires, Cooper insists he’s still motivated to continue touring and recording albums, as well as making time for his most recent projects, including The Hollywood Vampires, as well as narrating the CD/interactive iPhone & iPad app “Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood,’ an updating of the iconic story and classic music masterpiece, and also contributing guest vocals to Wish You Were Here Symphonic, an orchestral re-imagining of Pink Floyd’s classic music.
For the Hollywood Vampires, Cooper and good friend Johnny Depp were joined by Joe Perry, an old friend of both, and producer Bob Ezrin, and the recording became a tribute to Alice’s original 1970’s original Hollywood Vampires drinking club, featuring a host of special guest appearances. That album and their 2015 tour offer fans new songs, including the single “Bad As I Am,” as well as versions of classics like “My Generation,” “Whole Lotta Love,” and a “School’s Out”/“Another Brick in the Wall” medley.
For the 2016 release Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood, Alice Cooper serves as the narrator for a combination of classical music, visual wonder, and digital play that brings an invigorating new perspective to Prokofiev’s classic. Audiences of all ages are able to experience the legendary story of the resourceful Russian boy in multiple formats as well as an immersive, interactive experience of an iPad and iPhone app designed especially for children.
Marking the 40th anniversary of Pink Floyd’s seminal album Wish You Were Here, 2016 also saw the release of an orchestral reworking of that Pink Floyd classic, Wish You Were Here Symphonic, recorded at Abbey Road Studios, where the original album was recorded. Alice Cooper contributes guest vocals on ‘Wish You Were Here’ and ‘Welcome to the Machine,’ with Rick Wakeman on keyboards, the London Orion Orchestra, and guitarists Stephen McElroy and Dave Fowler from Australian Pink Floyd.
As if that wasn’t enough, “Nights With Alice Cooper,” Alice’s nightly radio show, continues to air in nearly 100 cities in the USA, Canada, Australia, and the UK. The five-hour-long show features his favorite classic rock songs along with his insider anecdotes about many of the artists.
Cooper was born in Detroit Michigan and moved to Phoenix with his family. The Alice Cooper band formed while they were all in high school in Phoenix, and was discovered in 1969 by Frank Zappa in Los Angeles, where he signed them to his record label. Their collaboration with young record producer Bob Ezrin led to the break-through third album “Love It to Death” which hit the charts in 1971, followed by “Killer,” “School’s Out,” ”Billion Dollar Babies,” and “Muscle of Love.” Each new album release was accompanied by a bigger and more elaborate touring stage show. 1974 saw the release of a “Greatest Hits” album, and then Cooper, in 1975, released his first solo album, “Welcome to My Nightmare” in 1975, accompanied by the legendary groundbreaking theatrical Welcome to My Nightmare concert tour.
Associated with that album and tour was the ground-breaking network TV special Alice Cooper: The Nightmare. Other films and television appearances include The Muppet Show, Mae West’s last film Sextette, Roadie, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearst Club Band and appearances on The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson and Tom Snyder’s Tomorrow Show. The original band also made an appearance in the movie Diary of a Mad Housewife in 1979, filmed the full-length feature film Good To See You Again Alice Cooper, and Alice appeared in a 1972 episode of The Snoop Sisters.
Alice’s solo career skyrocketed in the late 1970s, with a succession of hit singles, including “You & Me,” and classic albums, including “Lace And Whiskey” and “From The Inside,” and bigger and even more elaborate concert tours.
In the ‘80’s Cooper explored different sounds, highlighted by the new wave album “Flush The Fashion,” the heavy metal “Constrictor” and “Raise Your Fist And Yell,” and then 1989’s melodic hard rock album “Trash,” which featured the massive hit single “Poison” and became his biggest-selling album and singles worldwide. During this period Alice also appeared in the horror films Monster Dog and John Carpenter’s Prince of Darkness, and recorded songs for the soundtracks to Roadie, Class of 1984, Friday the 13 Part VI: Jason Lives and Wes Craven’s Shocker.
Cooper’s most memorable movie appearance was as himself in Wayne’s World in 1991. He also played (fittingly) Freddy Krueger’s wicked step-father in Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare, and appeared on Gene Wilder’s TV series Something Wilder as well as on That ‘70’s Show. The ’90s also saw the release of the albums “Hey Stoopid,” “The Last Temptation,” and “Fistful of Alice,” a live album.
1999 saw the release of the definitive historical 4 CD box set “The Life & Crimes of Alice Cooper,” from Rhino/Warners.
Since the turn of the new Millenium, Cooper has continued to be very productive and busy, writing, recording and releasing the albums “Brutal Planet,” “Dragon Town,” “The Eyes of Alice Cooper,” “Dirty Diamonds,” “Along Came a Spider,” and 2011’s “Welcome 2 My Nightmare,” plus “Old School 1964-1974,” a box set celebrating the original band.
He also wrote and published a memoir, “Golf Monster,” in 2007, which tracked his life from childhood to rock stardom, and his journey from alcoholic to golf addict, and was featured in the Tim Burton film “Dark Shadows” in 2012.
Alice’s 2011 album “Welcome 2 My Nightmare” featured a return to his partnership with longtime collaborator, producer Bob Ezrin, as well as contributions from former original Alice Cooper bandmates Dennis Dunaway, Neal Smith and Michael Bruce, and a return to the themes of the iconic 1975 “Welcome To My Nightmare” album.
Alice, Dennis, Neal, Michael, and the late Glen Buxton (posthumously) were inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame in March 2011.
2014 saw the release of “Super Duper Alice Cooper,” a documentary detailing the arc of Alice’s rollercoaster ride in the world of rock superstardom. Directed and produced by the same team from Banger Films that delivered the award-winning Iron Maiden and Rush documentaries, it premiered at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival in NYC and has since been released on Blu-Ray and DVD by Eagle Rock Entertainment
With his influence on rock & roll long since acknowledged, there is little that Alice Cooper hasn’t achieved in his remarkable career, including platinum albums, sold-out tours and any number of honors and career achievement awards.
Alice performed the part of “King Herrod” in NBC’s live broadcast of “Jesus Christ Superstar” on April 1st, 2018.