The Strange Case of Alice Cooper

Kim P Moody

Album cover for School's OutAlice Cooper was, and still is, something a bit different. School’s Out, with its dark chords and and heavy rhythm was a contrast to the old hippy, peace and love stuff of the sixties and the glittery campness of glam rock, which was just making an appearance.

Vincent Furnier’s rock career started in 1964 singing with The Earwigs in Phoenix, Arizona. The band changed its name a couple of times and he changed his name to Alice Cooper, taking the name of the group, when it was re-named from Nazz in 1968. They needed a gimmick and the image of a sweet little girl with an evil secret was just what was needed. Stories like Alice being a reincarnated witch and the 1969 ‘chicken incident’ at the Toronto Rock and Roll Revival, set the scene.

After a series of commercially unsuccessful releases they hit the big time in 1971 with I’m Eighteen, and even bigger in 1972, with School’s Out. Alice Cooper’s stage performances, including mock executions, shocked all who saw them; parents, politicians and decency campaigners tried to get the UK performances banned. Although the video of School’s Out was banned by the BBC, Alice Cooper’s popularity soared.

Alice Cooper in 2007, still rockingThey were at their peak in the mid 70s, and Alice Cooper has a strong following today. School’s Out is still a rockers’ favourite and is currently used in a TV advertising campaign for MasterCard.

Alice Cooper’s discography and filmography can be found on Wikipedia, together with details of more than 40 years entertaining his fans. Alice Cooper continues to rock. Yeah! Rock on, Alice!

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2 Responses

  1. I first came across Alice Cooper in a Mystery Movie starring the Snoop Sisters – two elderly ladies who got mixed up in all sorts of trouble. I think it was the juxtaposition of the prim old ladies and a man with vast amounts of makeup on that fixed it in my memory (I have no idea what the storyline was now).

  2. Sounds good, I didn’t realise Alice Cooper was in films. What a lot I’m learning with this site!

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