In September of 1970 the band called Alice Cooper had been living out of their suitcases for a year; playing gigs across the country nonstop since leaving California in 1969. Choosing to put down roots in just outside of Detroit, in the center of the Midwest rust belt, proved to be one of the best decisions the band ever made, both creatively and financially. With two commercially unsuccessful albums behind them, Michael Bruce, Glen Buxton, Vince Furnier (aka Alice Cooper), Dennis Dunaway and Neal Smith were at the threshold of turning their music into Gold and Platinum for the first time. In the dawn of a decade bookended by The Beatles and Punk Rock, Alice Cooper exploded as a revolutionary force in theatrical American Rock ‘n’ Roll.
Alice Cooper in the 1970s: Decades, a new book by UK-based author Chris Sutton explores the story of Alice Cooper from their early years as band of five guys through to the end of the decade, when Alice launched a solo career after the band dissolved.
The original band called Alice Cooper released its sixth studio album, Billion Dollar Babies, on this date, February 25th, in 1973. Billion Dollar Babies, which went to the Number One position on every chart, is a very special album for me. Favorite Song: “No More Mr. Nice Guy.”
Here I am on one of Alice Cooper Drummer Neal Smith’s drum kits. All of Neal’s Gold and Platinum Albums earned for sales of Alice Cooper band records are on the walls behind me. Billion Dollar Babies is in there, somewhere.
Image Courtesy of Dennis Dunaway (Circa 1985, Click Photo to Enlarge)
How happy does Nikki Sixx look in the picture above, where he is book-ended by Dennis Dunaway (Alice Cooper) and Kub Coda (Brownsville Station) on the left and Neal Smith (Alice Cooper) and Joe Bouchard (Blue Oyster Cult) on the right? Nikki’s arms appear to be virtually un-inked and I’ve never seen Neal and Dennis with shorter hair, so you can tell this photo is from another era entirely. Still, it’s a fun blast from the past. Motley Crue Bassist and Renaissance Man Nikki Sixx was born on this day, December 11th, in 1958. Happy Birthday, Nikki!