Super Duper Alice Cooper is a new documentary film due for release in the Spring of 2014 that will be previewed at the Tribeca Film Festival in NYC in April. While the film’s storyline seems to be based on Alice’s time fronting the band from whom he would eventually take his name as a solo artist, it appears, sadly, that it also focuses fairly tightly on the myth and legend of Alice (AKA Vince Furnier) as an individual, rather than on the story of the band which was made up of five individuals. Not that the filmmaker isn’t allowed to make the film he wants, if he wants to just focus on Alice. But it’s like every time somebody refers to the band called Alice Cooper as a “He” it just makes me want to scream. And this is kind of more of the same. Alice Cooper was a band.
I have heard that Dennis Dunaway and Neal Smith, as well as producer, Bob Ezrin were interviewed for the film although there are no on camera appearances. But at least fans will get to see classic performance footage of the original band including Dennis, Neal, Michael Bruce and the late Glen Buxton. This would be my main motivation for seeing the film.
Alice Cooper fans worldwide rejoice! Marshall Blonstein’s Audio Fidelity is releasing “…one of the best rock ‘n’ roll records of all time” – the band called Alice Cooper’s classic album Billion Dollar Babies on Hybrid SACD (Super Audio CD) on February 4, 2014! As a bonus, along with the meticulously reproduced artwork, enclosed in every CD is the very collectible replicated Billion Dollar Bill that was Included in each original vinyl album.
With Billion Dollar Babies, the band called Alice Cooper refined the raw grit of their earlier work in favor of a slightly more polished sound, resulting in a mega-hit album that reached the top of the US and UK album charts. It’s impossible to overstate how popular the band had become by the time their sixth album was released. The album is brilliant, decadent and encapsulated all the celebrity trashiness of the ‘70s only three years into the decade.
Song for song, Billion Dollar Babies is probably the original Alice Cooper group’s finest and strongest work. The album’s singles “Elected,” “Hello Hooray,” “Billion Dollar Babies” and “No More Mr. Nice Guy” all became hits on the Billboard Hot 100. Also included are a pair of perennial concert standards – the disturbing necrophilia ditty “I Love the Dead” and the chilling macabre of “Sick Things.”
After the album was released, the band embarked on a tour which broke the US box office records previously held by The Rolling Stones. The show climaxed with a guillotine execution of Alice. The album and the tour made the band into the world’s preeminent pied pipers of teenage trash culture and the most successful rock band ever to be loathed by American parents.
“Other than the original ‘Alice Cooper Band’ being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame in 2011, our second biggest achievement was when our album Billion Dollar Babies went to Number #1 in all three music trade magazines at the same time in April of 1973. Number #1 in Billboard, Number #1 in Record World and Number #1 in Cash Box. We had hoped it would sell Gold or Platinum as a follow up to the success of our album School’s Out, but a Number #1 album was something that was totally unexpected. Over the years the title track “Billion Dollar Babies” has become my signature song because of the recognizable drum intro.”
– Neal Smith, Alice Cooper drummer and founding member
“I remember we were out on the road when the album finally came out in February 1973. I listened to it in my hotel room and just got this really big smile. I was thinking, ‘It’s amazing, we’re really pulling this off’. The album was very, very unique and very, very different. I was really proud of the songs, especially ‘No More Mr Nice Guy’, ‘Billion Dollar Babies’ and ‘Generation Landslide’.”
– Michael Bruce, Alice Cooper guitarist/keyboardist and founding member
1. Hello Hooray
2. Raped and Freezin’
4. Billion Dollar Babies
5. Unfinished Sweet
6. No More Mr. Nice Guy
7. Generation Landslide
8. Sick Things
10. I Love the Dead
Produced by Bob Ezrin, Mastered by Steve Hoffman at Stephen Marsh Mastering.
Neal Smith, drummer for the original Band called Alice Cooper sent me the link to this video a couple of days ago and told me it was a clip he had never even seen before. Knowing how many fans of that awesome band I have as readers, I knew I had to post this as soon as I could get it together. This clip is especially great because you get to hear Neal and guitarist Michael Bruce have a very candid conversation about whether Neal or bassist Dennis Dunaway will provide the voice of the little girl in the song’s introduction. Neal twirls his sticks a lot and Kachina the snake also makes an appearance! Enjoy!
Gibson.com has just posted a decent article entitled Elected! A Brief History of Alice Cooper’s Amazing Guitarists that I mention only because the first two guys profiled are original band guitarists Glen Buxton and Michael Bruce. Check it out if you like at This Link. They’ve also posted a terrific video of the band doing “Public Animal #9” from their appearance on Germany’s Beat Club, that actually features “screen time” for other members of the band besides Alice, thank Christ.
Alice Cooper’s latest solo release, Welcome 2 My Nightmare, is getting a lot of attention currently, due in large part to the fact that original Alice Cooper Band members, Neal Smith, Dennis Dunaway and Michael Bruce collaborated with Alice on three of the album’s songs. Neal Smith’s writing contribution, “I’ll Bite Your Face Off” is the first single and here’s the video, embedded below for your enjoyment. While this video is a live shoot from Alice’s ongoing tour, the audio track is from the studio recording and features Neal on drums, Dennis on bass and Michael on guitar. In case you’re curious and do not yet own the album, the other two tracks on which original band members collaborated/play are “Runaway Train” (co-written by Dennis) and “When Hell Comes Home” (co-written by Michael Bruce).
Alice Cooper’s long-awaited sequel to his 1975 classic Welcome to My Nightmare comes out on September 13, 2011, but Alice will preview select tracks in their entirety and offer his personal commentary on his syndicated Nights with Alice Cooper radio show on Friday, August 19th. Coop kicks off the program with the world debut of W2MN’s first single, “I’ll Bite Your Face Off” (written by original Alice Cooper drummer Neal Smith) and he’ll pick other favorites from the 14-track album, including “Runaway Train” and “I Gotta Get Outta Here” to tease and talk about during the show. W2MN, recorded with longtime collaborator Bob Ezrin (who produced the original multi-platinum Welcome To My Nightmare album in 1975), picks up right where they left off.
On Friday’s edition of Nights with Alice Cooper, Alice dishes on the array of collaborators on the new CD, including original Alice Cooper members Dennis Dunaway, Michael Bruce and Neal Smith (reunited on three tracks!); global pop superstar Ke$ha, and legendary Alice and Lou Reed guitarist Steve Hunter, who is part of Alice’s current touring band and featured prominently on the first Nightmare album. During the five-hour program, the show will follow its normal format in addition to airing the world premiere tracks. Nights with Alice Cooper is broadcast on more than 125 affiliate stations in the US, Canada, Australia and the UK. To find the station in your area visit This Link.
Alice Cooper in 1972: Neal, Alice, Michael, Dennis and Glen
Hello, Hurray! Fans of the original 1970s band Alice Cooper are about to have one of their long-hoped-for dreams come true. The band’s four surviving members, guitarist Michael Bruce, bassist Dennis Dunaway, drummer Neal Smith and vocalist Alice Cooper (lead guitarist Glen Buxton passed away in 1997) spent two days in September at a NYC studio recording three original tracks for Cooper’s next solo album. Rumored to be a follow-up to Cooper’s first solo effort, 1975’s Welcome To My Nightmare, the album is due to be released in the fall of 2011. These sessions were the first to feature all members of the original Alice Cooper band since the group recorded its 1974 swan song, Muscle of Love.
At the board for these sessions was studio legend Bob Ezrin, who not only produced the band’s commercial breakthrough, 1971’s Love it To Death (featuring the hit single “I’m Eighteen”), but who was also responsible for producing several of their other classic hits, including School’s Out and their most popular and commercially successful album, 1973’s Billion Dollar Babies. Ezrin has also produced many solo albums for Alice Cooper the individual since the band’s breakup. Ezrin, whose exhaustive body of work includes landmark albums such as Pink Floyd’s The Wall, has been quoted as saying that the work he did with the Alice Cooper Band in the seventies gave him his career. It is also rumored that rock photographer Bob Gruen, who took many photos of the original band back in the day – including promotional shots for Muscle of Love featuring the band dressed in identical sailor suits – made an appearance to visually document the band hanging out in the studio.
Those Alice Cooper band devotees still hoping for a reunion that would see the band perform live can hold out hope that Smith, Dunaway and Bruce make good on rumors that they will join Cooper this coming December in Phoenix, AZ for his annual Christmas Pudding charity concert event.
Alice Cooper was a Band: Michael Bruce, Neal Smith, Vince Furnier, Dennis Dunaway and Glen Buxton
Yeah, I know the nominations were announced yesterday, but when I heard that Alice Cooper had been nominated for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame after being snubbed for the past seventeen years, I wanted to make sure I had the story straight as to whether this was a nomination for the band, or just the individual. Because if Alice Cooper the solo artist was nominated before the band that made it possible for him to even have a solo career, I would seriously never, ever stop throwing up. I talked to my friend Neal Smith first thing this morning and he assured me that the nomination is for the band, to which I can only say, it’s about fucking time. The original band called Alice Cooper includes Neal (drums), Dennis Dunaway (bass), Michael Bruce (guitar) and late guitarist Glen Buxton, as well as vocalist Vince Furnier, who changed his name legally to Alice Cooper when the band broke up in 1974.
“Before there was Ozzy Osbourne, Marilyn Manson or KISS, there was Alice Cooper, the original self-proclaimed “rock villain.” Born Vincent Furnier, Cooper and his mighty band of the same name – lead guitarist Glen Buxton, rhythm guitarist Michael Bruce, bass player Dennis Dunaway and drummer Neal Smith – pioneered the dark spectacle of heavy metal with their huge blues-rock sound and extravagant stage show. Drawing from horror movies and vaudeville, Cooper brought a new level of visual theatrics to arenas with guillotines, electric chairs, boa constrictors and fake blood; their 1973 tour broke box-office records previously held by the Rolling Stones, and raised the bar for major rock tours. What made it stick were some of the catchiest, most reckless hard-rock songs of all time: “Eighteen,” “School’s Out,” “No More Mr. Nice Guy.” Along with the New York Dolls and David Bowie, Alice Cooper was a starting point for the glam rock of the Seventies; it’s impossible to imagine the hair metal of the Eighties without them; you can hear and see the band’s influence in bands from the Sex Pistols to Guns n’ Roses. The original lineup split in the mid-Seventies, and singer Cooper would continue on with an evolving lineup; in the meantime, the pure shock value of America’s first shock rockers has faded — but their legacy is safe.”
My only problem with this statement is how the first sentence still makes it sound like Alice Cooper was one guy with a backing band, but I guess making an effort to get the story straight is too much to ask. Congratulations guys and good luck!
Promotional Band Shot From Billion Dollar Babies Cover Session
The four surviving members of one of the most influential and legendary American bands of the Seventies, Alice Cooper will reunite for three days at the upcoming Chiller Theatre convention taking place at the Hilton in Parsippany, New Jersey from April 16th to 18th, 2010. Please note that Alice Cooper, Michael Bruce, Dennis Dunaway and Neal Smith will appear for signing sessions and photos only and will not be performing. So if you’re heading to Chiller be sure to bring along your vinyl copies of School’s Out, Killer, Love It To Death, Billion Dollar Babies and Muscle of Love and get them signed by the band!
Signing hours are as follows:
Friday – 6 PM – 11 PM
Saturday – 11 AM – 7 PM
Sunday – 11 AM – 5 PM
The Hilton Parsippany is located at One Hilton Court, Parsippany, New Jersey 07054. While the hotel is likely sold out for rooms that weekend, you can call 973-267-7373 for more information on the hotel’s location and visit this link for more information on the convention.