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Alice Cooper Nominated for Songwriters Hall Of Fame

Eighteen Forever: In Conversation With Rock Legend Alice Cooper


Arguably the singular embodiment of rock’n’roll’s darker side, Alice Cooper – as both band, initially, and later as an individual – deftly meshed elements of psychedelia, vaudeville, horror theatrics, camp and pure turbo-charged rock fury, creating an indelible mark on contemporary popular music throughout his five-decade career. While Cooper pre-dates glam and glitter rock, heavy metal, punk, new wave and gothic rock, his influence looms large within each to this day. Popular artists spawned in Cooper’s wake – from the New York Dolls, Kiss, the Sex Pistols and the Cramps to the Plasmatics, Misfits, White Zombie and Marilyn Manson – are zealous and legion. For pushing the envelope in virtually every capacity, providing the suitably nightmarish score to every rebellious teen’s troubled interior monologue and routinely exploring how far “too far” could ever go, Alice Cooper is justifiably hailed as a legend.

But there’s another aspect to Alice Cooper that, until recently, has been largely overshadowed by the macabre mythology. While his status as a pioneer of shock, sensationalism and spectacle in the annals of rock’n’roll is undisputable, Cooper is also a gifted songwriter of the highest order. Beneath the war paint and leather, Alice Cooper is responsible for some remarkable, enduring music that has defined eras and inspired generations. And while he’s renowned for such classic, barn-burning anthems as “School’s Out,” “Welcome to My Nightmare,” “No More Mr. Nice Guy” and “I’m Eighteen,” Cooper has also periodically showcased a more nuanced, softer side, notably with the vulnerable “How You Gonna See Me?,” the unapologetically romantic “You and Me” and the poignant “Only Women Bleed.”

In November, the Songwriters Hall of Fame acknowledged Alice Cooper as a nominee for induction, alongside fellow performing songwriters as Tom Waits, Jimmy Cliff, Chrissie Hynde and more. And on the precipice of his 70th year, Cooper continues to make music. His 27th studio album, Paranormal, was released this past July, featuring cameos from members of Deep Purple, ZZ Top and U2, as well as original Alice Cooper band members Neal Smith, Dennis Dunaway and Michael Bruce. Cooper continues to tour the globe, bringing his signature brand of rock’n’roll to the masses.

In honor of his Songwriters Hall of Fame nomination accolade, BMI posed a few questions to the man behind the make-up about his storied career, creative process, views on music from the Beatles to the Sex Pistols, and much more.


1 comment to Alice Cooper Nominated for Songwriters Hall Of Fame

  • Tim Aebi

    It should read “How You Gonna See Me Now”. But, I agree, the man has been a part of some fabulous songs. My daughter (a soph at Boston University) made me a CD for my car – she included “Only Women Bleed” – she’s an avowed feminist, and realizes how much I love Alice – she gets that tune. I love the fact we can share that. Rock on Alice- I dig you so much……