Sunday, October 23, 2011

Will the real Alice Cooper please stand up?

The very first concert I attended was at Blossom Music Center, the year it opened. I won tickets to Judy Collins, so my older sister drove us to Blossom. It was a terrific show. The second concert I attended was Alice Cooper at the Akron Rubber Bowl. My friend Patty called and asked if I would go with her. I told my parents we were going to see some singer named Alice. At the time, I had no clue that Alice Cooper was a bizarre rock band. Color me oh-so-amazed when the performance began!

Of course, my opinion of some idiot prancing around on stage looking like a Halloween freak and calling himself Alice put him in the same category as Tiny Tim. The music was just not my cup of tea.

So when I attended a charity event and had the opportunity to have my picture taken with “Alice Cooper” I quite naturally jumped at the chance. Anyone who has lasted as long as he has in the business can’t be all bad!

Then I decided I should do a little research on the real “Alice Cooper” since I knew little or nothing about the man himself. I discovered a number of truly interesting facts about this long playing musician.
  • His real name is Vincent Damon Furnier. He was born in 1948 in Detroit.
  • The band took on the name Alice Cooper in 1968.
  • He started performing as a solo Alice Cooper in 1975
  • He still pays royalties to the members of the original band for use of the name…enough so that they all live comfortably.
  • He had a run of acute alcoholism but has been rehabilitated and sober for years. He mentors and counsels other addicted musicians who need help.
  • He’s been married since 1976 to a ballerina instructor and choreographer named Sheryl Goddard with whom he has 3 children.
  • He tends to be non-political, but he is a born again Christian.
  • Outside of music, Alice Cooper is an actor, an accomplished golfer, a restaurateur, and a radio DJ.
  • He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011.
  • He hosts an annual charity golf event, the Alice Cooper Celebrity AM Golf Tournament, from which all proceeds go the Solid Rock Foundation, a Christian non-profit organization that helps troubled teens and children. It was formed by Alice Cooper and Chuck Savale in 1995.
And there you have it! The real Alice Cooper isn’t so bad after all. Guess I’ll keep the photo, and maybe even flaunt it a bit!