January 31st, 2010
11:33 PM ET

One-on-one with Alice Cooper

Alice Cooper told CNN backstage that he thought tonight's show has been amazing.

He loved Pink's performance, whom he introduced with Katy Perry. "I watched Pink tonight and thought, 'Would I do that?' She stole the show. The only way I would do that was if I was on fire."

And then, about the fame monster, Cooper said "Lady GaGa is fearless and she has got the voice to back it up. She'll have an arsenal of hits in five years for sure."

Cooper advises up-and-coming artists to embrace sobriety - the industry has changed he said, and "it's simply not glamorous anymore to be falling down drunk on stage. That was back in old days."

Besides, he added, "[you] can't be a true artist if you're going to do drugs; nobody will hire you if you do. You simply can't depend on musicians using drugs to do tour dates."


Filed under: Grammys

soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. Mud

    Multi Generation Alice Fan:

    I first saw Alice Cooper when I was 14 YO at NY's Academy of Music. I'm 54 now. I saw him three more times as a teen, all the way up to his sold out Madison Square Garden shows.

    I made a point of taking my son to see him whe HE was 14. We were lucky enough to see his Halloween show in NJ. Alice looked and sounded the same as when I was 14, did most of his hits + new material. I couldn't believe he "still had it"! I really expected him to be a shell of his former self, as many other aging rock stars are.

    His shows are unlike anything else out there. I can't tell you how rewarding it was to be with my son, watching & listening to the same music as I did when I was 14.

    Long Live Alice – Please don't stop touring, you are a synapse to my youth!

    February 4, 2010 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Sam

    I'm actually interested in Alice Cooper's opinion on the Grammy Awards show and I appreciate his perspective. As many here have already said he is a class act and one of the nicest guys you'd ever care to meet.

    And to Jen-not to nitpick, but I was at Alice Cooper's restaurant in Phoenix a few years back. I came for the atmosphere, which was good. The food was okay, but the barbequed ribs were overrated. If you really think they're the best then I can only say you need to get out more.

    February 4, 2010 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jack

    Alice, wow, saw him in concert back in 1973, Sheveport, LA. His stage show was over the top back then. People were fainting or running out of the concert hall. I never would have thought I would see him like today or even alive. Alice you do that elevated spin thing from the ceiling on fire, I'm there.

    Jack Fort Worth, TX

    February 4, 2010 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Pens

    Never met the man, but he's been a hero to me through all the stages of my life. Amazing side note: I've never seen SO MANY positive statements about anything from people on CNN before. Just a testament to the fact that Alice truly is a class act.

    February 4, 2010 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  5. john

    I respect Mr Cooper, because what he says is true of the business today...and probably should have been previously.... in the good old days . I'm sorry he had to be presenting with" air head" Katy Perry ...but that's the breaks in Hollywood. I'm sure he would have rather been playing golf at the LA Country Club with his friends....

    February 4, 2010 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Dan G.

    Times have changed for sure. The masses that were allured by the likes of Alice, Ozzy, Freddy, and Mick, for most part were as drugged out of their minds as the performers. It was a drug induced cult. Our youth are learning the perils of abuse. They've seen where it has lead families (all they have to do is watch Ozzy to get the jest of it) and they choose not to do that to their own- therefore chanting about happiness, love and respect- vice being smacked, cracked and cranked out of their minds...

    February 4, 2010 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  7. Skippy

    I had Alice Coopers pictures hanging in my school locker when I was 14 years old. Loved his music then and now. Growing older "with" him has given me a different insight... he is more than just the music. He is a good human being, a super business man and an entertainment personality that I respect. You can't find many to respect these days, so Thank you Alice!

    February 4, 2010 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  8. LGG

    I will join in the Kudos to Alice Cooper.

    I remember, back in the mid 70s, being amazed that he was such a dedicated golfer. After Gerald Ford ceased being President he and Alice would play golf together: a true odd couple.

    I also recall back then a journalist asking Alice why he created his personna. Alice answered "I'm a capitalist. I like to make money". A very honest answer. He was shocking when he hit the scene, but he had the musical chops to back him up. Great albums.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
  9. Kathi Harris-Temple

    Happy Birthday Alice!!!!!!! Thanks for the music!

    February 4, 2010 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
  10. Transplant

    Used to listen to AM as a kid in the 70's, and stayed up late trying to pull in distant stations. I remember catching an interview with him on a Detroit station, and he was fielding calls from fans. One young girl mentioned her Mom used to live near him when she was young. Kid went on to ask why he wanted to be called "Alice". His response (tongue in cheek), was "Would YOU want to be called Vincent?". What has stuck with me, is after this exchange, he asked the kid if her and her Mom would like to get together for dinner sometime, and said he'd get the details off-air. It was obvious he was serious, and I became a bigger fan that night.

    February 4, 2010 at 8:41 am | Report abuse |
  11. Kristi

    My husband and I have seen Alice's show four times and he's never anything less than phenominal. If you go to Phoenix, just mention his name and people have various accounts of him having dinner in their restaurant, mingling with people, etc. He's definitely a man who gets what it's all about.

    February 4, 2010 at 8:25 am | Report abuse |
  12. Merrie

    Happy Birthday Alice!!! I love reading all these posts. It was wonderful seeing him and Sheryl at the Grammys. He gets better and better each and every year. If you haven't checked his music or concerts out in a while you definatly should make a point to do so. Believe me – you won't be disappointed.

    February 4, 2010 at 7:54 am | Report abuse |
  13. ellen gibson

    Alice is a great song writer and a master showman...i can't understand how he has been treated over the years...the man is an ICON, for goodness sakes, he should NOT be presenting awards.....he should be getting them!!!!!!!!
    i love u, Alice......ROCK ON!!!!!!!

    February 4, 2010 at 12:28 am | Report abuse |
  14. Ari

    Saw him at the Grammies. Didn't know who he was. Oh well..

    February 3, 2010 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Steve

    That band had some great players. Bassist Dennis Dunaway was one of my main influences when I was learning to play back then.

    February 3, 2010 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Diane

    I like to read the comments after a story. This is probably the first time EVER that EVERY comment is positive! That says it all about AC!

    February 3, 2010 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Suzanne

    Though many of his hits were in the 70's (with a few in the 80's), Alice STILL is a great performer, tours every year, and he still puts out great albums every year. Check out some of the stuff he has done in the last fifteen or sixteen years such as The Last Temptation, Brutal Planet, and the Eyes of Alice Cooper. The man is still amazing.

    February 3, 2010 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
  18. John

    Alice is an incredible singer / songwriter, and a great guy, very humble and witty. He has never claimed to be a saint, yet he genuinely acts like one, giving of himself and his money to various charities. He also introduced me (a fan who has never met him face to face, despite seeing him in concert over 10 times) to the fine Arts. I am a huge fan of Salvador Dali but would have never heard of him without Alice. Plus he was a great friend to another one of my favorite entertainers: Groucho Marx right up till his death, even paying for part of the famous Hollywood sign restoration in Groucho's honor.

    February 3, 2010 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Jeffer65

    I love all these Alice stories! Been a fan for 33 years. He was at a Haunted House in Green Bay signiing autographs a few years ago, but I didn't have the chance to say much to him. I've nevere heard anyone who has met him say anything bad about him or that he was a jerk.
    Hopefully most of the applause at the Grammys when he and Katie came out to present was for him.

    February 3, 2010 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Richard

    Alice Cooper rocks. I've never had the opportunity to see one of his concerts live, but never missed the chance to view it on video. I know there is no comparison of the two, but still I enjoyed it. I was a huge fan of Much Music in the 80s so I never missed any of his music videos. Aways recorded the Pepsi Power Hour so that I would not miss anything.
    Does anyone remember watching the Muppet Show and seeing Alice Cooper as a guest star. Awsome show. My 5 year old daughter still loves watching that episode over and over. They did the Muppet version of "Schools out".

    February 3, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Kathy

    Hey, if he can befriend the likes of Pat Boone, he can't be all bad! Just kidding...Alice (Vinnie) is a true rocker, a class act, and one of my all time faves.

    February 3, 2010 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  22. scott

    I saw alot of concerts back in the 70's and the Welcome To My Nightmare tour in Philly with Flo & Eddie (Turtles) was one I'll never forget. Showmanship plus, great music, and he definitely does not get the credit of some of his peers of that era. Every once in awhile even now, I'll still listen to Billion Dollar Babies, the album, scratches and all and it's just as good as when it first came out when I got it. Defintely someone who should be in the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame.

    February 3, 2010 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  23. BigAl

    Met Alice in the 80's as he was moving out of our condo building in Chicago for Arizona. Very nice guy. Had his stuff by the freight elevator, and told me some of his Gold Records were not even his! I asked what he meant, and he told me that he took one out of the frame and tried to play it! It turned out to be an old Dean Martin record that they relabeled as his!
    Rock on Alice!

    February 3, 2010 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
  24. marmot

    I'm not too much into theatrics....I get nervous that something will go wrong. But all the heavy stuff was at the beginning of the Grammies, then it was straight-ahead-rock-n-roll (and other genres) on stage. Seems like Alice has it together. Very encouraging words.

    February 3, 2010 at 4:57 am | Report abuse |
  25. Ken Beaulieu

    The music of Alice Cooper has never received the recognition it deserves. The guitar anthem Halo Of Flies is one of the best rockin' tunes of all time, but because they've never been mainstream or, all that popular with the teenybopper 12 to 15 yo girls that drive the music industry with daddy's money, most don't even know the song. It's a pity too! That song is really special. Download it, get it from somewhere and have a listen. You'll see what I mean...

    February 3, 2010 at 12:04 am | Report abuse |
  26. Erick

    Alice Cooper is awesome. Not only that, his radio show is surprisingly funny.

    February 2, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  27. boogie

    gr8 music.
    gr8 guitar work on his albums
    gr8 showmanship

    February 2, 2010 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Nigel

    I loved the Alice Cooper Band in the early 70's and saw them quite a few times. I've met "Alice" a few times in odd locations in Canada and Vegas...he even introduced me to his mother. He's a very nice person. Pleasant and calm. Not at all what I experienced watching his stage performances. He embodies the term "Showman"

    February 2, 2010 at 7:11 pm | Report abuse |
  29. doug peters

    Alice Cooper=Legend!

    February 2, 2010 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Art

    A.C.: You totally Rock!! I grew up in the 70's. What a fantastic artist and performer. His book Golf Monster is a great read, even if you are not a golfer. Great to see old Rock and Rollers still contributing. Thanks A.C.

    February 2, 2010 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Jennifer

    I love AC! He is so nice, is so supportive of the troops! He was so nice to my hubby at the airport in Phoenix, right after 9/11. I think he would be an AWESOME President! I'd vote for him!!!

    February 2, 2010 at 5:33 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Richard Feld

    In the early 70's I was doing sound gigs for R&R bands and I had the pleasure of spending time off stage with Cooper at some theatre in West Virginia. This was the time he was doing "panties" crazy stuff on stage.
    But off stage I found him to be sane, sober and smart and he knew his sports stuff. A nice person also.

    I am not surprised that he has grown to this level.

    February 2, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Al

    """alice refers to sarah palin as "a breath of fresh air", and has stated that water boarding isn't torture."""

    Alice Cooper for President!!!

    February 2, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Thomas

    alice refers to sarah palin as "a breath of fresh air", and has stated that water boarding isn't torture. So if he really is off drugs, he might consider starting again.

    February 2, 2010 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
  35. Kath

    I saw Cooper's "Welcome To My Nightmare" concert in 1975. He was incredible.

    My husband leads tours to Israel, and had his wife on one of his tours. He said she was gracious, kind and loved spending time with everyone on the tour. Alice couldn't come due to scheduling conflicts.

    Alice Cooper is one class act. He deserves to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

    February 2, 2010 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  36. androloma

    If rock musicians aren't doing the drugs they used to, neither are they placing anything on the charts the way they used to. All the biggest selling acts, all the very best music, came from talented artists who were totally ripped up on pharmaceuticals.

    Think of how adolescent Alice was back then... and how adolescent we were as well. Alcohol = bad... but don't deny us the salving solace we know that works.

    February 2, 2010 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Danny

    Back when Alice Cooper and others were drinking and taking drugs, younger fans were doing the same thing to be just like their heroes. At 18 years old, I became a drunk because Jim Morrison was a drunk.

    If guys like Alice Cooer were saying those things back then, lots of baby boomers would have been spared the horrors of alcoholism and drug addiction, especially among would be musicians.

    February 2, 2010 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  38. Anna

    saw Alice Cooper in the early '70's at the old Filmore East in NYC...i've seen quite a few bands in my day but those shows left an impression – the boa, the straight jacket – performance art at its best

    always knew he was a class act especially to be able to write a song like "Only Women Bleed"...thanks Alice for the good memories

    February 2, 2010 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  39. Jen

    Alice Cooper lives here in AZ and we love him- very down to earth and charitable guy. He also owns a fabulous bar/restaraunt in Phoenix called Cooperstown and they have the best BBQ ribs you've ever had!

    February 2, 2010 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
  40. Lindsay

    Alice Cooper's School's Out was a major flashpoint in rock and roll and in my life. His guitar players and recordings not only had the raw power but actual hooks and melodies. I love this guy.

    February 2, 2010 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
  41. Mark H

    I saw him twice back in the "old days" and he looked pretty together to me, even then. 1970-1971.

    February 2, 2010 at 8:02 am | Report abuse |
  42. VortexPuddle

    I've met "Alice" (Vince), and spent an evening with him and Bernie Taupin in a hotel suite in the 1970's, just after Vince came out of rehab. It was a night of several hours spent with them, and very enjoyable. I have the upmost of respect for Alice Cooper. I remember asking him if he had not chosen music for a career, what would he heve done? His answer: "Play professional golf". I also asked him how he felt about alcohol now (6 months prior, I'd been at a party with him and had seen him passed out in the back of a limo) he said (as I drank a beer) Iwouldn't take a drink from that beer you're holding for a million dollars". True stories from the 70's. (I used to work for Warner Brothers Records back then).

    Long live Alice!

    http://www.vortexpuddle.com/

    February 2, 2010 at 3:36 am | Report abuse |
  43. Roberta

    Alice will be 62 this February 4. Happy Birthday Alice. He seems to be in fine health too, moves really well on stage. I love his radio show too, except there's too much music and not enough Alice talking. He's really funny.

    February 1, 2010 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Dennis Ross

    ive been a cooper trooper for 35 years. God bless you AC for rockin and rollin so long.

    Come back to central wisconsin soon!

    February 1, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  45. letmeout

    The Welcome To My Nightmare show was one of the all time best., hands down.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:49 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Joe B

    Alice Cooper never ceases to amaze me. I attend the same church as Al and I can assure you that he is as real as it gets. Nevermind the fact that he shows up with flamed-out cowboy boots. He's got his life and priorities well in order, thanks to many years of trial and error I suppose.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
  47. Sally Rozetta

    @J.Crobuzon:

    The original Alice Cooper band never did actual drugs. They drank...ALOT...but never did drugs. They themselves admitted it in interviews.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Jeffer65

    Alice will be 62 on Thursday. Only one member of the original band (yes the entire band was called Alice Cooper) had drug problems and died back in 1997. The rest are still alive and still musicians.
    Alice went solo in 1975.
    I agree he deserves a lifetime Grammy award, but will probably never get it.
    The R'nR Hall of Fame is a joke. The Moody Blues and many other bands are not in there either, even though they are eligible.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Detroit-Hater Dave

    A few years ago, Alice was playing at a smaller theater in Royal Oak, MI. As he is from the Detroit area, the following here is pretty loyal. I'd wanted to see him for years and was determined to go to the show no matter what. I couldn't get anyone to come with me so I bought a tickete and went alone. Alice blew the crowd away. He is probably at least 65 and he can totally rock. I love the Rolling Stones and have seen them a handful of times in the last 15 years but they show some serious signs of age. Not Alice, he sounds perfect and the show is awesome.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
  50. citizenUSA

    Putting on a show instead of just standing at a mic singing, has always been a philosophy for Vinnie. He really started that trend, (for rock & roll shows at least). Many had light shows but no stage show. I saw most all his major tours and believe me, that is part of what kept bringing me back. Anyone remember the Mummy?

    February 1, 2010 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  51. The Promoter

    j – That was more nearly 40 yrs ago! Time marched on and you need to as well. Alice saw the error of his ways and has been a fine example to many who, through him, learned they can bounce back from bad decisions.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Star

    not prejudiced, J, experienced. And having seen and experienced it first hand, knows what it does. Lots of stars made it big while using, and then crashed and burned. the longest lasting stars have largely been the ones who sought treatment. I love that AC is always ready to help another musician who is risking their gift and their very life by using. I say God bless him.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  53. J.Crobuzon

    He's kinda prejudiced about drugs, considering his original backup band all OD'd and burned out and he ended up in a rubber room, but he became a star and a millionaire while high as a raccoon.

    February 1, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  54. Newman

    Wht isn't Alice Cooper in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?

    February 1, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Brad Pitt

    Alice is a very underrated songwriter and singer and a wonderful kind person who has entertained millions. Here's to him getting a lifetime grammy award some day!!

    February 1, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Mick

    Alice is the epitome of the difference between showmanship and real life. He created shock-rock but is a (now sober) family man offstage.
    A real nice guy who pops up occasionally here on local Phoenix TV to do simple human interest spots about his charity golf events and such.
    Just like Pink last night, Its all show biz people – thats what they do. Case in point – Adam Lambert.

    February 1, 2010 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Jeffer65

    Alice is a class act all the way! He rules.

    Debra- being the theatrical is all part of the performance.

    February 1, 2010 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
  58. Johnny J

    Alice Cooper .....married 30 yrs to the same woman.......on stage, he all business.......off stage.....a human being.....Alice Cooper=Class Act

    February 1, 2010 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
  59. Jim

    They don't have to be, they choose to be. All in the name of giving the audience more bang for their buck.

    February 1, 2010 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  60. Debra R

    I'm always amazed that people who can sing have to be so theatrical....

    February 1, 2010 at 7:40 am | Report abuse |

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