Alice Cooper (Vincent Damon Furnier)

portrait of Alice Cooper
2007 Scream Awards, 19 October 2007

Born: 4 February 1948, Allen Park, Michigan

Furnier attended Washington Elementary and a middle school at Detroit, then moved to Phoenix, Arizona where he attended Cortez High School. He was on the cross-country track team and formed a band for a school talent show. (They faked Beatles songs, later learned the instruments.) The band graduated in 1966, had a local hit record, and started to play gigs at Los Angeles, first as The Spiders, then as The Nazz, which they changed when they learned that Todd Rundgren was already using that name, and ended with Alice Cooper. They released two unsuccessful albums on Frank Zappa's label. Fed up with indifferent LA audiences the band moved to Detroit in 1970, the same year Warner Bros. Records bought their contract from Zappa. They hit the charts with "I'm Eighteen" and continued to chart through 1973 but the band broke up the next year. Furnier, now using the Alice Cooper name himself, returned to LA and started appearing on television. In 1975, during the "Welcome to my Nightmare" tour, he was drunk on stage, tripped over a footlight, and fell into the pit, and split his head open. Ten years later he stopped drinking completely. He has produced 25 solo albums and has a syndicated evening rock show called "Nights with Alice Cooper". The band owned the name, his annual payments to his original band members are apparently sufficient for them to live comfortably. Off stage he's a registered Republican, lived next door to Barry Goldwater at Paradise Valley, Arizona, golfs with a four handicap, is a born-again Christian (since getting off the bottle), and has been married to his wife since 1976.

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