Book - Martin Popoff - Alice Cooper: Easy Action
“Hello! Hooray! Let the show begin…”
Pretties for You, Easy Action, Love It to Death, Killer, School’s Out, Billion Dollar Babies, Muscle of Love… this astonishing run of albums unleashed upon an unsuspecting public within the span of five years created the legend of Alice Cooper that lives on to this day.
But we’re talking about the original Alice Cooper group here, a band called that with a lead singer also going by that name. In other words, the legend was built by Vincent “Alice Cooper” Furnier, to be sure, but also by Michael Bruce, Glen Buxton, Dennis Dunaway and “platinum god” Neal Smith.
It is all of them working together—along with producer Bob Ezrin—that created the mystique of songs like “I’m Eighteen,” “Is It My Body,” “Desperado,” “Under My Wheels,” “Be My Lover,” “Elected” and “No More Mr. Nice Guy.” And it is all of them working together—along with crack management in Shep Gordon and Joe Greenberg—that created the shock rock buzz that kept the newspapers full of indignation about this band set out to destroy human civilization.
Easy Action: The Original Alice Cooper Band tells the story in meticulous chronological detail, from the band’s early days in Phoenix as The Spiders, through being broke on the Sunset Strip, followed by a career-reviving relocation to a notorious party house on the outskirts of Pontiac, Michigan. Corroborating the improbable sequence of events is a plethora of stories from the band themselves, who explain how the original Alice Cooper group went from politely ignored pariahs in Los Angeles to international Public Enemies No. 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.
Photographic evidence bringing to life the band’s unsettling stage show help explain the outrage, as do the album covers and 45 sleeves, not to the band’s classic magazine ads, which tended to bring out the Alice Cooper group’s sense of humour and flair for a good show biz story. Indeed, listen to the guys and their good-natured explanations behind the mayhem, and it soon becomes apparent that the ghoulish makeup around the singer’s eyes and the boa constrictor around his neck—not to mention the head-choppings, the hangings and the hard rock—were all served up in good fun. Now it’s time for you, dear reader, to join in the fun and see why Alice Cooper was, for a golden moment in time fully