The world of hard rock has produced many legends over the years, and one name that has withstood the test of passing time is Alice Cooper. The famed musician has been in the news lately due to the release of his most current single, Don’t Give Up.The song was inspired by the recent events that are still happening with Covid-19, and it has stirred up quite a positive response from music lovers from all genres. What’s most inspiring about this song is the fact that Cooper is still making good music at the age of 72 years. Over the span of his career, Cooper has made quite a fortune, amassing a net worth of $50 million dollars. Here’s a closer look into how he achieved his success.
Born Vincent Damon Furnier on February 4, 1948 in Detroit, Michigan, Alice Cooper comes from a religious background. Cooper’s father was a lay-preacher in the Church of Jesus Christ denomination, and the musician himself was an active church member in his youth. Cooper became sickly when he was young, and this forced the family to move to Phoenix, Arizona. This is where Cooper attended high school and where the Alice Cooper band would eventually form. On his high school yearbook, Cooper wrote that he wanted to be “a million record seller”. At the time the yearbook was published, Cooper was already on his way. He had a band and they had regular gigs. They had even released a single already. When they finished high school, the next logical step for the group was to move to LA, which they did, and the rest was history.
Alice Cooper’s high school band was called the Earwigs. When the Earwigs first performed during their high school talent show in 1964, only one member of the band actually knew how to play an instrument. They performed parodies of Beatles songs and received an overwhelming response from the crowd. They were hooked and decided they would become an actual band. Each member, including Cooper, bought instruments from the local pawnshop and proceeded to learn. They renamed themselves the Spiders soon after; by their graduation in 1966, they had released their second single, which became a hit. They found themselves making frequent trips to Los Angeles to do shows. After a couple of band member replacements and band name changes, the band finally moved to LA by the end of 1967.
The name Alice Cooper was born out of need for a new name, but it was also the result of the band’s ingenuity. In 1975, the musician officially adopted the Alice Cooper name in order to avoid legal problems with name ownership later on. This turned out to be one of the best moves in Cooper’s career.
By 1968, Alice Cooper had a solid brand image for the band and was signed by Frank Zappa for a three-album deal. They released their first album in 1969, Pretties for You, featuring the psychedelic and eclectic sound that Cooper would be remembered for. Because of the band’s stage persona and various antics and accidents that were sensationalized by the tabloids, the Alice Cooper band basically invented a new rock subgenre—shock rock. Alice Cooper was unlike anything else that came on stage during that time.
The shock appeal didn’t always work out for the group, however. The band’s progressive brand struggled during the early years, especially when everyone was still into peace and love during the late 60s. Things took a turn for the best after the release of Love It to Death in 1970. From then on, Alice Cooper and his band had a series of highly successful album and record sales and tours. He released a total of 7 albums with the band. After he went solo in 1974, Alice Cooper released 20 albums from 1975 until the most recent in 2020. He’s also done over 35 tours throughout his whole career. Alice Cooper was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011.
Apart from his music, Cooper made profitable pursuits in other areas of the entertainment industry. As early as the 70s, he started appearing in various television shows after returning to Los Angeles. Cooper has also appeared in a number of acting projects—movies, TV movies, and TV series. His songs have been featured in over 130 soundtracks, and he also has various writer and composer credits. He has done voice acting too.
Alice Cooper has been nominated for numerous awards in the industry and has won many of them. He has always found success in music, but he used music as a vehicle to find success in other ways as well. In 2004, he started a radio show called Nights with Cooper. He has published 2 autobiographies that have received generally positive reviews. He is a big fan of sports, particularly golf. He has appeared in several commercials for the Callaway Golf brand and has also appeared on A Golfer’s Travels. Alice Cooper has even authored a comic book issue through Marvel Comics and written for Bongo Comics’ Bart Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror.
Alice Cooper’s longstanding career has brought controversy, drama, and trouble into his life, but it has also led him to so much success and his substantial $50 million net worth. He’s a recovered alcoholic, a golf enthusiast. He has done more in his lifetime than many ever could. And he’s not done quite yet. He’s been with his wife for years, and they have had their struggles together. But they have stayed loyal to each other and have brought up three children together. Alice Cooper is now a born Christian, and with everything he’s gone through, he believes his life has finally gone full circle.
Written by Allen Lee
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