Circus - November 1972 (USA)

(November 1972)

Originally Published: November 1972

Alice Cooper for President

Whatever possessed Alice to throw his boa constrictor into the political ring?

Author: Howard Bloom

First they dressed him up as a girl. Then they hung him, now they're running him for president. Yup, Alice Cooper, symbol of everything that sets Tricia Nixon's teeth on edge, has abandoned his "School's Out" idea of "blowing school to pieces" and launched a new 45 that expresses a slightly more political ambition. While sixteen horn bleet a hoopla-laced convention-hall tune, Alice hisses with sinister sibilance:

I'm your top prime cut of meat
I'm your choice
I wanna be elected

I'm yankee doodle dandy in
A gold Rolls Royce
I wanna be elected.

Kissinger watch out: What in the world has gotten into the mascara-ed master of murder and mayhem? What's this sudden desire to trade in his hatchet and switchblade for a Hot Line to Moscow? Actually Alice's White House fantasies go back farther than you might suspect. The story of "Elected" started in those distant days during the late Sixties when Alice and the boys were lazing around a house in L. A's Topango Canyon watching TV, feeding their pet lizards, walking 36 miles to visit Frank Zappa's log cabin, and dreaming about becoming famous. Alice came up with a great idea - a song about the presidential race. They'd call it "I Shall Be Elected". But somehow a political tune didn't fit in with the whips, chains and bloody nightgowns they were toying with, and they buried the idea.

Four years later, with another election rolling around, things had changed. Alice had moved from a grubby house in an LA hippy hollow to a modest mansion in Connecticut's swankiest enclave of the super-rich. Three of his LP's had turned gold, and his latest single, "School's Out," had become the biggest selling single international 45 in Warner Brothers history. The time had come to dig up his old presidential visions.

Bouncing toward the Blue Room: While "School's Out" was still chalking up records - sticking to the number one spot on the English charts, squealing into Singapore's Top Ten, and selling 15,000 copies the day it went on sale in Paris -“ "Elected" was being recorded at breakneck pace back in New York City. Alice would spend the day trooping around Virginia with David Cassidy, bopping around with ballet whiz Rudolph Nureyev in Toronto, or winning a ping-pong match with Elton John at his magnificent Malibu beach house, grind through the evening doing a bubble-and-blood-drenched concert, then fly back to New York with Glen Buxton to lay down vocals and guitar tracks, only to soar off to the hinterlands the next day for yet another set of flat-out, bone-busting performances. No wonder when he sings "I got to get the vote," he sounds like he's strangling.

Finally, "Elected" was finished, and they fanned out across the Western Hemisphere for a set of resplendent vacations that would have made the Kennedy's turn green. Alice and his girl friend Cindy took off for Caracas. Mike Bruce bounced off to Arizona. Dennis Dunaway and his old lady winged it down to Jamaica. Neal Smith snuck off to Las Vegas. And Glen Buxton went... to his grandmother's house in Akron, Ohio!

Was this any way to run an election campaign? You bet your gallows is was.

Michael Bennett is much better known for his work on the Broadway stage than for his work with aspiring young rock groups. But Michael, who choreographed West Side Story and whose most recent hit was Follies, has been hired to stage a little thing called Alice At The Palace this coming Spring. That's right, the famous Broadway hall, which has seen some of the world's most renowned vaudeville acts, will now be presenting Alice Cooper in a glorious week of fun and frolic. Not since the days when the Paramount Theater used to hold rock extravaganza has there been such excitement and trepidation on the Great White Way.