(October 30, 1971)
Originally Published: October 30, 1971
Alice Cooper, the rather unusual American "entertainer", flew into London last Thursday accompanied by his snake.
The couple gave a visually zany, but otherwise straighter than straight press conference at Heathrow Airport, where Mr Alice denied rumours that he bit the head off chickens, and burst balloons filled with ground-worms over festival audiences. "But sometimes I get so carried away with Alice, I don't know what I'm doing," he said.
After his brief stay, Alice flies back to the States, and then returns to London to play a concert with the Alice Cooper Band, and Arthur Brown at the Rainbow Theatre, on November 7.
And then there was the limbless soul singer. He was suspended in front of his microphone on a piano wire, and if he got too much of a sway on, well, it kind of spoiled things.
If that was weird, said Alice Cooper, brushing his hands through hair of well-used Brillo pads, then The Frog was a New York character who had no legs and a hunchback, and who rolled cigarettes with just his mouth, and then ate them. Well Alice dug him, 'cause he booked them to play at his famous party at the Ambassador Hotel... And so went the Press conference for Cooper, a tragic figure in laddered black tights, at Heathrow Airport, last week.
It could well have been Bobby Moore sat talking to a room full of reporters and members of the Kinney Empire And Colonial Task Force, or even Frank McLintock (bless his woollen socks). You see, Alice was so, so straight... in fact, it was London's Press who worried your Raver... "Do you bite heads off chickens?" asked one well-cropped scoop, close to a fit of slobbering. "No, I don't," answered Alice, stroking his snake... "Do you then strip naked on stage?" the reported continued - "No, I don't."
Another dutiful report then attempted to make Alice "go spare" right there and then... You see Alice is two people, there's Alice, and Alice, and when Alice becomes Alice all Hell is let loose... The straight Alice refused to become The Alice, despite the pleading reporter. "If I became Alice, I wouldn't be responsible for what happened."
It was obvious that if he'd have changed into Alice, he would have bitten the tongues out of the heads of Kinney's mouthpiece Des Brown, and journalist Keith Altham, who persisted in asking questions on a theme of the importance of Cooper's music, the intrinsic qualities of going mad, and how Cooper was helping to change the course and ethics of Western Civilization as we know it today... Yawn.
Alice's one fit of how-you-say, temper, came when he took one of the pale green crayoned carnations (a gift in good taste) and beat it about the petals. Otherwise he gave as good as he got with seemingly well-rehearsed humour, pathos, emotion, amateur dramatics, and sensual lip and eye movements... General feeling on the Kinney bus home was one of frustration as a young dazzler served champagne as the coach drifted on a close 190 m.p.h. over rough pot-holes... well, that's showbiz.