Celebrating Seniors - Happy 67th Alice Cooper!

Born as Vincent Damon Furnier 67 years ago on this day in 1948 (Feb 4th) in Detroit, the lead singer of the Alice Cooper band changed his name to the name of the band in 1975, and went solo.

alice cooper band, alice cooper birthday, nee vincent damon furnier, hit rock songs, 1970s hit singles, schools out, love it to death, welcome to my nightmare, sheryl goddard, shock rock, senior citizen, longevity (Alice Cooper Band 2012 Photo: Kreepin Deth)

Although known for his horror/shock rock style, and trademark dark eyeliner makeup ringing his eyes (inspired by Bette Davis in the film Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?), Alice Cooper is an eloquent and charming philanthropist and born-again Christian off stage and in his private life.

Alice Cooper started performing at age 16 with a group of band mates in 1964; by 1970 "Alice Cooper" the band had achieved Top 35 success on Billboard with their third album Love it to Death. Their live performance theatrics included a boa constrictor, electric chairs, and outrageous costumes. Below, Alice Cooper sings School's Out. live in 1972.

The group's #1 single Schools Out debuted in 1972 and has since been a June favourite of elementary and high school students for decades. By 1974 the band's aggressive touring schedule and demanding on-stage antics took their toll and they agreed to take a hiatus from the band and each other. Soon after, Vincent moved to LA and started appearing as a guest star on television shows and made-for-tv movies.

In 1975 with his name now legally changed to Alice Cooper (to avoid issues over ownership of the band name), Welcome to My Nightmare was released as his first solo album. That same year, after a brief relationship with girlfriend Raquel Welch, Alice Cooper fell for Sheryl Goddard, a performer in his show. They married in 1976 and although Sheryl filed for divorce in 1983, they reconciled and are still together 39 years later. 

Recovered after being hospitalized in 1977 for treatment for alcoholism and again in 1983 for cocaine addiction, Alice Cooper continues to perform on tour, write and record music, and act today. His radio show Nights with Alice Cooper debuted in 2005 and is widely broadcast in North America and round the world. Now a "senior citizen", he is a talented golf nut and philanthropist, hosting The Alice Cooper Celebrity AM Golf Tournament (proceeds go to his charity, The Solid Rock Foundation) since 1997.

2005 Alice Cooper interview quote: 

"He's (Mick Jagger) six years older than me, so when he retires, I have six more years. I will not let him beat me when it comes to longevity."

Happy 67th birthday, Alice Cooper!

*Images are public domain or Creative Commons licensed & sourced via Wikimedia Commons or Flickr, unless otherwise noted*

Anita Hamilton

50+ World editor & baby boomer writer Anita Hamilton has always been interested in the "real people" stories behind the characters that create and inhabit the world of music, books, movies, television shows, current events, history, etc. A lifelong love of research (ok, nosiness) and writing, combined with a loving and supportive family complete with 3 mini-dachshund minions, keeps her busy.

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