Archive for Alice Cooper

Son of Son of Son of Son of Halloween

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 21, 2012 by 30daysout

Repost: I tell you one thing: as a kid, if I’d gone up to trick or treat at a house and Elvira answered the door … I would have been pretty, ah, scared.  Looking at the photo, I’m pretty sure I would have the same reaction today.

MP3:  “Elvira’s Intro” by Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark

MP3:  “Attack Of The 50-Foot Woman” by the Tubes

MP3:  “Little Demon” by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins

MP3:  “The Trembler” by Duane Eddy

MP3:  “Count Macabre” by The Connoisseurs

MP3: “Trick Or Treat” by Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark (Introduction by Dr. Demento)

MP3: “Ghost of Frankenstein” by the Misfits

MP3:  “Monster Mash” by Vincent Price

MP3:  “The Vampire Sleeps” by Boris Karloff

MP3: “Moonlight (A Vampire’s Dream)” by Stevie Nicks

MP3:  “Children Of The Grave” by Black Sabbath

MP3:  “Pet Sematary” by the Ramones

MP3:  “Full Moon” by Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark

MP3:  “Welcome To My Nightmare” by Alice Cooper

MP3:  “Spooktacular Finale” by Spike Jones

YouTube: “Monster Mash” at a Brian Wilson soundcheck

YouTube: Elvira introduction to the movie “Eegah”

Hey, It’s Halloween (Almost)!

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 20, 2012 by 30daysout

Sorry, we’ve been a little into our day jobs lately – that, and listening endlessly to Neil Young. So we just noticed Halloween’s a few weeks away, and that is always a great opportunity for some cool rock tunes.

So here you go – don’t be scared!

MP3: “Astro Zombies” by the Misfits

MP3: “Dance of Doom” by Frankie Stein & His Ghouls

MP3: “Red Temple Prayer (Two Headed Dog)” by Roky Erickson & the Aliens

MP3: “Werewolf, Baby!” by Rob Zombie

MP3: “Keepin’ Halloween Alive” by Alice Cooper

MP3: “It’s Monster Surfing Time” by the Deadly Ones

MP3: “Surfin’ Dead” by the Cramps

MP3: “Monster Mash” by the Misfits

MP3: “Monster’s Mash Party” by Bobby “Boris” Pickett

MP3: “Fear” by the Ventures

MP3: “Twilight Zone” opening by Rod Serling

MP3: Velvet Vampire radio plug/”Dinner With Drac” by John Zacherle

MP3: “A Night With the Jersey Devil” by Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band

MP3: “Forever Autumn” by Jeff Wayne w/Justin Hayward and narration by Richard Burton

More Rockin’ Christmas!

Posted in Christmas with tags , , , , , , , on December 8, 2011 by 30daysout

Yeah, that's Nancy Reagan. No, this is not Photoshopped.

Editor’s Note: More recycling of past blog posts, gotta conserve this Christmas!

How many shopping days left until Christmas?  Not enough, that’s for sure.  The holiday season isn’t about shopping anyway, it’s about hanging around with people you like and, in the case of most of our families, a few people you don’t like.  It’s about giving but it isn’t about begging.  And it’s not about the TV commentators who are so afraid white Jesus isn’t represented enough in Christmas celebrations.

Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa – they’re what you want to make it.  Celebrate ’em like you want, be nice and leave everyone else alone.  Enough speeches, now let’s rock.

MP3: “Soulful Christmas” by James Brown

MP3: “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” by R.E.M.

MP3: “Teenage Christmas” by Eux Autres

MP3: “Toy Jackpot” by Blackalicious

MP3: “Ain’t No Chimneys In The Projects” by Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings

MP3: “Seasons Greetings Message” by Alice Cooper

MP3: “Jingle Bell Rock” by Neil Diamond

MP3: “Run Rudolph Run” by Creedence Clearwater Revisited

MP3: “Deck The Halls” by Canned Heat

MP3: “Winter Wonderland” by Liz Phair

MP3: “Christmas Lullaby” by Shane MacGowan & the Popes

MP3: “Christmas Island” by the Vatican Cellars

MP3: “Santa Claus Files Unusual Flight Plan” by the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD)

MP3: “Messed Up Xmas” by the Dollyrots

MP3: “Father Christmas” by the Kinks

This is just wrong. Happy Holidays!

It Came From Halloween – Scary Rock and Roll!

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 20, 2011 by 30daysout

Alice Cooper and friend

Face it – rock and roll isn’t that scary.  Unless you’re an uptight parent, or some kind of preacher.  Rock music about Halloween, and the stuff that comes with Halloween, is goofy and funny, but it isn’t frightening.  Although I must admit, I got a bit of a fright the first time I saw Adam Lambert perform … but thankfully that’s not rock and roll.  Or is it?  Bwahahahaha!

Back in the day, there was Alice Cooper.  He had an act that involved boa constrictors, decapitating baby dolls with a guillotine (or something) and an electric chair.  Alice also had Top 40 hits – “I’m Eighteen,” “School’s Out” and “No More Mr. Nice Guy” among them.  Successful, certainly; entertaining, probably.  But scary?  No.

Before Alice, back in the 1950s, there was Screamin’ Jay Hawkins.  He jumped in and out of a coffin during his stage act, performed fake voodoo rituals and had some pretty crazy music.  But his snake wasn’t even real.  After Alice, you can take your pick among the punk rockers of the late 1970s: they were kind of disturbing, but honestly not scary.  And from the 1990s, you had Marilyn Manson – the less said about him the better.

So by default, I guess Alice Cooper is the scariest guy in rock and roll.  Unless you count Adam Lambert …

MP3: “Black Juju” by Alice Cooper

MP3: “Feast of the Mau Mau” by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins

MP3: “Excitable Boy” (live) by Warren Zevon

MP3: “Frankenstein” (live) by Edgar Winter

MP3: “Don’t Fear The Reaper” by Blue Öyster Cult

MP3: “Skeletons In The Closet” by Alice Cooper

MP3: “Skull Ring” by Iggy Pop w/the Stooges

MP3: “Screamin’ Ball (At Dracula Hall)” by the Duponts

MP3: “Haunted House” by Jumpin’ Gene Simmons

MP3: “The Blob” by the Five Blobs

MP3: “This Is Halloween” by Danny Elfman

MP3: “Bo Meets The Monster” by Bo Diddley

MP3: “Witch Queen of New Orleans” by Redbone

MP3: “Hallowed Be My Name” by Alice Cooper

MP3: “Iron Man” by Black Sabbath

MP3: “Monster Motion” by Bobby “Boris” Pickett

MP3: “Out Of Limits” by the Challengers

MP3: “Purple People Eater” by Sheb Wooley

MP3: “Here Comes The Bride (The Bride of Frankenstein)” by Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark

MP3: “Ghostbusters” by Ray Parker Jr.

Son of Halloween

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , , on October 10, 2011 by 30daysout

Nothing much to say, except that here’s some more music appropriate for the Halloween season.

MP3: “Keepin’ Halloween Alive” by Alice Cooper

MP3: “It’s Monster Surfing Time” by the Deadly Ones

MP3: “Surfin’ Dead” by the Cramps

MP3: “Monster Mash” by the Misfits

MP3:  “Monster’s Mash Party” by Bobby “Boris” Pickett

MP3: “Fear” by the Ventures

MP3: “Twilight Zone” opening by Rod Serling

MP3: Velvet Vampire radio plug/”Dinner With Drac” by John Zacherle

MP3: “A Night With the Jersey Devil” by Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band

MP3: “Forever Autumn” by Jeff Wayne w/Justin Hayward and narration by Richard Burton

Halloween Rock

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , on October 8, 2011 by 30daysout

After Christmas, the most sung-about observance has to be Halloween. Of course, Halloween isn’t as popular among kids today as it was when we were younger. You can thank uptight elementary school principals and square-nuts church preachers for that.

Even the art of the Halloween rock and roll song seems to have faded into the mists of oblivion. Except … we now have this wonderful internet which lets us find these obscurities and share them in all their rockin’ glory. Here we go, Halloween’s not for a couple of weeks now so expect a few more posts like this.

MP3: “Halloween” by Helloween

MP3: “Astro Zombies” by the Misfits

MP3: “Transylvania Twist” by Baron Daemon & The Vampires

MP3: “Ghouls Gone Wild” by Alice Cooper

MP3: “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” by the Who

MP3: “Phantom of the Opera” by Iron Maiden

MP3: “Mummified in Bongwater” by Cannabis Corpse

MP3: “Dance of Doom” by Frankie Stein & His Ghouls

MP3: “Red Temple Prayer (Two Headed Dog)” by Roky Erickson & the Aliens

MP3: “There’s A Creature in Surfer’s Lagoon”  by the Deadly Ones

MP3: “Graveyard” by the Blenders

MP3: “Werewolf, Baby!” by Rob Zombie

Your Sister’s (Record) Rack: Flo & Eddie

Posted in Rock Classics! with tags , , , , , on October 3, 2010 by 30daysout

It’s been a rough work week, so I sneaked into my sister’s bedroom and dug deep in her record collection … and came up with Flo & Eddie, the 1974 album from, uh, Flo and Eddie.

Flo and Eddie were the Phlorescent Leech and Eddie, who were really Mark Volman (Flo) and Howard Kaylan (Eddie), both founding members of the 1960’s group the Turtles.  The duo were pretty much the leaders of the group, doing all of the vocals and writing most of the band’s hits (except for the Turtles’ biggest hit, “Happy Together”).  Even though the Turtles broke up in 1970, they were still contractually obliged to their old record label so they couldn’t use the Turtles name, or even their own names, in performing music.  So Volman, Kaylan and Turtles bassist Jim Pons joined Frank Zappa’s Mothers of Invention as the Phlorescent Leech & Eddie.  They recorded a few albums with Zappa and appeared his film 200 Motels.

When Zappa was injured in a 1971 stage accident (he was actually attacked by the angry boyfriend of a female fan), the Mothers went on hiatus so Volman/Kaylan and the rest of the band cut The Phlorescent Leech & Eddie (1972) and then, two years later,  Flo & Eddie.  By this time Flo & Eddie had gained a little credibility on their own, and they were opening for Alice Cooper on his “Billion Dollar Babies” tour.  The duo cut this album to help promote that (or the other way around), and it was produced by Bob Ezrin, who was also Alice Cooper’s producer.

The album consisted mainly of Kaylan/Volman originals, including the Turtle-esque “If We Only Had The Time” and some choice covers, including Ray Davies’ “Days” and the Phil Spector/Ronettes classic “The Best Part Of Breaking Up.”  Some of the trademark Zappa/Mothers weirdness surfaces in “The Sanzini Brothers,” a circus-themed goof with more funny voices and sound effects than music  – in fact the song itself doesn’t kick in until about halfway through the three-minute selection.

“Another Pop Star’s Life” is a slice of rock and roll torn from Alice Cooper’s playbook – it’s a wonder they didn’t give it to Alice to record.  The acoustic strum of “Just Another Town” recalls one of Stephen Stills’ more earnest efforts but it’s really a lament about being a rock performer “on the road.”   The seven-minute-long “Marmendy Hill,” which closes the album, is apparently a leftover from the Turtles days but it gets an epic treatment here.  After a ponderous opening, the song settles into a nice pop groove for a minute or two then the strings and high concept all swirl into an overreaching mess.  This would’a been a nice tune, cut down to about three minutes or so.   In some way this song presages the sort of thing that would make Meat Loaf famous a few years later.

Flo & Eddie would continue to cut albums through the 1970s and the duo also made a number of backing-vocal appearances on other artist’s records, like T. Rex (“Bang A Gong”), Keith Moon, Steely Dan, Bruce Springsteen (“Hungry Heart”), The Ramones, John Lennon and many more.  In the 1980s, they recorded music for children’s shows like the Care Bears and Strawberry Shortcake, and began hosting their own radio show on KROQ in L.A. and WXRK in New York.   In 1984, Kaylan and Volman legally regained the use of the Turtles name, and began touring as The Turtles Featuring Flo & Eddie.  And that Turtles music has been featured on just about every commercial imaginable.

MP3: “If We Only Had The Time”

MP3: “Best Part of Breaking Up”

MP3: “The Sanzini Brothers”

MP3: “Marmendy Hill”

The Turtles Featuring Flo & Eddie official website

Sampler Daze: WB/Reprise Loss Leaders, Part 4

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on September 6, 2009 by 30daysout

wholeburbankcatalogue middleroad

By 1972, the world was still rockin’ in a sort of Sixties-era hangover: newly freaky 18-year-olds had been given the right to vote for the first time (only fair, since they were long qualified to be drafted into the military), and men were still walking on the moon way up there.  Warner/Reprise issued a whopping four – count ’em – 2-disc sets in 1972, so for brevity’s sake we’ll break ’em up here.

The Whole Burbank Catalog showcased the variety of the label’s stable: rockers like Jethro Tull and Alice Cooper were mixed in with Jerry Garcia, Jackie Lomax and Bonnie Raitt.  T. Rex and Faces would spotlight their best albums with “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” and “Memphis,” respectively.  Cuts from old radio shows were interspersed with the music, to really make it sound like a free-form FM radio show – that technique is still in use today.   A new group making their first appearance in the Loss Leaders series was the trio America, represented by “Sandman,” a deep cut from their first LP.  That album would of course yield the big hits “Horse With No Name” and “I Need You,” and was the springboard for a long career.  It would take another album for the Texas-born duo of Seals & Crofts to hit it big – here they offer “Sudan Village,” a cut from their first album.  They’d cash in later in the year with the title song from their next album: Summer Breeze.

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Sampler Daze: The WB/Reprise Loss Leaders All-Star Team

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 5, 2009 by 30daysout

Arlo Guthrie

We take a short break from our exhaustive, year-by-year look at the Warner/Reprise Loss Leaders to cite a few of the artists who appeared throughout this series with great music.  We could call it our Loss Leaders All-Star Team.  Between 1969 and 1980, the label issued 35 samplers that were available to the public, and these artists were perennials.

Arlo Guthrie – Woody’s son made 13 appearances in the Loss Leaders series, appearing on the very first sampler in 1969 with “The Pause Of Mr. Claus,” a performance that features one of his trademark comedic rap/song combinations.  The best known of these is of course “Alice’s Restaurant Massacree,” the nearly-19-minute-long song that made Guthrie famous in 1967 and is played on hip radio stations every Thanksgiving.  Arlo hit the top 40 in 1972 with his version of Steve Goodman’s “City of New Orleans,” and he cut 14 albums for Warner Bros. before the label dropped him in 1983.

Randy Newman

Randy Newman

Randy Newman – Like Guthrie, Newman was one of those hard-to-market artists but he nevertheless earned a critical following when he first appeared in 1968.  Known for writing satiric songs (often from the point of view of a reprehensible character) with beautiful melodies, Newman actually penned hit songs for other artists (“Mama Told Me Not To Come” was a hit for Three Dog Night) and had a few hits of his own, including “Short People” (1977) and “I Love L.A.” (1983).  Newman is a runner-up to Arlo, with 12 appearances in the Loss Leaders series.

Frank Zappa/The Mothers of Invention – Zappa and/or his band made 11 total appearances in the Loss Leaders, they even gave him his own one-disc sampler in 1970 (Zapped) to showcase all the artists on his Bizarre/Straight labels.

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Rock Moment: Posters (and more) with your LPs!

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , on June 29, 2009 by 30daysout

Poster that came with Kiss' "Unmasked" (1980)

I remember running home with a copy of All Things Must Pass tucked under my arm – the Barker’s department store was about three blocks away from my house, and this purchase represented nearly a month’s worth of wages delivering newspapers.  After all, this was worth 14 bucks: George Harrison’s first solo album with not one, not two but three records!  When I unwrapped the elegant box and gently lifted the cover, folded paper fluttered out of the boxtop.  It was a HUGE poster of George!

Yep, back in the days of vinyl LPs you often got yer money’s worth – and more.  Some of the cooler (or not) artists of the day occasionally tucked some surprises inside the album sleeve, more often than not it was a poster.  You’d slip that baby out and unfold it like a gas station map, and your heart would leap as the last flip revealed a gloriously giant artwork ready for your bedroom wall.

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