Note: This page is for the band Alice Cooper. Post-1974 solo releases and writing credits by the individual artist Alice Cooper should be entered under 'Alice Cooper (2)', as should all pre-1974 individual credits for Alice Cooper on the band's releases. - – — — – - Founded as "The Earwigs" in the spring of 1964, the group featured Vincent Furnier [later known as Alice Cooper (2)] on vocals, Dennis Dunaway on bass, and Glen Buxton on guitar. They were shortly after joined by John Tatum on rhythm guitar and John Speer on drums and became Spiders in the fall of 1965. Michael Bruce replaced Tatum on guitar in 1966. The band relocated to Los Angeles in March 1967, changed their name to The Nazz in April. Fellow Phoenix musician and friend Neal Smith moved in with the band in September 1967 and replaced Speer as drummer later that fall. By March of 1968 the band changed their name again, becoming Alice Cooper to prevent confusion with Todd Rundgren's group Nazz.
Lead singer Furnier took on the identity of Alice Cooper onstage and the band went on to become one of the most popular rock bands of the early seventies. Their overblown stage presence basically created shock rock and was hugely influential on the rock scene that followed.
The band split in 1974, initially taking a hiatus with several members working on solo projects. Furnier legally changed his name to Alice Cooper in 1975, and launched a successful solo career. Bruce, Dunaway and Smith went on to form Billion Dollar Babies, named after the most popular Alice Cooper album.
Alice Cooper (born Vincent Damon Furnier; February 4, 1948) is an American rock singer whose career spans over five decades. With a raspy voice and a stage show that features numerous props and stage illusions, including pyrotechnics, guillotines, electric chairs, fake blood, reptiles, baby dolls, and dueling swords, Cooper is considered by many music journalists and peers to be "The Godfather of Shock Rock". He has drawn equally from horror films, vaudeville, and garage rock to pioneer a macabre and theatrical brand of rock designed to shock audiences.Originating in Phoenix, Arizona, in 1964, "Alice Cooper" was originally a band with roots extending back to a band called the Earwigs, consisting of Furnier on lead vocals and harmonica, Glen Buxton on lead guitar, and Dennis Dunaway on bass guitar and backing vocals. By 1966, Michael Bruce on rhythm guitar joined the three and Neal Smith was added on drums in 1967. The five named the band "Alice Cooper", and Furnier eventually adopted it as his stage pseudonym. They released their 1969 debut studio album with limited chart success. Breaking out with the 1970 single "I'm Eighteen" and the third studio album Love It to Death, the band reached their commercial peak in 1973 with their sixth studio album, Billion Dollar Babies. After the band broke up, Furnier legally changed his name to Alice Cooper and began a solo career in 1975 with the concept album Welcome to My Nightmare. Over his career, Cooper has sold well over 50 million records.Cooper has experimented with a number of musical styles, mainly hard rock, glam rock, heavy metal, and glam metal, but also new wave (1980–1983), art rock on DaDa (1983), and industrial rock on Brutal Planet (2000) and Dragontown (2001). He helped to shape the sound and look of heavy metal, and has been described as the artist who "first introduced horror imagery to rock'n'roll, and whose stagecraft and showmanship have permanently transformed the genre". He is also known for his wit offstage, with The Rolling Stone Album Guide calling him the world's most "beloved heavy metal entertainer". Away from music, Cooper is a film actor, a golfing celebrity, a restaurateur, and, since 2004, a radio disc jockey (DJ) with his classic rock show Nights with Alice Cooper.