Consider the man, the band. Taking part in a culture that was slowly and deliciously sliding into excess. Consider the country at the time: a criminal (not conceptual, actual) President in office, a world deluged in wars we did not understand. Meanwhile 60’s Free Love started to make some cash and between the beauty, freedom and ghetto’s, we started to re arrange our priorities. We expected more. Believed we deserved more. And we still do.
Meanwhile Sex And Drugs And Rock And Roll started to seep into the water supply and created a great Summer Cocktail to kick The 70’s into Space and eventually, absolute nothingness. It was a luge ride toward….well, right now. Personal freedoms were gained, only to be re lost in 4 year increments. We obsessed on sex and starlight and sparkles (before the Internet obsessed us).
‘Hello. Hooray. Let the show begin. I have been ready.’
And artists challenged us, used their own skin as canvas, used their own hometown as the content. The conceptual painters, the aural electronic pioneers, the re invention of invention. Some took us by the hand and showed us what was possible.
Some smeared on lipstick and mascara and made love to post mortem dolls on stage.
However you find your enlightenment is by definition ‘cool’.
Was Alice Cooper considered a serious social commentator? Of course not. He was a goon, a goof. A showman in a world of deep thinkers.
Did Alice Cooper prepare us for these current 2016 days of confusion? Damn Right He Did (spoke in my best Robert Evans).
‘Hello. Hooray. Let the lights grow dim. I have been ready’.
And he (and Dennis and Neal and Michael and Glen) did so by creating a love letter to a failing democracy called ‘Billion Dollar Babies’. And as we know of history, it tends to r-r-r-epeat.
I start with two songs: ‘No More Mister Nice Guy’ and ‘Elected’. I think it is safe to say that these two songs have predicted Trumpism and the social unrest used as fashion and the ears of anyone in power listening a great distance away. ‘No More Mister Nice Guy’ is a cartoon. I always imagined it akin to the ‘Beep Beep My Ass’ t-shirts showing a pretty beaten bird and Wile E.
It is a satire that circles around the idea that ‘everyone hates me so I’m gonna hate’em right back’. Which seemed funny. Till now.
‘Elected’ opens the door for deeper shades of Furnier Nostrodam’ning. Cause it’s silly. A rock star running for President. An UNREPENTANT Rock Star births a movement that is evidenced through a recording studio chock full of imponderable improbable deplorables with guitars and fur collars. Silly. A goof.
Now….I hear this song and compare it to the election season we just barely got through. And due to the damage (self inflicted) on my brain pan, this sounds like a legitimate campaign ad.
But the REAL Social satire…and by real I mean ‘actual, in this time present’ is ‘Generation Landslide’. Because I thought it was a cool song. Its actually a call to arms.
‘Generation Landslide’: discusses the real issue about what divides this country. And it is not race, or what color state you live in. It’s not age.
It is Money. And it always has been.
Consider the ‘Billion Dollar Babies’ that have spun us around this year.
The Politicians, and the cost of their suits, the price of their ads.
The cable news networks that took us into their confidence (like any decent grifter) though they never had any deeper information than we had.
Consider the costs of Government (foreign and domestic) that unsubtly changed the landscape, even while the mower was working it.
And he laughs…to himself. He knew it. Saw it coming.
We have made a bad habit of overlooking the goofs, the goons. It has held us hostage at the highest courts in the land. We have a lot of bad habits. They may kill us.
Vote Alice 2020