The documentary, which captures the record-store reunion of the remaining four members of the Alice Cooper group, made its world premiere at the Phoenix Film Festival, winning the best documentary short in the process, three years.
The soundtrack to the documentary “Live from the Astroturf, Alice Cooper” is Friday, September. The CD and Blu-ray will be released on DVD along with Digipac and four variants of colored vinyl.
The concert was originally set up as a signing book for bassist Dennis Dunaway’s memoir, “Snakes! Guillotines! Electric Chairs! My Adventures in the Alice Cooper Group.”
But Dallas record store owner Chris Penn of Good Records, where Dunaway will be signed, opted for that date in October 2015 because he knew the singer was on vacation in Texas.
They were able to host a rare reunion concert by a group supporting the 1973 US tour chart topping chart “Billion Dollar Babies”.
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The making of ‘Live from the Astroturf’
Director Steven Gaddis set out to capture Cooper, Dunaway, guitarist Michael Bruce and drummer Neil Smith for “Live from the Astroturf, Alice Cooper”, which has won many awards at festivals around the world.
“I’m going to sign books and do my own questionnaire,” Dunaway told the Arizona Republic in 2019.
“And then we found out that Alice was in town and was going to have a day off, so Chris asked if Michael and Neal were interested in playing and we turned this into a massive event around the book signing.”
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Dunaway: ‘Not bad for any rehearsal’
It’s a stellar performance and the sound is amazing.
Or as Danway told The Arizona Republic, “It’s not bad for any rehearsal and hasn’t played those songs for a few years. The previous night, Neil, Michael and I made sure the amps were working … It sounded more like a soundcheck than a rehearsal but, you know, we played those songs first. Not that it wasn’t done. “
He had not been “elected” for some time. Ryan Roxy, who was filling the guitar for the late great Glenn Buxton, who died in 1997, spoke with him to do just that.
“But it turned out great,” Dunaway said. “As soon as you hear the original voice and all the parts are played the way they are written, it makes things fall into place naturally.”
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The Alice Cooper group reunites over the years
That show led to other opportunities for Cooper’s former bandmates, who met in their teens in Phoenix in the ’60s.
Each album that Cooper has released since then – 2017’s “Paranormal” and last year’s “Detroit Stores” – features two reunion tracks.
The former bandmates also made a UK tour and industry show in Nashville in 2017 (which caused them to be on stage to perform at the Cooper’s Nashville Concert Encore).
After “Muscle of Love” in 1974 the original members went their own way. Cooper went solo with “Welcome to My Nightmare” the following year.
The four remaining members reunited at the second Glenn Buxton Memorial weekend in Cooperstown, Phoenix, in 1999, and played Cooper’s Christmas Pudding with Steve Hunter on guitar at the Dodge Theater (now Arizona Federal Theater) in December 2010.
At the Christmas Pudding Concert, longtime producer Bob Ezrin announced that he was selected to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
They reunited at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction event the following March, and a month later played the Revolver Golden Gods Awards and recorded a live set for the Jagermeister Ice Cold 4D webcast.
He appeared in three songs on the album “Welcome 2 My Nightmare” in 2011.
The Dallas Record Store Concert was the first they played together in 2011 after those events.
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Phoenix Origins by Alice Cooper
Cooper, Dunaway and Buxton made their first appearance at the Cortez High School “cafetorium”, shaking the wigs they bought at Woolworth while betraying the Beatles as part of a talent show.
By the time he hit the Phoenix club scene as Spiders, he had hired Bruce, a North High footballer, to score a regional hit with the single “Don’t Blow Your Mind.”
After changing his name to Naz, he moved to Los Angeles in 1967, joining Glendale Community College with Dunaway, Cooper, and Buxton, who were Camelback High grads in the art classes.
This month marks the 50th anniversary of the album “Schools Out”, whose title track remains their highest-charting US
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