& Fortune: Alice CooperOutlandish on stage, humdrum on money
quiz: Which of the following correctly describes Alice Cooper?
Painted-face shock rocker
Long-time real-estate investor
Faithful husband of 25 years and father of three
President of a Christian nonprofit charity for inner-city
The correct answer is, "All
of the above."
While Alice Cooper may seem a mass of contradictions,
he wasn't always that way. Early in his career, while he was scoring
hits with songs such as "School's Out," and "Billion
Dollar Babies," Cooper was as menacing as his persona. At the
time, he was drinking a bottle of whiskey a day and living a life
every bit as scary as the horror scenarios he depicted on stage.
But the late '70s saw him bottom out, and Cooper was
institutionalized (his drying-out time is depicted in his From
The Inside album). Since then, Cooper has been a new man, much
like his father before him, a minister who also changed his life
after conquering alcohol addiction.
While Cooper himself changed, his music and show have
stayed the same -- at least on the surface. Cooper still offers
fans the same type of wild horror antics he has for the past 30
years, although he has no misconceptions about how scary they really
are. Cooper sees himself as a modern-day Vincent Price -- horror
fun, but not real fear, and certainly tame by today's standards.
One change that has taken place, however, is the intent
with which he writes his lyrics. Mere horror plays now have become
morality plays in Cooper's eyes, although on the surface the difference
is hard to discern. His last two CDs, Brutal
Planet and Dragontown,
are Cooper's version of Dante's Inferno, and Cooper hopes people
will look at the horrific situations that befall his characters
and ask if they want to risk their souls to that type of damnation
for their acts here on earth.
But if you don't find yourself racking your brain
over such things -- well, it's still fun.
Bankrate spoke to Cooper about much more earthly concerns
-- his finances, and his deceptively casual relationship to them.
Bankrate: Let's talk investments. What
has your traditional investment strategy been?
Alice Cooper: I have no idea. I don't do any
business. I have been with the same manager for 33 years, and the
deal is, "I make the money, you manage it. Don't tell me where
it is, just tell me at the end of the month how much is there."
We've been together 33 years, and we have no contract with each
other. It's the best relationship in rock 'n' roll -- it's legendary.
We still have money from the '70s. He's brilliant. He doesn't get
into high risk things. I put myself on an allowance, and I'm probably
one of the only guys from the seventies that still has cash.