The man who invented shock rock tells the amazing and, yeah, shocking story of how he slayed his thirsty demons–with a golf club. It started one day when Cooper was watching a Star Trek rerun between concerts, bored and drunk on a quart-of-whiskey-a-day habit; a friend dragged the rocker out of his room and suggested a round of golf.Read more...
- Publisher: Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Gr
From the book
The Fabulous Furniers
I was born Vincent Damon Furnier, named after one of my uncles and Damon Runyon. From the age of ten, I grew up in a religious home; my grandfather was an evangelist and my parents joined his church too. Before then, though, we lived in East Detroit and worshiped baseball. I was the happiest kid in the world.
The Furniers were Huguenots, part French-Canadian people who came over to the New World with the French Protestants in the seventeenth century. They eventually married into some Sioux Indians and a lot of Irish. As a result, two out of three parts of my ethnic background are very alcohol prone. My seventh cousin was the Marquis de Lafayette, the same Lafayette who secured the support of the French during the American Revolution and fought alongside George Washington at Valley Forge. Look at a portrait of Lafayette and you'll notice the same high cheekbones and long black hair as me. Some say I look just like him, especially when I'm on stage with my sword. I can feel my bloodlines, since swashbuckling comes naturally to me--that's the French part of me, I guess.
My grandfather, Thurman Sylvester Furnier, was the president of what was called the Church of Jesus Christ. It wasn't the Church of Latter- day Saints--it wasn't a Mormon church. In fact, their biggest religious rivals were the Mormons. If you called one of his church members a Mormon, that was like stabbing them in the heart.
My mother was born Ella McCartt in Glenmary, Tennessee. You can't find Glenmary on a map. It was a whistle-stop. Her mother died when she was very young. She has childhood memories of putting clear liquid into Ball jars for her dad, who was a moonshiner in Glenmary. She had six brothers and sisters, and all of them helped out with the "family business"--and meanwhile the old man kept about forty or fifty thousand dollars in cash buried in the yard. This was in 1946, and at that time, fifty grand was equivalent to about half a million dollars. My grandfather didn't trust banks.
At age sixteen, around the end of World War II, my mother ran away from home and found her way up to Detroit to work in the factories. That's where she met my dad, whom people called Mick, though his real name was Ether Maroni Furnier (another Mormon-sounding name). He had just been discharged from the Navy. They were soon married.
I was born in Detroit on February 4, 1948. My first memory of growing up in working-class East Detroit is sitting in a smoke-filled living room with my dad and his brothers, watching Friday-night boxing. There was lots of Carling's Black Label beer and Lucky Strike cigarettes; I would drink Vernor's ginger ale. There was always so much smoke in the room, I'm surprised I didn't contract lung cancer. All the girls stayed in the other room while I sat with the men, my uncles and their buddies, watching the fights on a tiny black-and- white TV set.
Growing up in Detroit was great. I loved my life because my dad and my uncles were so cool. I was the only boy in our family. There was me (Vince) and my sister Nickie, then thirteen cousins, mostly girls. I was the only male left to carry on the Furnier name. So, of course, I ended up legally changing my name to Alice Cooper.
My uncles were Damon Runyon--type characters--tough guys with colorful speech and fascinating stories. Uncle Jocko ran a crooked pool hall in East Detroit. He was my dad's oldest brother, a spry lightweight prizefighter with a broken nose and not an ounce of fat on him. We all called him Jocko, but his real name was Vincent Collier Furnier. I was named after him. If you wanted to buy anything hot, you went to Jocko's pool hall. Or...
"What a blast from the past, and such insight to the future! Alice Cooper, Golf Monster shares Alice's personal life mission, interwoven with great stories and characters from the 60's through the present in Rock and Roll. Not to mention some wonderful golf tips and experiences, humorously presented. Thank you Alice, for a nice ride!"
--Michael Douglas, actor and creator of the Michael Douglas & Friends Charity Golf Tournament
"Few things are more surreal than playing golf with a guy named Alice. But by the time you reach the second tee, you realize that No More Mr. Nice Guy is one of the wittiest and engaging playing partners you've ever had. Plus, the guy can play! For those who aren't likely to experience the pleasure of a quiet, leisurely round with the man who spends his nights singing "School's been blown to pieces," this book provides the next best thing." - Steve Eubanks, author of Golf Freek
"Debauchery, demons and divots! This is the only book I've ever read that should come in 3-D; the crazy stories come right at you from Sinatra to KISS to the Moscow Golf Club." - Gary McCord, author of Golf for Dummies