Legendary rocker Alice Cooper has completed work on his new album, "Detroit Stories". The LP, which was once again produced by Cooper's longtime collaborator Bob Ezrin, features contributions by such Michigan talent as the MC5's Wayne Kramer, GRAND FUNK RAILROAD's Mark Farner and Johnny "Bee" Badanjek of MITCH RYDER & THE DETROIT WHEELS. They also used the Detroit Horns and Detroit background singers.
"Every Detroit player, I don't care how hard rock they are, how punk they are, there's a little bit of R&B in it, because it's Detroit," Cooper, who was born in Detroit as Vincent Furnier and moved to Phoenix as a child, told the Arizona Republic. "It's in the DNA."
Cooper said that there's no release date yet for "Detroit Stories". "There's nobody saying, 'Oh, you have to have it done by blah blah blah,'" he said. "The whole world is on hold right now [due to the coronavirus pandemic]."
Earlier in the month, Alice released a new single, "Don't Give Up". Produced by Ezrin using remote technology, the song is a spontaneous reaction to the challenges facing us all right now.
A strictly limited "Don't Give Up" seven-inch vinyl picture disc will be released on August 14 on earMUSIC.
Speaking to SiriusXM's Ozzy's Boneyard, Alice stated about how "Don't Give Up" came together: "The funny thing was Bob Ezrin and I and Tommy Henriksen did an album called 'Detroit Stories', and it's all about Detroit, because that's [my former] hometown. And I decided all Detroit players — Wayne Kramer, Mark Farner; all these guys — will either write or be on the album or sing on the album, but all the songs are about Detroit also. And so the song was called 'Hanging By A Thread', and it was a bit of an anti-suicide song. We're all hanging by a thread, but just don't step off the ledge. Hang in there. And Bob called up and said: 'That song is done. You've already done 'Hey Stoopid', which is an anti-suicide song.' He says, 'Why don't we turn this into what's going on now?' And he says, 'Keep the B section of the chorus,' he says, 'but let's take the verse and you talk it and just write something poetic that's encouraging.
"The idea that I had on it was that we're a lot tougher than this disease," he continued. "We're the blood and guts of the human race. Does it scare us? Yeah. But are we gonna be [too] scared [to move forward]? Hell no. We're gonna live through this. And the whole idea was just don't step off the ledge. Some people are already suicidal, and then this comes along, and this is gonna push 'em off the edge. And I'm just saying don't step off the edge."
Last September, Cooper released a six-track EP called "Breadcrumbs", described as a tribute to the garage-rock heroes of his hometown of Detroit.