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Cooper: Booze held me back for years

Addiction stalled creative output

Alice Cooper says he would have made many more hit albums if he had stayed sober.

The shock rocker says he made four unsuccessful albums when he was in the grip of alcohol addiction and only made another hit record – 1989's Trash – when he quit drinking.

Cooper is the subject of current documentary Super Duper Alice Cooper which charts his career up until the 1980s.

He tells Guitar International: “I got to a point where we made three or four albums in a row that didn’t do anything. My real fans loved those albums, but they were so experimental and different from Billion Dollar Babies and School’s Out which were both number one and Welcome to My Nightmare which was in the top five. Those were the albums that were huge. Then I had four albums and they were cool but non-existent.

“I think in that period of time from a career point of view, I said I’m never going to make another hit album again. Trash came after that and it sold five million copies. As soon as I got sober all of a sudden things got okay again. It took me going into a hospital and getting sober before I made another hit album.”

Cooper famously replaced boozing with an addiction for golf, becoming a highly accomplished player and friends with stars such as John Daly. He recalls a discussion he had with Daly, who battles with his own addiction problems.

He adds: “John told me he’s not going to drink again and probably not going to win again, because when he won two majors he was drinking.

“I told him when I made my two number one albums and all these platinum albums I was drinking. I would have made more platinum albums if I hadn’t been drinking. Don’t give alcohol the credit, you won two majors when you were stoned out of your mind, you probably would have won five. I got to the point that the alcohol was only holding me back. I would have done a lot better without it.”

Feature: The story behind Welcome To My Nightmare

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