When Alice Cooper made his one-and-only appearance on The Midnight Special it was the summer of 1979, well past his first, early-to-mid-70s golden era. He was promoting From the Inside, an album made in the wake of a stay at Cornell Medical Center, a sanitarium located near the city of White Plains in Westchester County, New York.
"The characters on the album, they’re all real people,” Cooper told Classic Rock. “That guy in For Veronica’s Sake, all he ever talked about was his dog. ‘For Veronica’s sake, I gotta get outta here.’ The dog’s name wasn’t Veronica, but I thought that was a great name. The girl in I Wish I Were Born In Beverly Hills, she was the most spoiled human being on the planet. She had everything she wanted, but she still found a way to totally destroy her life at a very young age."
Cooper played four songs from the album: the title track, Serious, How You Gonna See Me Now and Inmates (We're All Crazy), but, given his history – and the fact that he was hosting the show – some of his greatest hits were also performed. And one of those songs, the classic Only Women Bleed, is the latest clip to be uploaded to The Midnight's Special's excellent and ever-growing archive on YouTube.
The Midnight Special version of Only Women Bleed is little more than two minutes long, a full minute-and-a-half shorter than the studio version, but there's a reason for that: it was part of a medley of songs that also included Cooper's other big hits, I'm Eighteen and Billion Dollar Babies.
Backing Cooper on the show were guitarist Davey Johnstone, plus three musicians who'd played on 1975's Welcome To My Nightmare album: bassist Prakash John, drummer Whitey Glan, and keyboardist Jozef Chirowski. And, watching closely, we imagine, were the show's other guests: The Cars, New Jersey disco outfit Instant Funk, plus singers Olivia Newton-John and Tanya Tucker.
Alice Cooper's new album Road is out now.