By Jesse Bertel

“Living and Touring with Alice Cooper and Other Stories” is a new book about the early stages of the iconic band, Alice Cooper, from their high school days through their rise to fame in the early ’70s. Through his five-year journey as a roadie for the band, author Michael Allen reveals stories about the group that have never been told.

Allen spoke with Across the Street about the book and his close connection to the band. The following interview was edited for length and clarity.

What was your goal in writing this book?

It was basically just to test myself, and people told me to do it. Dennis Dunaway, who was the bass player for Alice Cooper and The Nazz and The Spiders and all the way back to The Earwigs, one of the founding members, wrote a book called “Snakes Guillotines and Electric Chairs,” and he would email me time to time and say, “Do you remember these stories?”

So, the book came out and I started reading it and going, “Wow, this is bringing back a lot of memories.” It was great thinking about this stuff again because when I left, I completely put it out of my mind. He invited me, I think it was 2019, to a movie that they made that was called “Live from the AstroTurf.” So, I went to the premiere. The guys really seemed like they enjoyed playing with one another again and he introduced me to a bunch of friends, one of them was named Paul Brennan. He was sort of the keeper of the knowledge of Alice Cooper and he and his wife, we talked for maybe an hour and he said, “Tell me some stories.”

So I told him some stories and he goes, “I never knew that. I mean, this is all new to me. You need to write this down.”

How did you become a roadie for the band?

When they became the Spiders — and that was shortly after, maybe six months after them becoming The Earwigs and graduating from high school — I was friends with Glen Buxton, I met him in college. He was the lead guitar player. He was the only one who knew how to play a guitar. And we became friends.

He asked me one day, “What kind of car do you drive?” And he goes, “How would you like to work for us?” I’m going, “Well, in what capacities?” He said, “We’re starting to get a little famous, known in Tucson. We’re going to start going to Tucson and other places and we need somebody to drive us down there with our equipment, set up our equipment, taking it down and taking them home again.” I go, “That’s it?” And he goes, “Yeah, and we’ll pay you.” And I go, “Well, okay, I’m in.”

For more information, join Living and Touring with Alice Cooper on Facebook groups, at www.facebook.com/groups/2413217258838673.

Jesse Bertel is a reporter/videographer for the Prescott News Network. Follow him on Twitter @ JesseBertel, email him at jbertel@prescottaz.com, or call 928-445-3333, ext. 2043.

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