“Go to Hell” – Alice Cooper

If anyone wants to know what song corrupted me forever and led me down a dire musical path that has included KISS, the Sex Pistols, the Mentors, the Angry Samoans, and G.G. Allin, it was hearing (and owning!) this song at the age of 6.

Let’s take the wayback machine to Christmas 1976. I saw a K-Tel album advertised on TV that had a lot of hits of the day on it. Since some of the music sounded cool to me, I asked my parents to buy the album for me for Christmas. I didn’t get the album, but what I got was way cooler. In addition to receiving a portable record player, I got forty or so 45 RPM records. The songs were things my Mom thought was good back then, mostly MOR adult contemporary stuff (Barry Manilow, Neil Diamond). The MOR stuff also included an Alice Cooper’s ballad called “I Never Cry.” My mom thoughtfully put a check mark on the A side of each single to indicate the song to listen to … Except … She made a huge mistake on the Alice Cooper record. She accidentally checked the B side of the single instead of the A side. The B side of “I Never Cry” was “Go to Hell,” which is about “being a living obscenity” and roasting in hell forever. Not only did the song have the “7734 upside down” word in the title, but it described all kinds of things that scared (and admittedly, thrilled) me at such a young age. This record was a secret I shared with my friends at the time and we all marveled at getting away with something so dark and forbidden. Ah, those were much more innocent times. Anyway, thank you Mom for inadvertently leading me down the path of dark pop culture. I mean that with all sincerity, trust me.

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