April 26, 1972: Alice Cooper declares “School’s Out”

No1_Single-08-12-1972School’s Out” is a song first recorded as the title track single of Alice Cooper‘s fifth album and written by the Alice Cooper band.

Cooper has said he was inspired to write the song when answering the question, “What’s the greatest three minutes of your life?”. Cooper said: “There’s two times during the year. One is Christmas morning, when you’re just getting ready to open the presents. The greed factor is right there. The next one is the last three minutes of the last day of school when you’re sitting there and it’s like a slow fuse burning. I said, ‘If we can catch that three minutes in a song, it’s going to be so big.'”

The lyrics of “School’s Out” indicate that not only is the school year ended for summer vacation, but ended forever, and that the school itself has been blown up. It incorporates the childhood rhyme, “No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks” into its lyrics. It also featured children contributing some of the vocals.

“School’s Out” became Alice Cooper’s first major hit single, reaching No1 on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in August 1972. It also marked the first time that Alice Cooper became regarded as more than just a theatrical novelty act.

The single version of the song is a slightly sped-up mono mix of the album version with one major difference — the “turn-off” effect used upon the school bell and sound effects at the end of the album version is not used on the single version, allowing the school bell and effects to simply fade out.

Some radio stations banned the song from their airwaves, stating that the song gave the students a negative impression of rebelliousness against childhood education. Teachers, parents, principals, counselors, and psychologists also shunned that song and demanded several radio stations to ban the song from ever being played on the air. [Wikipedia]

Watch Alice Cooper perform “School’s Out” on Top of the Pops in 1972 on the TOTPArchive YouTube Channel.

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