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Nita Strauss: "My Favorite Alice Cooper Song to Perform Is a Tribute to Steve Vai"

(Image credit: Neil Lupin/Getty Images)

When it comes to picking a favorite Alice Cooper song, fans might point to his hits like “I’m Eighteen,” “School’s Out” or “Poison.”

For Cooper guitarist Nita Strauss, her favorite track to perform is “Feed My Frankenstein,” a cut from Cooper’s 1991 album, Hey Stoopid, that features guitar work from Steve Vai and Joe Satriani, as well as bass from Mötley Crüe’s Nikki Sixx.

Strauss, who has been performing with Alice Cooper since 2014, tells K9 Magazine the song is special to her because of Vai’s performance on it.

“Every time we play that song onstage I get to play Steve Vai’s solo and it’s a little bit of a moment for me to pay tribute to my hero.

“I learned the solo note for note how he recorded it, and so each time I play it I get to think about how he inspired me so much while playing his notes.”

Strauss also discusses her appreciation of Jason Becker, who influenced her greatly as she was starting out on guitar.

“You know, it’s interesting that as you learn guitar you start to think that all of these things that seemed insurmountable as a young guitar player, but with practice, you realize how they’re done and you have a whole new appreciation for that person who inspired you in the first place.

“As a young guitar player, I would listen to Jason Becker and go ‘how’s he doing that?’ because what he was playing sounded amazing. Now I can actually play one of Jason’s pieces but have a whole new appreciation for how technical and difficult it is.

“Jason [who has ALS] has overcome such amazing adversity in his life. He retains such an incredible passion for music, I think that’s what most inspires me now about someone like him is that he has such commitment to what he does and to music.”

You can check out Cooper’s original recording of “Feed My Frankenstein” below along with a 2016 live performance of the song featuring Strauss.

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Christopher Scapelliti is editor-in-chief of Guitar Player (opens in new tab) magazine, the world’s longest-running guitar magazine, founded in 1967. In his extensive career, he has authored in-depth interviews with such guitarists as Pete Townshend, Slash, Billy Corgan, Jack White, Elvis Costello and Todd Rundgren, and audio professionals including Beatles engineers Geoff Emerick and Ken Scott. He is the co-author of Guitar Aficionado: The Collections: The Most Famous, Rare, and Valuable Guitars in the World (opens in new tab), a founding editor of Guitar Aficionado magazine, and a former editor with Guitar WorldGuitar for the Practicing Musician and Maximum Guitar. Apart from guitars, he maintains a collection of more than 30 vintage analog synthesizers.