Alice Cooper responds to Gene Simmons' comments on the death of rock music: “There's kids out there with guitars and they're playing hard rock”

[L-R] Alice Cooper and Gene Simmons
(Image credit: Lorne Thomson/Neil Lupin/Getty Images)

Alice Cooper has offered a retort to Gene Simmons' recent comments on the death of rock music.

In a new interview with NME, the School's Out rocker says “Gene Simmons – I would like him to do my taxes because he’s a businessman and that’s valid, but I guarantee you right now that in London somewhere, in garages, they’re learning Aerosmith and Guns N' Roses.

“There’s a bunch of 18-year-[old] kids in there with guitars and drums and they’re learning hard rock. It’s the same with the United States: there’s all these young bands that want to resurge that whole area of hard rock.”

Simmons has expressed his views on the death of rock music on several occasions. Last year, the Kiss bassist told Gulf News: “Rock is dead. And that's because new bands haven't taken the time to create glamour, excitement and epic stuff.” 

More recently, in an interview with the Q104.3 radio station, Simmons blamed young fans for making the genre financially unfeasible by using streaming services.

Elsewhere in the interview, Cooper opined that while rock music isn't at the heart of the mainstream, it's “where it should be right now”.

“We’re not at the Grammys… Rock ’n’ roll is outside looking in right now, and that gives us that outlaw attitude,” he says.

“The one kind of music that started and never ended was hard rock. It went to punk, it went to disco, it went to hip-hop, it went to grunge, but the one thing that went through the middle of it was hard rock.”

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at GuitarWorld.com from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.