School's Out (song)

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"School's Out"
Alice Cooper School's out 45.jpg
Cover of the 1972 US single
Single by Alice Cooper
from the album School's Out
B-side "Gutter Cat"
ReleasedApril 26, 1972 (1972-04-26)
Format 7-inch single
Recorded1972
Genre
Length3:29
Label Warner Bros.
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Bob Ezrin
Alice Cooper singles chronology
"Be My Lover"
(1972)
"School's Out"
(1972)
"Elected"
(1972)
Alternative cover
School's Out - Alice Cooper.jpg
Cover of the 1972 German single

"School's Out" is a 1972 song first recorded as the title track single of Alice Cooper's fifth album and written by the Alice Cooper band.

Alice Cooper (band) American rock band

Alice Cooper was an American rock band formed in Phoenix, Arizona in 1964. The band consisted of lead singer Vince Furnier, Glen Buxton, Michael Bruce, Dennis Dunaway, and Neal Smith (drums). Furnier legally changed his name to Alice Cooper and has had a solo career under that name since the band became inactive in 1975. The band was notorious for their elaborate, theatrical shock rock stage shows. In 2011, the original Alice Cooper band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

<i>Schools Out</i> (album) 1972 studio album by Alice Cooper

School's Out is the fifth studio album by American rock band Alice Cooper, released in 1972. Following on from the success of Killer, School's Out reached No. 2 on the US Billboard 200 chart and No. 1 on the Canadian RPM 100 Top Albums chart, holding the top position for four weeks. The single "School's Out" reached No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100, No. 3 on the Canadian RPM Top Singles Chart and went to No. 1 in the UK Singles Chart.

Contents

Inspiration and writing

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.'"

Cooper has also said it was inspired by a line from a Bowery Boys movie. On his radio show, "Nights with Alice Cooper", he joked that the main riff of the song was inspired by a song by Miles Davis. [1] Cooper said that guitarist Glen Buxton created the song's opening riff.

The Dead End Kids were a group of young actors from New York City who appeared in Sidney Kingsley's Broadway play Dead End in 1935. In 1937 producer Samuel Goldwyn brought all of them to Hollywood and turned the play into a film. They proved to be so popular that they continued to make movies under various monikers, including the Little Tough Guys, the East Side Kids, and the Bowery Boys, until 1958.

Nights with Alice Cooper is a radio show hosted by Detroit born rock and roll artist and shock rock pioneer Alice Cooper. It is syndicated by United Stations Radio Networks and broadcast on a wide variety of affiliate radio stations in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and Europe. The most recent show is also streamed online in a continuous loop by Radionomy; this stream is also used for the official Nights with Alice Cooper app for iOS and Android, which additionally offers "exclusive content" as well as interaction with other fans.

Miles Davis American jazz musician

Miles Dewey Davis III was an American jazz trumpeter, bandleader, and composer. He is among the most influential and acclaimed figures in the history of jazz and 20th century music. Davis adopted a variety of musical directions in a five-decade career that kept him at the forefront of many major stylistic developments in jazz.

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. "Innocence" in the lyric "...and we got no innocence" is frequently changed in concert to "intelligence" and sometimes replaced with "etiquette." The song appropriately ends with a school bell sound that fades out.

Summer vacation is a school Break in summer between school years and the break in the school academic year. Students and teaching staff are typically off between eight and nine weeks, depending on the country and district. In the United States, summer break is approximately 2 to 3 months, with students typically finishing the school year between late-May and mid-June and starting the new year between early-August and early-September. In the Azerbaijan, Republic of Ireland, Italy, Greece, Lithuania, Latvia, Lebanon, Romania and Russia, the summer break is normally three months, compared to six to eight weeks in Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, Pakistan, India, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Germany.

School bell sound making device designed to communicate with students

The ringing of a school bell is a signal that tells a school's students when it is time to go to class in the morning or afternoon and when it is time to change classes during the day as well as when students are dismissed from school. Typically the first bell tells the students that it is time to report to class, and the bell that occurs shortly after that means that the students are late. There may also be a warning bell between the first bell and the late bell.

Later performances saw Alice Cooper incorporate parts of the first verse in "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2", a song by Pink Floyd (also about school, and produced by Bob Ezrin) into "School's Out."

Pink Floyd English rock band

Pink Floyd were an English rock band formed in London in 1965. They achieved international acclaim with their progressive and psychedelic music. Distinguished by their philosophical lyrics, sonic experimentation, extended compositions, and elaborate live shows, they are one of the most commercially successful and influential groups in popular music history.

Bob Ezrin Canadian music producer and keyboardist

Robert Alan Ezrin is a Canadian music producer and keyboardist, best known for his work with Lou Reed, Alice Cooper, Kiss, Pink Floyd, Deep Purple, Peter Gabriel, and Phish. As of 2010, Ezrin's career in music had spanned four decades and his production work continued into the 21st century, with acts such as Deftones and Thirty Seconds to Mars. Since co-founding interactive media company 7th Level in 1993, Ezrin has branched out into philanthropy and activism, with music also introduced into this realm of his life, underpinning projects such as Music Rising and Young Artists for Haiti. Ezrin is also involved in education, co-founding the Nimbus School of Recording Arts in 2009.

Release and reception

"School's Out" became Alice Cooper's first major hit single, reaching #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 pop singles chart and propelling the album to #2 on the Billboard 200 pop albums chart. It was the highest-charting single for the Alice Cooper band, and its #7 peak position was matched only by "Poison" among Cooper's solo efforts. Billboard ranked it as the No. 75 song for 1972. [2] In Canada, the single went to #3 on the RPM Top Singles Chart [3] following the album reaching #1. [4] In Britain, the song went to #1 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 Billboard Hot 100 is the music industry standard record chart in the United States for songs, published weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on sales, radio play, and online streaming in the United States.

The Billboard 200 is a record chart ranking the 200 most popular music albums and EPs in the United States. It is published weekly by Billboard magazine. It is frequently used to convey the popularity of an artist or groups of artists. Often, a recording act will be remembered by its "number ones", those of their albums that outperformed all others during at least one week. The chart grew from a weekly top 10 list in 1956 to become a top 200 in May 1967, and acquired its present title in March 1992. Its previous names include the Billboard Top LPs (1961–72), Billboard Top LPs & Tape (1972–84), Billboard Top 200 Albums (1984–85) and Billboard Top Pop Albums.

Poison (Alice Cooper song) song by Alice Cooper

"Poison" is a song by American rock musician Alice Cooper. Written by Cooper, Desmond Child, and John McCurry, the song was released worldwide as a single in late-1989 from Cooper's eighteenth album, Trash (1989). The song was one of Cooper's biggest hit singles in the United States, peaking at number 7 on the Billboard Hot 100, while peaking at number 2 in the UK Singles Chart, only being held off the top spot by the dance record, "Swing the Mood" by Jive Bunny & the Mastermixers. "Poison" is one of Alice Cooper's best known songs. It is ranked by Billboard as the "91st top song of 1989", while Ultimate Classic Rock ranked it as the "7th best Alice Cooper song", commenting "Poison sounds like a typical ’80s pop-metal number at times, but Cooper’s intensity brings it to a whole other level."

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.

Single (music) Type of music release usually containing one or two tracks

In the music industry, a single is a type of release, typically a song recording of fewer tracks than an LP record or an album. This can be released for sale to the public in a variety of different formats. In most cases, a single is a song that is released separately from an album, although it usually also appears on an album. Typically, these are the songs from albums that are released separately for promotional uses such as digital download or commercial radio airplay and are expected to be the most popular. In other cases a recording released as a single may not appear on an album.

Monaural sound intended to be heard as if it were emanating from one position

Monaural or monophonic sound reproduction is sound intended to be heard as if it were emanating from one position. This contrasts with stereophonic sound or stereo, which uses two separate audio channels to reproduce sound from two microphones on the right and left side, which is reproduced with two separate loudspeakers to give a sense of the direction of sound sources. In mono, only one loudspeaker is necessary, but, when played through multiple loudspeakers or headphones, identical signals are fed to each speaker, resulting in the perception of one-channel sound "imaging" in one sonic space between the speakers. Monaural recordings, like stereo ones, typically use multiple microphones fed into multiple channels on a recording console, but each channel is "panned" to the center. In the final stage, the various center-panned signal paths are usually mixed down to two identical tracks, which, because they are identical, are perceived upon playback as representing a single unified signal at a single place in the soundstage. In some cases, multitrack sources are mixed to a one-track tape, thus becoming one signal. In the mastering stage, particularly in the days of mono records, the one- or two-track mono master tape was then transferred to a one-track lathe intended to be used in the pressing of a monophonic record. Today, however, monaural recordings are usually mastered to be played on stereo and multi-track formats, yet retain their center-panned mono soundstage characteristics.

Sound effect artificially created or enhanced sounds, or sound processes used to emphasize artistic or other content of films, television shows, live performance, animation, video games, music, or other media

A sound effect is an artificially created or enhanced sound, or sound process used to emphasize artistic or other content of films, television shows, live performance, animation, video games, music, or other media. These are normally created with foley. In motion picture and television production, a sound effect is a sound recorded and presented to make a specific storytelling or creative point without the use of dialogue or music. The term often refers to a process applied to a recording, without necessarily referring to the recording itself. In professional motion picture and television production, dialogue, music, and sound effects recordings are treated as separate elements. Dialogue and music recordings are never referred to as sound effects, even though the processes applied to such as reverberation or flanging effects, often are called "sound effects".

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

"School's Out" was ranked #326 on Rolling Stone 's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. [5] In 2009 it was named the 35th best hard rock song of all time by VH1 [6] and the song appeared on the TV show American Idol in 2010. The Guardian placed it as number 3 on its list of "The 20 best glam-rock songs of all time." [7] In 2018, Ian Chapman and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has called it a "glam rock anthem." [8] [9] Nick Talevski has called it a "hard rock anthem" on his book Rock Obituaries: Knocking On Heaven's Door. [10]

The song has been used in movies including Scream , Dazed and Confused , Rock 'n' Roll High School , and I Love You, Beth Cooper .

In 2004, the song was also used in a Staples television commercial for the back to school retail period in which Alice appeared as himself. [11] A young girl with black hair, obviously disappointed that school is starting soon, says, "I thought you said 'School's out forever.'" Alice (who's pushing a shopping cart full of her school supplies) replies, "No, no, no ... the song goes, 'School's out for summer.' Nice try though." The song was also used in a 2009 Arby's commercial. In 2018, a commercial for Phoenix-based Desert Financial Credit Union used the song, as Alice is from Phoenix.

The title of the 1992 Degrassi movie, School's Out , comes from this song.

In 2012, the song was featured in musical TV series Glee , episode "Choke" (aired on May 1), in its third season. The song was performed by Mark Salling as his character Puck. [12]

The Simpsons episode "Kamp Krusty" had an excerpt of the song's refrain used during Bart's dream sequence with the destruction of Springfield Elementary on its last day of school before summer vacation, and in the episode I'm Spelling as Fast as I Can, Principal Skinner sings his own version - "School's back in session, let's begin our lesson!"

Cooper performs the song as the closing act of his episode on The Muppet Show where he dances with various large Muppet monsters who gleefully act out his lyrics, including causing numerous explosions. The song was also performed in the finale of the ninth season of American Idol by Idol contestants and Cooper himself.

The live version from Classicks is featured as downloadable content in Rock Band 3 .

Cover versions

Daphne and Celeste version

"School's Out"
Single by Daphne and Celeste
from the album We Didn't Say That!
ReleasedAugust 21, 2000 (US)
Format
  • CD single
  • cassette single
Recorded1999
Length3:23
Label Phantom Sound/Visi
Songwriter(s)
Daphne and Celeste singles chronology
"U.G.L.Y."
(2000)
"School's Out"
(2000)
"You & I Alone"
(2015)

Pop duo Daphne and Celeste released a cover of the song in 2000, although much of this cover is original, in a pop-rap style. The chorus is based on that in Alice Cooper's version, and some other elements of it have been retained as well. The single is remixed from the version released on their album We Didn't Say That! , removing a prominent synthesizer line from the chorus among other, more minor changes. The B-side, "The Camp Song", was the only non-album D&C song available until the release of their fourth single almost 15 years later. School's Out was their first and only single released in Japan.

Track listing
  1. "School's Out"
  2. "The Camp Song"
  3. "School's Out" (Gridlock Mix)
  4. "School's Out" (video)
"School's Out"
GWAR Schools Out.jpg
Single by Gwar
from the album Beyond Hell
Released2006
FormatPromo CD, digital single
Recorded2006
Length3:23
Label DRT Entertainment
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Devin Townsend & Cory Smoot
Gwar singles chronology
"A Soundtrack to Kill Yourself To"
(1997)
"School's Out"
(2006)

Gwar version

"School's Out" was also covered by the band Gwar. It was the first release from their 2006 album Beyond Hell . It was released as a digital download through services such as iTunes and eMusic, and as a promotional CD sent to radio stations. The band has stated in several interviews that they had not intended on recording a cover song for Beyond Hell, but the record company insisted that they do a cover that might get some airplay, and would be accessible to a wider audience than their first choice for a single, "Eighth Lock". [ citation needed ]

Other covers

Chart performance

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References

  1. Originally stated May 4, 2008; clarified as just a joke on June 3, 2008.
  2. Billboard Year-End Hot 100 singles of 1972
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