Nita Strauss states whole consensus in Alice Cooper camp is do whatever will make the show better
Alice Cooper guitarist Nita Strauss was recently interviewed by Andrew Catania of All That Shreds to promote her debut solo instrumental album Controlled Chaos.
When asked how she got the gig with Alice Cooper, Strauss advised (with slight edits): “When Orianthi left the band, I know that they were looking for a female guitar player. I was getting emails saying ‘Hey, they’re looking for somebody. Do you want me to put you in touch with them?’ The first person to connect the dots was Kip Winger. I had been doing double duty with the Iron Maidens and Femme Fatale on the Monsters of Rock Cruise, and I was talking to Kip after one of the shows, and he said, ‘What are you doing besides this? Are you doing any other gigs?’
I said, ‘You know, if you hear of anything, I would appreciate it to keep me in mind.’ That’s been my MO my entire career as anybody that I talked to, I say, ‘Hey, here’s my information. Here’s my social media. If you hear of anything, I would appreciate you keep me in mind too.’ That simple sentence goes a long way because the next time they hear of something they go, ‘Hey, you know who might be good is this guitar player that I talked to.’ So he contacted Bob Ezrin and Shep Gordon who has been managing Alice since the very beginning and sent them my information. Here I am today in his band.”
In terms of the one thing that Strauss enjoys about touring and one thing that she has learned from Alice Cooper, the female guitarist indicated:
“I love the freedom that he gives us to play his songs. It’s not often that you play with somebody of Alice’s status that says, here’s the song. Do something to elevate the song. There are about 18 songs that don’t have a guitar solo in the original song. We put long extended solos that Ryan and I trade off because it elevates the song and elevates the show to another level. It was unexpected when I joined the band because I was ready to walk on eggshells and not try to make any waves. I’m not trying to stand out at all. The whole consensus is the Alice Cooper camp does whatever will make the show better. If that means running around and spinning the guitar and lighting things on fire to make the audience have the best show, then that’s what we do. It’s been amazing to experience that and to grow as a performer within the confines of the show.
One thing that I’ve learned touring with Alice, he’s 70, I’m 31, and even when I have days where I’m tired, I do seven days a week on this tour. I do five shows with Alice, and I do two clinics at Guitar Center. So I haven’t had a day off for six weeks. There are days when I’m like, I’m tired, I’m hungry, I’m exhausted, I feel like I don’t really feel like going on stage and giving it a 100, 110 percent, but seeing Alice at more than twice my age, going out there and giving 110 percent every single night just shows that if he can do it, anybody can do it.”
You can read the rest of the interview with Strauss at All That Shreds.