My God (Lace & Whiskey, 1977)
“My God” Lyrics:
If I should find myself in blackest night,
and fear is stabbin’ me all over,
a tiny prayer cracks the dark with light,
and I here sounds behind my wall.
Inside, a still, small voice, it calls and calls.
Then like a thunder bolt, it falls and falls…
When life becomes more real than children’s games,
or we’ve become too old to play them,
We’ll grow old gracefully, we’ll hide our shame.
but there’s that voice behind the wall.
And like my conscience, it is still and small.
Each word is mercy, protects us all…
“And like my conscience, it is still and small.
Each word is mercy, protects us all…”
I was a boy, when tempted,
fell sometimes, and fell so low,
no one could see me,
save for the eyes of Him that sees my crime.
When sheep, like me, have drifted lost,
all frightened children who are tempest tossed,
down flies His wrath like an albatross…
The Lace and Whiskey LP was released on April 29, 1977. This LP featured a new character, Maurice Escargot. A heavy-drinking detective (from the 1940s), Escargot is a flawed man but much less sinister in nature compared to previous characters.
“’Lace and Whiskey’ is an album many fans love to hate, though why is a bit of a mystery. Sure, it isn’t up there with the real classics, but most of the material is still great stuff…the title track and ‘It’s Hot Tonight’ are great rockers, and ‘My God’ along with ‘King Of The Silver Screen’ are both classics. Maybe not essential but still well worth getting.” – Lace & Whiskey discography page, SickthingsUK.co.uk (https://bit.ly/3gOxZg4)
The album demonstrates the teamwork and creativity of Alice Cooper, Bob Ezrin, and Dick Wagner. Cooper, Ezrin, and Wagner were not afraid to think outside the box during the disco-laden late ‘70s. In this case, a fresh new perspective was delivered on the Lace and Whiskey LP.
The live show during this era was entitled “The King of The Silver Screen” and lasted nearly two years. Complete with dancing chickens, Tommy guns, TV commercials, and the guillotine (of course), it was filled with intrinsic humor and a little less of the macabre-themed underpinnings.
By the end of the tour, Alice had been put through the wringer. The drinking and nonstop touring had left him in need of an intervention. His wife, Sheryl, and manager, Shep Gordon, convincingly pressed Alice to check into Cornell Medical Center in White Plains, New York.
Alice resurfaced, sobered, and inspired with new material for his next album. His stay and the characters found in White Plains, New York, would soon become the infamous album, From The Inside.
SIDE NOTE: This post is a re-write focusing on perhaps one of our all-time favorite Alice Cooper songs, “My God.” However, there is much more to say about this album; we will get there in time.
Interestingly enough, revisiting and “polishing” some of the older posts in this journey reveals the process our Lord uses as we grow and learn more about Him.
As we walk and learn more about ourselves through the eyes of our Creator, we notice certain things and areas in our life that need to be redone, fine-tuned, or removed before the next steps can be taken.
Waiting upon the Lord isn’t always the easiest process. However, the willingness to do so assures that He is the One guiding our journey. Knowing this, we must ask ourselves, “is this about me, or is this about Him?”
A good friend once said, “the Lord answers the prayers of His people with, “NO. SLOW. GROW… or GO!” Profound words. Let us heed and notice the process and trust that He is ALWAYS in the process of doing and revealing marvelous and beautiful things!
“My God” is the final track on the album, which seems fitting. Like one of David’s Psalms, it finds Alice crying out to God.
Alice has often referred to himself as the modern-day Prodigal Son. Both he and his wife, Sheryl, are PKs (preacher’s kids). They both grew up in the church and knew God’s word.
While some previous albums and songs had religious connotations, “My God” was the first to reveal an all-out display of praise and admiration for the Creator of all things, great and small. It is a magnificent song and most likely inspired and helped pioneer other forms of Christian rock during that time.
If I should find myself in blackest night
And fear is stabbin’ me all over,
A tiny prayer cracks the dark with light
And I hear sounds behind my wall,
Inside, a still small voice, it calls and calls
Then like a thunderbolt
It falls and falls,
When life becomes more real than children’s games
Or we’ve become too old to play them,
We’ll grow old gracefully; We’ll hide our shame
But there’s that voice behind the wall
And like my conscience, it is still and small
Each word is mercy, protects us all
I was a boy, when tempted, fell sometimes
And fell so low no one could see me
Save for the eyes of Him that sees my crime
When sheep like me have drifted lost
All frightened children who are tempest tossed
Down flies His wrath like an albatross,
Notice that ALL the lyrics to this song are reiterated in this post. The song’s lyrics are just that good. Lines like “still, small voice” and “sheep – drifted lost” point directly to God’s Word. Specifically, 1 Kings 19:9-13 and Luke 15:1-7.
And the word of the Lord came to him: “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
10 He replied, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.”
11 The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”
Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind, there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.
Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” – 1 Kings 19:9-13
In the above-listed verses, we find Elijah waiting upon the presence of the Lord. After howling winds, an earthquake, and a wildfire pass by, he notices that God has still not said a word. Finally, the Lord uses a gentle whisper to speak to Elijah.
We often look for God and expect Him to say and do something so profound and monumental that we never take the time to be still and listen. How many of us only believe that God speaks to us at church, during conferences, at revivals, or through the words of a pastor?
Even amid fame, Rock ‘n’ Roll, and alcohol, Alice knew God’s voice. He had learned to humbly and quietly listen to God’s guidance. He knew it was time to come back to his Heavenly Father. It was time to seek the Truth he had been shown and taught as a young man.
Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”
3 Then Jesus told them this parable: 4 “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? 5 And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders 6 and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ 7 I tell you that in the same way, there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. – Luke 15:1-7
Notice how Jesus compares God’s children to sheep in those verses and himself as the Shepherd. That parable would have made sense to the people he spoke with, and it still makes sense today based on what we know and have been taught about farmers and agriculture.
Alice points directly to these verses in his lyrics – “When sheep, like me, have drifted lost.” The Coop has often said that God allowed him to experience many things and reeled him back into the fold.
Doesn’t it seem as if the song “My God” was a direct expression of that process or, at least, the beginning of that process?
It was time for Alice to start finding answers to those more profound questions in life while also accepting the Lord’s forgiveness.
Honestly, this song fits perfectly within the scope of events and frustrations Alice must have been dealing with – the original band’s breakup and the initial success of his solo career spearheaded by the Welcome To My Nightmare LP and tour. Then, the emergence of disco and the decline of ‘70s-era Rock.
God uses our experiences (even some dark ones) to show us the brightness of His Love. A Love filled with Grace and Mercy. An unconditional Love that offers us a better path – a better way! God’s Love for us is undying – it’s EXTREME!
He sent His Only Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to earth. With that selfless act, we are not judged but forgiven (John 3:16-18).
The acceptance of Christ and His death (Romans 10:9-10), proclaiming Him as Lord (2 Corinthians 4:5), and entering into a relationship with Him (Hebrews 11:6), drives out the darkness of this world and replaces that with the Light and goodness of His Love. It’s a process – a journey! One that lasts a lifetime.
Jesus, through His Holy Spirit, will not beat us over the head with a hammer (or a Bible). But He’s always standing there – wanting, willing, waiting, ready to catch us. May we be still and let Him bring us back to the fold. May we be still and know that HE IS GOD!
Wrapping up this week’s post, we must ask some tough questions. Are we outside of the fold looking in? Are we amongst the 99? Are we taking the time to be still and listen? Are we in tune with that still, small voice?
The Love of our Lord is magnificent. Jesus came to this earth – was shamed, beaten, spat upon, falsely judged, etc., to show us the radiance of God’s Love. The Love of the Father was made manifest through Christ. His Love is the same then as it is now…but it must be accepted.
He wants us to ask for Him, understand Him, to yearn for Him…are we ready to receive our Creator’s gift? Have we accepted His Son?
If we are vigilant, we can hear His “still, small voice; it calls and calls.” What is He saying to you? Listen carefully and heed His words.
In conclusion, it’s surprising to see how the critics and fan base reacted to this album. It seems most either loved or hated the LP. However, from FWA’s perspective, it’s a fascinating piece of art.
Alice, Dick Wagner, and Bob Ezrin brought a new style and flair to Alice’s music while still paying homage to the original band’s roots. However, without the band, Alice could write songs based on his viewpoint and concepts without interference.
Many fans are enamored with the band years and only accept those as being “Alice Cooper.” However, if you look at the entirety of Alice Cooper‘s discography, would it have become as diverse as it is?
One of the fascinating parts of this journey is learning just how diverse Alice’s music and career have been. Each LP holds acclaim. While some may sound more similar than others, it’s evident that each album carries its weight. Each LP stands alone.
As listeners embrace each song, concept, and LP, they wonder, “what’s Alice going to do next?” You don’t just listen to Alice Cooper; you experience Alice Cooper.
Isn’t that also what we enjoy most about life and experience? Not knowing what’s going to happen next. Filled with anticipation and excitement, we flip to a new season in life, wondering what God has in store for us next.
That’s it for this week. Be well, and catch you next Friday!
Until then, Keep Walkin’ in Faith and Rockin’ with Alice!
Have you accepted Christ as your Savior?
If you would like to accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, please pray the following prayer:
"God, I believe in you and your son Jesus Christ. I believe that Jesus died on the cross and rose from the grave to save me. Today, I invite Jesus into my heart to stay. I make you Lord over my life. Make me new. Wash me, Lord, and cleanse me. In Jesus Name, Amen"
If you have just prayed that prayer, we want to celebrate your new victory with you. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can welcome you into the kingdom. We don't want you to have to walk alone and we have some resources we would like the opportunity to share with you.
NOTE: We’d also like to share the following resources used by “Fridays With Alice.” Without these books and sites, this would be a much more complicated endeavor. So be sure to check them out if interested.
Click the images to learn more about these resources: