SickthingsUK: Ron Volz

Ron Volz joined the Alice Cooper team in 1969 working as a roadie, and eventually ended up as a key member of the team, creating props and special effects for the show, and playing the executioner on the late 70s tours. He even received an 'associate producer' credit on 'Flush The Fashion'. After leaving Alice in the early 80s he became a production designer for videos and commercials including the Saturn commercial featuring Alice. He's worked on videos by Van Halen, Judas Priest, Guns n'Roses (including 'The Garden'), Steve Vai, David Lee Roth, Garth Brooks, Faith Hill, Bon Jovi ('Living On A Prayer', 'You Give Love A Bad Name') and many others.

In an article for the Washington Post in 2014 Volz recalled his part in the beginnings of theatrical rock.

In addition to employing the snakes and guillotines that would make him famous, he and his resourceful crew cut up pillows and floated the feathers into strobe lights. They turned backstage mops into weapons. Ron Volz, one of Cooper’s early effects men, had spent his youth setting off fireworks. So when somebody on the crew suggested, 'We can go get smoke bombs!' he bought some at a fireworks stand, twisted three wicks together and tried them out in a coffee can. The experiment worked.
So during one of Cooper's encores, Volz crawled to the front of the stage, careful not to disturb the show, and lit the wicks in three separate cans. "It would proceed to smoke out the entire nightclub," recalls Volz, now a veteran art director for dozens of music videos and TV commercials. "I'd burn my finger many times."

"I would describe my lifestyle as Rockstar... I'm not one, but I spent the 70's on tour with Alice Cooper.. I helped design the stage show and travelled throughout Europe, South America, Australia, Canada, And more.. I got to make friends along the way and have a lot of great stories to tell... We travelled with our own charter planes in those days and I guess you might say it was a bit cowboy... That was my introduction to young manhood for 10 years... Looking back I have to say that I am grateful that I was a bit conservative and fortunately I kept all things in moderation and I'm OK... I crossed over to art direct music video's In the 80' and 90's (Rock and Country)... I love my career and it is a part of my lifestyle... I guess I never had a real job and that's ok with me..."