Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
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When Jefferson Airplane's Grace Slick was a child, 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' was often read to her. And apparently it left an impression. Originally written for her first band the Great Society in 1965 and released by the Airplane in 1967, Slick's 'Rabbit' became synonymous with psychedelic rock. Covered by everyone from George Benson and Lizzie Borden to Homer Simpson, this song compared the Alice plots to acid trips. Still inspired by Carroll, Slick did a series of paintings based on Alice in the '90s.
Even as he approached middle age, former music journalist Brian Warner wasn't sure if he wanted to give up his gothy stage persona, Marilyn Manson. So it made sense for him to channel 'Alice,' he told the Albuquerque Journal, which "was about a person who doesn't know who their identity was supposed to be." Written like a diary, the 2007 'Eat Me, Drink Me' album, featuring the title song, is an 'Alice' tale, except in this case the rabbit hole leads to hell -- or, at least, something close to it.
Three years out of rehab, Nicks sought introspection with the 1989 album 'The Other Side of the Mirror.' Having spent so many years dedicated to Fleetwood Mac, she lamented over failed relationships, telling the Sunday Mail in Australia, "I'm the one who has ended up alone. Every relationship ended because of my lifestyle." In 'Alice,' she writes about her past through the character, seemingly longing for a life she once knew, yet uncertain if she wants it back. She would eventually return to the other side of the mirror, rejoining her band a few years later.
This sitar-driven psychedelic song, originally written as a soul number, was inspired by a fling co-writer Dave Stewart had with Stevie Nicks. It was Stewart who came up with concept for the Alice-themed video, which was a huge hit on MTV in 1985. In the video, Stewart is seen sitting on a mushroom playing sitar while Petty dons a Mad Hatter hat. Curiously, Alice later becomes a three-layered cake, which is cut up and devoured. Today, Petty's Mad Hatter headgear is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
When Tim Burton presented Smith a music award in London last year, he made it clear how much Smith's band, the Cure, meant to him. "I just wanna say when I was chained to a desk, and I was f---ing depressed this music was the only thing that saved me," he told Smith at the NME Awards. "I just want to thank you for inspiring me." (Apparently, Smith also inspired Burton's messy hairdo.) On Burton's 'Alice' soundtrack, Smith is the only performer who sings a song from the animated Disney 'Alice in Wonderland,' sung in the original movie by Alice herself.
Not long before his death, John Lennon told Playboy that the first two lines of the 1967 Beatles tune 'I Am the Walrus' were written during two different acid trips, which might explain the bizarre, nonsensical lyrics. The walrus character, he added, was inspired by 'The Walrus and the Carpenter,' a poem recited by Tweedledee and Tweedledum in 'Through the Looking-Glass.'
After a brief foray into dance music, Jewel Kilcher returned to her folk-pop roots with an autobiographical album in 2006. The songs from 'Goodbye Alice in Wonderland' -- including the title track -- represent chapters, detailing her upbringing in Alaska, a period of homelessness and her eventual musical success. "I don't consider myself Alice in Wonderland," she told the Flint Journal. "Certainly, my life has been a fantastic ride, but I'm more talking about the little fantasies that we kid ourselves with."
This time, it's Steven Tyler donning the Mad Hatter topper in a Lewis Carroll-inspired video, though his lid looks more like something from Slash's hat rack. The 2001 Aerosmith song 'Sunshine' contained numerous 'Alice' references, including "I followed Alice into Wonderland," "Took to the Hatter like a walk in the park" and "I chased that rabbit up her Bodhi tree." The video features lots of 'Alice' characters in a woodsy setting.
Never ones to shy from theatrics, the guys who brought us an album named 'Wonderland' also offered up an 'Alice'-themed video for this 1992 song about taking control of your life. Andy Bell, the singing half of the Erasure duo, has said the song was inspired by the two 'Alice' books.
This rainy-day jazz song, with its subtle floor bass and sleepy clarinet, seems better suited for a film noir than a musical. However, it was originally written for a 1992 stage production based on Alice Liddell, which ran in Europe. A decade later, Waits released an album based on those songs. According to the singer, it almost never happened. He told the Minneapolis Star Tribune he was in a curiosity shop buying a taxidermied anaconda -- honest, he said that -- when someone broke into his car and stole the music and recordings for the show. The theater later paid $4,000 to get it back.
After the 2003 Grammy awards ceremony, songwriter Linda Perry pulled Gwen Stefani into a choke hold and playfully demanded they work together. When the two did eventually pair up, Stefani struggled with writer's block, so the two wrote this goading song, featuring the line, "Take a chance, you stupid ho." In the seven-minute video, Stefani seeks help for writer's block when she's thrown into a Wonderland-like world with Stefani portraying several characters inspired by Carroll's books.
This tune won't go down as one of the greatest 'Alice' songs, but its inspiration is worthy of mention. 'Mad Hatter' was written as an homage to late band mate Leon Wilkeson, who was known as the Mad Hatter for his outlandish collection of headpieces. The 2004 song makes reference to the famous plane crash that killed three band members in 1977, suggesting Wilkeson, who survived it, had nine lives. Yet, Wilkeson, like many Skynyrd band mates, eventually did die young. He was just 49 when he succumbed to chronic liver and lung disease, making that "nine lives" line seem a bit off the mark.
A former literature major with a colorful life story -- he's also a model and an artist known to paint with his own blood -- the drug-troubled Doherty released 'Through the Looking Glass' as a B-side to his 2009 single 'The Last of the English Roses.' In this song, the rabbit hole has an entirely new meaning: "Through the looking glass in between your thighs/It's really no small surprise/How it goes straight down the rabbit hole."
While this youthful band doesn't make any overt 'Alice' references in its music, fans claim to see many little clues -- the song title 'Mad as Rabbits' being one. And Panic! At the Disco are, after all, known to throw short literary lines into their songs. Besides, the Daily Telegraph once described their surreal live act -- which sometimes incorporates mimes, contortionists and dominatrix -- as something akin to "Tim Burton directing a ballet production of 'Alice in Wonderland.'" That's enough to convince us.
In 1987, Siouxsie Sioux, the queen mother of goth pop, decided to record a covers album, featuring intriguing takes on songs by Billie Holiday, the Doors, Bob Dylan and more. 'Hall of Mirrors,' originally by Traffic, is delivered with her trademark droning vocals. Playing on the mirror reference, the song was coupled with an 'Alice'-inspired video that includes clips from the 1985 'Alice in Wonderland' movie that featured Carol Channing as the White Queen.
Syd Barrett lived a complicated life, fueled by drug use and mental illness, which contributed to his leaving Pink Floyd in 1968. But shortly before he disappeared from the public eye for good in the mid-'70s, his old band penned 'Country Song,' which must have appealed to Barrett with its references to the Red Queen and White King. After his death, his sister Beth Neil wrote in the Sunday (UK) Mirror, "He loved children's books and was fascinated by 'Alice In Wonderland.' Fantasy was always more interesting to him than reality." Which might explain his years in seclusion.
Not only did only did the jazz legend record an entire album inspired by the two 'Alice books,' he also named his business Mad Hatter Recording Studios. The 1978 'Mad Hatter' album, on which this song appears, features the talents of popular session drummer Steve Gadd, whose most recognizable work is the intro on Paul Simon's '50 Ways to Leave Your Lover.' Other songs on the 'Mad Hatter' album include 'Tweedle Dum' and 'The Mad Hatter Rhapsody.'
When artists feel the need for introspection, Wonderland is a good place to visit, as did Marcy frontman John Wozniak with his 2009 'Leaving Wonderland' album. After dealing with a seven-month bout of depression, the normally lighthearted Wozniak used songwriting as art therapy. In 'Sherry Fraser,' he speaks of lost love and sings, "The Mad Hatter, he waited for Alice to come to tea again."
John Lennon's son Julian provided the first inspiration for this psychedelic masterpiece. After young Julian drew a picture in school that he called "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds," his father -- ever the observational writer -- figured there was a song in it. From there he turned to Lewis Carroll -- as he later would for 'I Am the Walrus' -- imagining Alice on a strange boat ride. The famous 1967 'Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band' album cover features a cutout of dozens of iconic figures, including Carroll.
Of the 16 artists featured on the 'Almost Alice' album, which is being released in conjunction with the movie, Lavigne is the only one who will actually be heard in the film -- and only during the closing credits. But, hey -- any spot in a Tim Burton movie is a good one. This angsty song, titled 'Alice,' is her second to land on a fantasy soundtrack. 'Keep Holding On' appeared in the dragon tale 'Eragon.'