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And it worked. It was a big gamble, because anytime a lead singer breaks away from the group to do an album, it's a gamble. I mean, Mick Jagger even had a hard time. But we came up with a great album and we came up with a great stage show that took three months to rehearse and ten hours a day, but it was the biggest show anybody had ever seen. And at that point, we just kept going.
Your macabre stage show and persona have always gotten people talking. What is your favorite rumor you've heard about you?
You know, there's so many good ones that you sit back and go, "How did that get started?" There was one that my father was Captain Kangaroo. I went, "Really?" Years later, I heard Captain Kangaroo was Marilyn Manson's father, and then I realized it was interchangeable.
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And then there was the one that I played Eddie Haskell in Leave It to Beaver. That would've put me at about 75 years old. And unless I have red curly hair and freckles, I can't really picture me being Eddie Haskell. But I know how that one started. A reporter asked me, "What were you like as a kid?" I used to say I was a regular Eddie Haskell. In other words, I was like him: kind of a suck-up to the parents, but in the background I was really kind of a real rat. And that got to be I was Eddie Haskell. This was before Ferris Bueller; I now say I was like Ferris Bueller.
Back then, there was no internet, so everything was word of mouth and everything was myth and urban legend and stuff. By the time we got to England, there was already that we set German shepherds on fire and sacrificed puppies and things like that. And I'd get out of town and go, "I would never hurt an animal ever." People, I have no problem with, but animals I would never hurt.
Lastly, since horror is such a part of your show, what was the first movie monster to scare you?
The only movie I ever ran out of the movie theater while it was playing was Creature From the Black Lagoon, which I saw when I was about 8. It was the scene where the guy is in the tent, and you see from the creature's point of view, and the guy turns around, and the creature takes his face right off with his claw. And I ran out of the movie theater. For some reason, Frankenstein and Dracula didn't scare me as much as the Creature From the Black Lagoon.