Who Are the Hollywood Vampires: All About Johnny Depp's Band
Johnny Depp has continued performing alongside Alice Cooper and Joe Perry amid shocking abuse allegations by estranged wife Amber Heard
The show must go on – and it has for actor Johnny Depp, who has continued to tour with his band the Hollywood Vampires despite the shocking domestic abuse allegations levied against him by wife Amber Heard last week.
(In a response to Heard’s claim, Depp’s divorce attorney, Laura Wasser, said in court documents that “Amber is attempting to secure a premature financial resolution by alleging abuse.”)
While Depp is known best as an Oscar-nominated actor, famous for his turns in both serious dramas like Black Mass as well as franchise films like Pirates of the Caribbean, he’s spent much of the last year playing guitar with the recently formed supergroup.
Releasing their first album in September 2015 – an impressive record that featured guest appearances by everyone from Paul McCartney to Dave Grohl – the group announced their tour soon after, taking them from Los Angeles’ The Roxy to Brazil.
How they met
Depp and Cooper first met in 2011 while the actor was filming Dark Shadows, according to Rolling Stone. The musician invited Depp to join him for a performance at London’s 100 Club, which eventually led to jam sessions and, even further, dreams of creating an album.
Perry was staying on Cooper’s estate at the time, so he was a natural addition. “Joe would come down and start playing, and I went, ‘There’s the band, right there,’ ” Cooper told Rolling Stone. “We’ve got two guitar players that sing, now we need a drummer and a bass player, and then everybody started emerging. We just rocked it.”
What their name means
Cooper was a member of the first iteration of the Hollywood Vampires, a drinking club founded at the upstairs bar of the Roxy in 1972.
“To join the club, one simply had to out drink all of the members,” Cooper said in a press release last year. “I would walk in on a typical night and John Lennon, Harry Nilsson, Keith Moon – who would usually be in a costume like a maid or a chauffeur–Bernie Taupin, Jim Morrison and Mickey Dolenz would be there. The next week might be Bernie Taupin, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison and Mickey Dolenz.”
Eventually, the group was bequeathed a special plaque at the bar according to Rolling Stone, which read “The Lair of the Hollywood Vampires.”
What they play
While the Hollywood Vampires is not strictly a cover group, the band’s album mostly includes tributes to famous tunes of the past, like “My Generation” by The Who and “Manic Depression” by Jimi Hendrix.