When the members of the original Alice Cooper group parted ways in 1974, Wagner officially teamed up with Alice Cooper and became his principal co-writer, lead guitarist and band director. Together they wrote their first concept album, Welcome to My Nightmare. Produced by Bob Ezrin, the album was released in 1975. The Nightmare Tour became the largest and longest touring rock show of the time. The live show also featured the dueling lead guitars of Wagner and Hunter in a guitar battle captured in the film of the same name. The film became a TV special and was later released on home video in 1976. The world tour covered more than 120 cities over an eighteen-month period. Wagner continued to co-write songs and play lead guitar on additional Cooper albums, including: Goes to Hell (1976), The Alice Cooper Show (1977), Lace and Whiskey (1977), From the Inside (1978; written by the team of Alice Cooper, Dick Wagner and Bernie Taupin), Zipper Catches Skin (1982), DaDa (1983) and Hey Stoopid (1991) among others.
One of the best-known songs written by Wagner is "Only Women Bleed". Written during Wagner's days with the Frost and titled "Movin' On", Wagner was unhappy with his lyrics and did not release it. After starting his collaboration with Alice Cooper, Wagner played the song for him. Alice had a title for a song he had been wanting to write. While keeping the main riff and vocal melodies, Cooper and Wagner penned new lyrics and recorded it for Cooper's debut solo studio album Welcome to My Nightmare. The song delivered a message against domestic violence. Since its initial release in 1975 "Only Women Bleed" has been covered by more than 30 artists, including Tina Turner, Etta James, Guns N' Roses, Lita Ford, Carmen McRae and Tori Amos.
One of the songs Wagner was most proud of is "Remember the Child", written to address the issue of child abuse. Written from the point of view of a child, the lyrics and song melody deliver a powerful and poignant message to adults that a child will forever remember the love or abuse of their childhood. New York Times best selling author John Bradshaw selected "Remember the Child" as the theme song for his award-winning PBS television special, "Homecoming: Reclaiming and Healing Your Inner Child". Bradshaw invited Wagner to join him on his nationwide tour to perform the song as a cathartic and healing piece of music to the thousands who attended Bradshaw's lectures and seminars. Embraced by psychiatrists and psychologists in their practices, the song has been used as a tool to evoke emotion from patients who are unable to express feelings. In 1996, Wagner was invited by Leo Najar, conductor of the Saginaw Bay Symphony Orchestra to perform a two and a half hour concert of his songs with the symphony. Wagner entitled the concert, The Remember the Child Concert, raising funds for child abuse agencies in central Michigan through his Remember the Child Foundation.
Wagner moved to Phoenix, Arizona, in 2005 where he was writing a new studio album with Alan Gordon (Happy Together, Celebrate). In 2007 he wrote songs for the artist Wednesday for her debut studio album Torch Rock, released on his independent record label Desert Dreams Records. Because of the efforts of his career strategist and publicist Al Gomes, Wednesday's studio album, produced by Wagner, was placed on the official ballot by The Recording Academy for the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Three years later, Gomes assisted in getting Wagner and songwriting partner Alice Cooper's song "Something to Remember Me By" (from 2011's Welcome 2 My Nightmare) placed on the 55th Annual Grammy Awards ballot for Best Rock Performance and Best Rock Song.
In 2007, Wagner suffered a massive heart attack and stroke. After arriving DOA at a Scottsdale hospital, he spent two weeks in a coma, awakening with a paralyzed left arm. While recovering from his heart attack, Wagner continued to write songs and began writing his memoirs, which ultimately became his book, Not Only Women Bleed (2011).
Wagner released a new solo studio album in October 2009, titled Full Meltdown on Desert Dreams Records. It features 15 lost and newly discovered songs recorded by Wagner between 1979 and 1995. He also produced the band Warsaw Pact and the independent artist Brandon Bullard with releases from both in early 2010. Wagner scored with Alice Cooper and the British funk rock band the Velvet Hearts the soundtrack to the Indie horror film Silas Gore, A Film Trilogy (2010). Similar to his original work on the debut Alice Cooper solo studio album Welcome to My Nightmare, Wagner also contributed lead guitar to the final track, "The Underture", from the album Welcome 2 My Nightmare (2011). It represents instrumental versions of several songs from each album.
Blue Coupe's members include Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Dennis Dunaway, bassist of the legendary Alice Cooper group, with multi-instrumentalist, Joe Bouchard who founded Blue Öyster Cult with his brother Albert Bouchard, a master of the drums. These originals were the heartbeat of some of the best-known songs in the history of rock. Note for note, their full-throttle jams hit you over the head and grab you by the heart in their concerts. 2b1af7f3a8