I’m gonna start out this post with a retort concerning Wes’ Kid Rock bashing post a week ago, “The Real Reason for Detroit’s Recession”. The premise of Wes’ article illuminated us to the fact that Detroit has created numerous great artists, and lambasts the decision to allow Kid Rock to perform the half-time show for the Thanksgiving game. Wes even goes on to say calling Kid Rock the “Son of Detroit” is “sad”.
I disagree. Who better to call the “Son of Detroit” than someone who has worked as hard as anyone in the music industry the past 20+ years. Detroit has always been known as a blue collar city, and Kid Rock is about as blue collar as you get in the music industry. Transitioning from dj to rapper to rap/rocker to rocker to country rocker to blues rocker is more than impressive, and shows a lot of heart. This heart has made up for an admitted lack of pure talent. Kid Rock doesn’t play the guitar like Jack White, have the serenading ability of Stevie Wonder, or the endless wit of Eminem. But, Detroit has every reason to be proud.
How about raising a son as a single father since the age of 22, and being very outspoken about his commitment to the raising of his son throughout his career? I would say its probably something Detroit should be proud of. I would say traveling all over the world to perform for U.S. troops also deserves a tip of the cap. Beyond all this, some may point to him being a bad guy because of a little drinking and fighting and a sex tape. Well, there is a lot of drinking going on in the music biz, a lot of sex (thankfully not all taped), and who wouldn’t want to punch Tommy Lee.
So, Kid Rock is hardworking and a pretty decent guy by my estimation, and I also get a kick out of a lot of his music. Some people refuse to be entertained by music that lacks “the utmost artistic integrity”. I’m not one of those people. Just as there is a place for schlocky action and horror movies in the film industry, there is a place for Kid Rock in the music industry. He may lack any semblance of delicacy in his music and delivery, but damn it if I don’t love to crank up “Cowboy”, or any number of his other hits from time to time. There is an earnest desire to entertain and please from Kid Rock, and for that I’ll give some due respect even though he may never release classic record.
I was planning on just writing a quick retort to Wes, but it ran a little long, so I’m not going to give a full write-up on his new album, Rebel Soul. I will write a quick bit though. On Rebel Soul, Kid Rock spans everything from country, rock, blues, and even a little soul and hip-hop. He is basically doing whatever the hell he wants at this point in his career, and I respect that a lot. Listening to Rebel Soul is like listening to “mix” station on the radio, with nothing too outlandish (except maybe “Cucci Galore”, which is all at once strange, confusing, and exhilarating). In sum, I surprisingly enjoyed the majority of the album. Kid Rock is best when doing his bluesy honky-tonk country thing, but there are maybe only a few out of the fourteen songs that should have clearly been cut. I weirdly found myself listening to the album in the car quite a bit the past week, and it is worth a spin.
Can’t Miss: “Cucci Galore”, “Midnight Ferry”, “Mr. Rock n’ Roll”
Can’t Hit: “Cocaine & Gin”, “Let’s Ride”