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Catching up with Ted Nugent

Ted Nugent and his band of Subhuman Mongrels are hitting the road this summer and will be supporting their first album since 2007's Love Grenade. The new record, titled Shut Up & Jam, will be available in July. Ahead of their July 24th visit to Columbus' legendary Newport Music Hall, Nugent took some time away from the tree stand to answer a few of my questions in fitting Motor City Madman fashion.

Ted Nugent live
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Me: I am a huge fan of your last album, Love Grenade. I don’t think there is a bad song on that record. The reviews I’ve read for the new album, Shut Up & Jam, make it sound like quite a change from Love Grenade. What are your thoughts on what separates it from the previous record?

Ted Nugent: SHUTUP&JAM! is surely one of my best albums ever, but like Love Grenade, Craveman and all of them, SHUTUP&JAM! represents my musical vision and dreams right here right now in a powerfully positive state of mind. When you are surrounded by such amazing musical geniuses as I am, the music has a life of its own and we are extremely proud of the new music.

Me: I’ll admit, when I first saw you using the term Shut Up & Jam on Facebook, my first impression was that Ted Nugent had finally given into the haters that have been calling for him to “shut up and jam”. I just can’t believe that though. I believe I’ve seen you eight times since 2005 and I love the whole show. The music. The rants. The passion. That’s not going away right?

Ted Nugent: I don't take directions, I give directions, and SHUTUP&JAM! is an exaltation from my American Dream mountaintop that proclaims loud and proud that many of us don't really give a good rat's ass what your politics may or may not be, there comes a time when we celebrate the ultimate communication of music, and my music is so damn positive, uppity, defiant and ultraFUN, that it is very important today to SHUTUP&JAM! as often as possible. As long as we continue to fight in between the jamming with all we have to save America from the current suicidal deathwish of the corrupt, criminal punks intentionally destroying the last best place. I not only shout out SHUTUP&JAM! I also shout out take your fundamental transformation and shove it up your America hating ass.

Me: I heard "Never Stop Believing" today, and that right there is my kinda shit. That song literally sounds like the Fourth of July! I can’t wait to hear the rest of the record. What was your motivation behind that song?

Ted Nugent: I put my heart and soul everyday into showing my appreciation for the incredible sacrifices of the US Military heroes by using my freedom and rights, that they provided and safeguarded at such sacrifice, to the best of my ability fighting the enemies here at home. When you spend as much time as I do with wounded warriors and their families, and terminally ill kids and their families, you are humbled and powerfully inspired by their courage and positive energy to live your life to the absolute best you can everyday. It will wake you up really fast to never stop believing.

Me: Let’s shift gears for a second. I feel like there might be a real movement happening out there. I feel like the folks might finally be wising up to the ongoing destruction of our country. What do you think?

Ted Nugent: The self-inflicted scourge of apathy is indeed finally showing signs of dissipating, and it is encouraging to see a reawakening of "we the people's" most important responsibility to monitor and direct our elected employees in government. The runaway abuse of power, corruption and outright criminality of this Obama regime is beyond the pale, and thank God more Americans are waking up to it. Visit my facebook and website to see real Americans doing their job.

Me: I see a lot of your haters showing their anti-hunting and anti-Constitution bullshit online to you often. What is wrong with these people?

Ted Nugent: From apathy comes a soulless disconnect where feelgood ignorance is protected from all information challenging that denial. Ignorance is indeed bliss, but it is also dangerous and embarrassing.

Me: Six of the eight times that I’ve seen you were in Columbus, at The LC Pavilion. This year you’re playing The Newport Music Hall. The Newport is a smaller venue, but is rich in rock n’ roll history, as many of your R&B&R&R brothers have also played there over the years. Do you have any fond memories from your earlier years playing there?

Ted Nugent: My memory bank has overflowed out of control forever. As I approach my 6500th outrageous high energy rockout, I'm surprised my smile hasn't killed me yet. I have lived an indescribable joyful, adventurous, musical dream life and it just gets better every year. Godbless the real soulmusic lovers out there that have celebrated my amazing music all these years. Thank you all so very much for the intoxicating memories.

As previously stated, The Nuge and his band will be at The Newport Music Hall on Thursday July 24th. Don't miss your chance to catch this rock legend on the road this summer as he celebrates his 6,500th live concert and his 14th studio album. Even at 65 years old he puts on one of the loudest and most ferocious shows that you will see, more so than musicians half his age. Get your ticket now, here, and leave work early that Thursday night so you can join the R&B&R&R celebration and Shut Up & Jam!

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