NUGE!! How else would one expect Ted Nugent to answer the phone? Nugent says hello with piss and vinegar in his voice. “I’m doing so good it’s stupid and willing to share it with you. I hear you deserve me this morning,” he says jokingly. Taking a break from his morning hunt, Nugent gladly tells about his life. “It’s so good it’s insane. In fact, right now, I’m literally cleaning the blood off my buck knife. I shot at the most magnificent White Tail Texas Stag this morning. It’s the biggest buck I’ve killed on the ranch and I’m telling ya, it’s the biggest I’ve ever killed in my life. Though big bucks are not why I hunt, it certainly emphasizes the spirit of the encounter, so it’s a real celebratory time at the Nugent Ranch right now.” Nugent has so many interviews and media requests that he breaks each day to handle them. “During hunting season, I allot from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. in between hunting in the morning and the afternoon.”
Theodore Anthony Nugent, Nuge, Uncle Ted or as most people know him, The Motor City Mad Man–he will answer to any and all. 64-year-old Nugent was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan and is hailed as one of the most controversial rockers to date. He began his career as the lead guitarist of The Amboy Dukes and later branched out into a solo career. With hit songs spanning the decades from the 60’s and 70’s and over 40 million records sold to date, Nugent’s songs remain popular and are still played all around the world. “People are still buying my records because everybody needs Stranglehold and Dog Eat Dog in their life,” he laughs.
Tooth Fang & Claw was Nugent’s first album in 1974, however, Ted Nugent (self titled 1975) brought Stranglehold, Free-For-All (1976) sported Free-For-All and Turn It Up, then the infamous Cat Scratch Fever that sparked the title song Cat Scratch Fever and Wang Dang Sweet Poontang. Nuge was off like a hunter ready for the kill. Not only has he been killing audiences for years, Nugent is an avid hunter and a strong advocate on the right to bear arms and currently serves on the Board of Directors of the National Rifle Association (NRA)
He has had run-in after run-in with animal rights activists, and explains how hunting animals for food is a renewable resource. “Nature heals and hunting for food is exactly how God intended for man to feed himself,” he exclaims. “I am extremely let down by what media has covered on me and I know you will convey what I’m about to tell you correctly. When I am in my tree, or I am hunting water fowl or small game with my dog, there is no negative. There is no gun running Attorney General; there is no lying scam artist President; there is no corrupt power abusing government; there is no AIDS, no Taliban, and no cancer. There’s just total joy of seeing those deer in that swamp and watching those water fowl fly overhead or have song birds land right next to my face and groom themselves because they don’t know what I am because I’m in camouflage. The power of healing that nature provides is where my energy and where my spirit comes from. That is why my music is so DAMN intense!”
So controversial is he, Nugent and his family have received numerous death threats from animal rights extremists and states that there are reports on file across America. What many fail to know about this controversial political hunter/musician is his love of life, love of freedom and love of those that support our country. “People are angry with me because I kill to eat. They don’t know of all the meat I donate to homeless shelters and soup kitchens across the country. They don’t know I send tons of venison jerky to the heroes of the U.S. military every year for Christmas. Do you realize the connection? I’m a part of God’s renewable resource and it’s amazing to be a part of that. I’m sending part of God’s renewable protein to a military hero who is serving my country and is willing to die for me. There is no greater gift of food to a military hero over in the hell zone of the world than meat from Ted Nugent’s deer. Do you see what a sad soullessness some our fellow Americans possess for wanting to kill me and my family for eating venison or water fowl? This is important to me and that’s why I stand up like and I do and I don’t back down. I continue to promote conservation and I continue to send venison that’s a renewable precious and pure natural protein to hungry Americans and the men and women in the military. If people want to kill me for doing that, well then they get my itinerary from my website and they can meet me any time any place and I want YOU to film it,” Nugent exclaims.
It’s a hard pill to swallow; on one hand you have his politics, which most people hate and then you have the animal rights activists going bonkers over his God-given right to shoot Bambi and yet no one can deny that deep down inside, they all have a ‘Uncle Ted’ somewhere in their family tree full of nuts. And there’s nothing wrong with that; but don’t hate the man because you couldn’t pull off his life. You may not like his stance on the government or his thoughts on the right to bare arms but you can’t deny the man knows how to rock n’ roll; can he get a HELL YEAH?! Nugent, Derek St. Holmes (vocals and guitar), Greg Smith/Rainbow on bass and Mick Brown/Dokken on drums worked together to produce an amazing new album release. Ultralive Ballisticrock was released October 18th in Europe and October 22nd in America. The 2 CD +DVD Deluxe Edition Digipak, DVD/Blu-Ray and available through digital download was released on Frontiers Records and has well been worth the wait. Nugent states “Why not? We are so proud of our concerts each and every night. We are like drunken maniacs that just got stoned on the music. And we do; we are high on the music and the performance. We know it’s wonderful and we know the audience goes berserk every night and we know that people just love the attitude, the spirit, the authority and the intensity of our music.”
Nugent and his band was contacted in 2011 by AXS TV to record a live show and were ecstatic and happy to do it. “I told them it didn’t matter when or where because every night was a monster show and amazing concert so bring your crew! I then told my manager, Doug Banker, you’re damn right we should do a show for AXS TV, but this is what I want. I want to own the tapes; I want to own it all. I’ll give them an exclusive two years and then I want to release it globally because I know the band is going to kill it. I know what kind of definitive American rock and roll statement it will make. We didn’t change a thing or prepare anything special. No stage changes or set list changes. We just went on stage that night in Pennsylvania and rocked our balls off. Here it is, and I am so proud of it. It was one night, one stage, one shot, one concert!”
Ultralive Ballisticrock showcases the entire show from the band walking onto the stage in Penn’s Peak, Pennsylvania on August 14, 2011. Recorded by seven cameras in 5.1 audio mix during the “I Still Believe Tour”, the set list includes Nugent’s greats from the span of almost four decades. CD #1: Free For All, Stormtroopin; Wango Tango, Just What The Doctor Ordered, Wang Dang Sweet Poontang, Need You Bad, Turn It Up, Raw Dogs & War Hogs, and Dog Eat Dog. CD #2: Hey Baby, Fred Bear, I Still Believe, Motorcity Madhouse, Cat Scratch Fever, Stranglehold, and Great White Buffalo. The DVD/BluRay offers: Free For All, Stormtroopin, Wango Tango, Just What The Doctor Ordered, Wang Dang Sweet Poontang, Need You Bad; Turn It Up; Raw Dogs & War Hogs; Dog Eat Dog; Hey Baby; Fred Bear; I Still Believe; Motorcity Madhouse; Cat Scratch Fever; Stranglehold; Great White Buffalo. Also included in the deluxe edition DVD (Blu-Ray) bonus features Spirit of the Wild and The Making of Ultralive Ballisticrock. Nugent explains he loves the here and now and the show of the night. He scrutinizes himself and the making of the DVD too much and didn’t want to watch it after he approved it. “ I know what kind of music we make and I know how good we are. I just don’t want to go back and say dammit, why wasn’t the light and camera on Derek during that really neat moment or why wasn’t it on Mick during that incredible drum solo? But I think I’m too critical and again I think we should take it for what it is. I’m proud of what we did capture and seeing it live and in the moment proves what we do musically. I will just sit back , relax and say This is a son of a bitch, I love this Ultralive Ballisticrock, have a good day!”
Making music and touring 65 days a year, Nugent then devotes the remaining 300 days for hunting and spending time with family and friends. His Outdoor Channel show of 12 years now, Spirit of the Wild keeps other avid hunters coming back for more as well as keeping the animal rights activists threatening him. Politically he is a strong and vocal supporter of the U.S. Republican Party and other conservative causes. “I stand up for gun rights, hunter rights and for what I believe in. Nugent expressed an interest in running for the Presidency as a Republican in an earlier interview with The Washington Post. “You want to hear more? Come walk the SHOT Show [trade show for the shooting, hunting and firearms industry] with me. I have 64 years worth to say,” he laughs; we laughed too and we’ve accepted. Sometime in early 2014, Screamer Magazine will walk the SHOT show with Ted Nugent. We’re interested to hear more of what “Uncle Ted” thinks, if he’ll really run for President, and we ask you to join us in the December and January issues as we bring you more on the adventures of the “Motor City Madman.”
For more info visit: