One thing that probably all sides of a divided nation can agree on: Ted Nugent, for better or worse, is almost certainly never getting into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. And the right-wing rocker says he’s fine with that , claiming he’d just as soon not be part of a hall that includes members he considers unworthy — a list that stretches to include Madonna, Patti Smith, Grandmaster Flash and ABBA.
Who does Nugent think should be in the Hall of Fame, besides himself, if the judges were a little more discriminatory? Styx and Triumph, of course.
The thought of a pioneering hip-hop artist in the Rock Hall of Fame so upsets him that, in the interview published on KNAC.com, Nugent says it’s tantamount to urinating on the graves of rock’s original pioneers. “What a middle finger to the ‘real’ heroes of rock ‘n’ roll and rhythm and blues to put in those other people,” he says. “Grandmaster Flash? Really? Why don’t we go down to Chuck Berry’s grave and piss on it?”
Insisting it’s nothing personal, Nugent says,”I’m not angry that I’m not in there because I’m having so much fun that it’s stupid.” But, he asks, “Why isn’t a band like Triumph in there, but Grandmaster Flash is? That’s just dishonest! Why are Patti Smith, ABBA and Madonna in the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, but not Styx? Are you kidding me?! You can only explain that is that the people who made those decisions are just plain rotten people! The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame should genuflect to Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters (and) the Funk Brothers… How dare you put Grandmaster Flash, ABBA and Madonna in that?”
Nugent’s disdain for Democratic politicians and entertainers who fail to take as rightward a stance as his inevitably comes up throughout the interview.
He cites KIss’ Gene Simmons as someone ‘I love immensely as one of the true great musical entrepreneurs of all time. … but also my critical thinking responsibility must address that he dropped his independent thinking intellectual ball when he sided with the illegal, unfounded, tyrannical decrees from punks like Fauci and Joe Biden regarding masks and ‘experimental’ shots, when he has always stood up for his mother who survived Auschwitz…. He defied the truth, logic and commons sense of the Nuremberg Trials…. So Gene, I love you’ I can help you because you had a ‘hiccup.’”
Kyle Rittenhouse? A hero, naturally. “Yes, I am sending Kyle Rittenhouse a lifetime supply of proper ammunition. It turns out according to Tucker Carlson, Kyle and his mother are big fans of mine. Kyle, his mother and possibly Tucker are hoping to meet up with me in my ranch in Texas for a little deer-hunting campfire and maybe a little lesson on tactical upgrade, so when evil is attacking you can neutralize it, hopefully forever.”
Nugent also addresses some of the stories that have circulated about him over the years, like the claim that he was a hypocritical draft dodger. He traces that back to an interview with High Times magazine in which he contends that he fooled the “dirtbag” reporter by bringing up details about escaping the draft that were actually true of his drummer at the time, K.J. Knight. “Here’s the big question — how stupid, soulless and dishonest would one have to be to take information from a publication titled High Tims to condemn someone? One of the worst crimes of mankind is to falsely accuse. It’s a false accusation.”
He also defended accepting a Purple Heart from a veteran, despite not having served in the military. “When a U.S Marine sniper forces you to close your hand around a Purple Heart that they earned by telling me that they believe that I’ve earned it by fighting for the freedom that their buddies died for, I can only humbly bow my head and accept the gesture. I continue to serve for America unofficially every day of my life.”
Nugent has a new album coming out in February, “Detroit Muscle,” via Pavement Music. He claims he sent a copy of the pro-gun single “Come and Get It” “to Beto O’Rourke and Joe Biden with a note if they want to take away our First and Second Amendments that they make a knock at my door first. I’d love to help inform their thought process. That’s a ‘cocky’ statement but you can go ahead and quote me on that… Thank God for the great people at Pavement Music in 2021. They heard the song and said, ‘Whoa. That’s the real McCoy! Nugent is on fire and the band is on fire.’”