Ted shoots from lip
September 1, 2007
Ted Nugent is sticking to his guns.
The Detroit-born rocker and Second Amendment advocate has faced intense criticism for a recent onstage tirade that found him brandishing a pair of machine guns while lambasting assorted national politicians. But Nugent, in town for a show tonight at DTE Energy Music Theatre, isn't backing down.
"There's this gross misconception that I threatened someone's life," he tells Free Press music writer Brian McCollum . "My two hours-plus of rock 'n' roll onstage is uninhibited, spontaneous fun. ... It was an over-the-top, hyper stage statement that people who want to disarm Americans might want to ride one of these (guns) into the sunset -- of their career."
This week's stint in the political spotlight is nothing new for the 58-year-old Republican, who says he hasn't ruled out a 2010 run to displace Jennifer Granholm as Michigan governor.
"I think Granholm has been negative for Michigan," he says. "I'd like to run for two reasons: One, I think I could bring a positive upgrade to this state. And 1-A, would that not be the biggest riot of a campaign in the history of campaigns?"
For now, Nugent's attention is on tonight's homecoming performance, where he'll be joined for a handful of songs by Derek St. Holmes, vocalist on such '70s hits as "Stranglehold" and "Cat Scratch Fever."
While it's that old stuff that still lures audiences, Nugent says, it's a more recent song -- a tribute to the late bow-hunting icon Fred Bear -- that is now his show's emotional peak.
"When I kneel down and sing some of the choruses, I can see the old... white-bearded ... wearing plaid jackets -- with the tears just flowing out of their eyes," he says. "It is out of body."