American Psycho

The far-Right side of Ted Nugents mind

Ted Nugent. Legendary Detroit rock & roll madman. Guitar God. Amboy Dukes. "Journey to the Center of the Mind." "Baby Please Don't Go." Solo artist. Headbanger supreme. Thirty million albums sold worldwide. "Cat Scratch Fever." "Wango Tango." Sex addict. Right-wing extremist. Militant anti-drug activist. Noted hunting advocate. Conservationist. National spokesman for DARE and MADD. Board member of the NRA. Sheriff's deputy of Lake County, Michigan. Editor/publisher/ author. Frequent guest on the talk-show circuit. Nice guy. Butthead. Great interview.

OC Weekly: What songs are you playing in concert these days?Ted Nugent: Well, basically, Buddy, I've continued the saga for 38 years live and in the face of unsuspecting civilians, playing whatever I fuckin' please. The past couple of years on my tours, I've been playing Temptations, Four Tops, Sam & Dave, and James Brown shit because I am the Black Nuge. And we do the classic shit because America deserves it and because I get a thrill out of playing it. I still crave that shit, man. The reason my music has been so wonderful all these years is because I've always surrounded myself with absolutely dedicated, heart-and-soul motherfuckers. Why are you opening for KISS? Fuck that—they should be opening for you.

Well, believe me, when I get done with 'em, that's exactly what America thinks! The title of this piece should be "Nugent Indecent to the Fat Jews!"

Hey, watch that shit. I'm a fat Jew.

I love fat Jews. I'm working with 'em, aren't I?

I always thought where you had a real attitude, KISS had a marketed attitude.

But it's real marketed attitude. But yeah, I am a street urchin in and out of my wilderness explorations. I'm more experienced, more intelligent, more prepared and more defiant than ever. I'm able to channel my cravings for the sonic outrage that rock & roll is supposed to be while still accurately seeking and representing emotional, human experiences in the songs where I've determined to do so. I mean, "Wang Dang Sweet Poontang" is a love song in the final analysis. I get to strut and dance naked on the human experience nightly with my guitar and still be a good father and a good citizen in my community and an American Independent.

How do you reconcile this whole Rush Limbaugh/ Charlton Heston thing you're noted for with being the ultimate wild man of rock?

Well, in many instances, they do not [approve]. That's the people who fear experiences outside their own world. I am the wildest motherfucker with the most outrageous sensually and sexually explicit guitar licks in the history of electronics. But last week, I did a DARE program. I'm a DARE officer. And the law-enforcement agencies, the representatives of MADD who signed me on as their national spokesman last month, they reviewed, scrutinized, analyzed and screened my reputation for all it is and all it's worth. In the final analysis, when I gave that assemblage of grade schoolers and high schoolers my militant anti-drug message—middle finger, street slang and all—drug counselors, parents, moms and dads who were suspicious of Nugent's anti-drug message in a school assembly came up to me, and some of them were crying. They said they'd never seen a more meaningful anti-poison, anti-bullshit message in all their lives—because I did it like a wild man. Charlton has embraced that. I'm on the board of directors of the NRA. Charlton Heston is the only person who has ever received more votes than I have. And that's because the real shitkickers, they understand Ted Nugent. They understand that when you're facing an extreme situation, you'd better call on a fuckin' extremist! And I'm proud to qualify as an extremist. I play extreme guitar, I eat extreme-quality dead meat, I will use extreme measures to respond to extreme conditions, and anybody who doesn't agree is a fuckin' Grateful Dead fan! I got the Father of the Year award at my kids' school. That was for the DARE program and the fact that I organized reading classes, field trips and nature studies. I bring guns to school—which is supposedly against the law, but I explain to kids that they can be used for positive things or misused. . . .

You support kids bringing guns to schools?!?

Not unless it was in an organized and appropriate way. My point is I do these things that are way, way beyond political correctness, that are embraced by the authorities who are very fearful of crossing that line. So my point is I don't have anything to reconcile. I live the extremes. Yeah, I sing "Wang Dang Sweet Poontang" and admit that I was addicted to pussy, but I got married 11 years ago and have been monogamous ever since. This one girl interviewed me and asked me how I can reconcile saying that I obey the Ten Commandments, and I said, "What do you mean?" She goes, "Well, with all the animals you kill, you don't obey Thou Shalt Not Kill." And I went, "Wait a fuckin' minute! What is this, the Special Olympics of interviews? What the fuck are you talking about? Aren't you a member of a society that has chicken cordon bleu on occasion? Last time I checked, it's dead! Just because you personally didn't knife it, somehow you're not complicit?"

Since we're getting into politics, let me ask you on this Super Tuesday: Who are you endorsing for president?
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