Thursday, December 23, 2010

Kid Rock talks about ‘Born Free’

Kid Rock sat down with CMT to talk about his latest release, “Born Free.

CMT: On Born Free, you worked with producer Rick Rubin. What do we hear different as a result of his involvement?

Kid Rock:
Rick's been a good friend for a long time, I'd say 10 years plus. His greatest talent is really bringing out who you are and where you're heading musically -- and really keeping you true to that. He's always said to me, "I think you've positioned yourself to make the next really great Americana, rock 'n' roll record with all your tinges of blues and country music, hip-hop, rock 'n' roll." I just gave him the wheel. And I left my comfort zone of my home studio in Detroit, which I've been pretty successful doing what I do best there, and let him have the wheel and rode shotgun. Doesn't mean I wasn't yellin' out once in a while -- "Hey, turn left here!" ...

It was a great experience. He brought in a lot of great players and really made me focus on the songs. He raised all the keys and made me sing in a lot higher keys than I'm used to. He put me to work, which I'm not scared to work. I've worked very hard to get where I'm at, but he even took it to another level of making me really work hard and focus on the songs, singing and just having great players in the studio. We knocked that record out after we had spent so much time writing it. We got all the great players in the studio together. We recorded it in two weeks. It was done. No quick tracks, no tomfoolery. It was just honest people sitting around that have practiced the craft for a long time. ... We made a record like the way it's supposed to be made, I think.

CMT: In that regard, for lack of a better description, it's maybe a more organic record.

Kid Rock:

CMT: Do you think it will change people's perception of you a little bit because it is more of a move in that direction?

Kid Rock:
I'm not sure if there's any way anybody could really ... I mean, to have a perception of me, I guess, is to make whatever perception you want because there's enough information out there to support any perception you want to make of me. This record is just another move. ... I've always made music from the heart, and that's what I do. And at the end of the day, whether it works or not, I can say I tried my best. That's really me doing that, and I'm not just doing something for the sake of trying to get it played on the radio or for a format or to please a certain group of people or whatever. It's just what I think is good music from the heart, and that's all I got.

CMT: We've seen you in Nashville a lot. When did you first come to town? And how have your relationships here changed how you see yourself or the kind of music you're putting out? Has it affected you in that way at all?

Kid Rock:
Yeah, sure. I started coming to Nashville years ago, just touring. I've always had a love of country music. ... One thing I found about Nashville is, you know, Music City. It has some of the greatest players, songwriters -- just musical people -- in the world. And my dad always told me, "If you want to be a painter, don't hang out with a carpenter." So I started spending some time down here around the best painters that I knew of. They kind of opened up their world to me and let me be a part of it. So I'm very happy to be down here, and I hope I make a pretty good guest.

CMT: Do you feel this record has more soul because of the way you cut it?

Kid Rock:
Yeah, the record definitely has more soul because of the way we cut it because not only have I learned a lot in the 20-plus years that I've been making music, it's been a natural progression of trying to fine-tune my craft -- what I'm good at, what I want to do, what comes from my heart, which is music and write songs. So I think it's right where I'm supposed to be. It's just ... you know, getting better and working hard. I can definitely say I haven't got lazy.

Check out the full interview at CMT here.

Kid Rock Kid Rock

Kid Rock – Born Free (2010)