Kid Rock interview: Fighting scalpers, and hanging out with Kathie Lee and Hoda

The singer shares some wisdom in advance of his summer tour.

Kid Rock

Kid Rock

Despite clocking in at a criminal No. 50 on our 50 best summer songs list, Kid Rock's "All Summer Long" is one of the more ubiquitous and universal BBQ tunes to come out in recent years. It's a crowd-pleaser for all ages, so feel no shame in adding it to the grill-side mix. Further, the singer's summer tour visits the NYC area a few times this year, including PNC Bank Arts Center on June 29. If the antics on his annual cruise (as reported by GQ) are any indication, it should be a fairly memorable, debaucherous time.

One of the more interesting aspects of the trek (besides the chance to hear "Bawitdaba" in the flesh) is the pricing scheme. Tickets are set at $20 (plus fees) to make the shows a bit more affordable for working-class folk, and front-row spots, often the mostly highly scalped, aren't for sale at all—instead, they'll be reserved for die-hard fans. As he recently told NPR, "I'm tired of seeing the old rich guy in the front row with the hot girlfriend. And the hot girlfriend, you know, with her boobs hanging out, with her beer in the air, just screaming the whole time. The old rich guy is standing there like he could[n't] care less. It's a very common theme at Kid Rock concerts." You have to admire the candor.

We caught up with Kid Rock a few days before the start of his summer tour at a Jim Beam–sponsored Yankee Stadium visit. (Full disclosure: A bottle of Kid Rock–signed Jim Beam is now in my possession.) Mr. Rock was forthcoming about his views on touring, Twitter and daytime talk shows. And yes, hanging out with Kathie Lee and Hoda is as awesome as it seems.

On being away from home while on the road: "I go home all the time. I'm usually not gone more than two days. When you start getting old, it's tough."

Worst summer job: "Cutting lawns, pulling weeds, landscaping shit."

On going out in public: "Fuckin' camera phones, that's basically the bottom line. I'll shoot the shit with anybody anytime, but I just don't want to fucking take pictures all night, I don't give a fuck who you are. Outside of that, I'm cool." 

On NYC: "You're fascinated when you come as a kid, but when you get to this age, you're like…really? I love the city when I'm in there hanging out, but getting around—nah. These days it seems to be lawsuits or TMZ. 'What will happen if i go out tonight?'"

What he does while in NYC: "I usually just hang with friends who are from here. [LES bar] Max Fish is pretty cool. But give me a bar filled with drinks and a good atmosphere and I don't give a shit where it is."

On Twitter-obsessed celebs: "There's a whole lot of people that enjoy it, that's my theory. I get it, but I think I missed the window. I'm in the age gap. I chime in on enough shit and speak out of turn enough. I don't need any more platforms to do that on. My goal is to get quieter as I get older."

On his annual party cruise, the 2014 edition of which just got announced: "It seems like they keep getting closer together. I'm going to have to investigate."

On NYS's paperless ticketing laws: "[New York] does dumb shit like that. I'm confused around these parts. No soda, guns, smoking. I have nightmares about this place, that the devil hangs out here."

On his tour's $20 tickets: "If rich people wanna buy from scalpers, fine. But what happens is you get these hardcore fans buying them. I guess it's not my responsibility but I do what I can."

On hanging out with Kathie Lee and Hoda: "That's a blast. Drinking wine with the girls. The View: It seems that would be treacherous for me; five women, early in the morning, all different ethnic backgrounds just coming at you. Kathie Lee and Hoda are drinking wine, like, 'What are you up to?' That show was actually a lot of fun."

And Howard Stern: "He's a lot of fun too. When I was young doing dumb shit, wondering if he found out about it, that was a little nerve-racking, but not now."

Favorite summertime tune: "Willin'" by Little Feat

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Editor: Marley Lynch (@marleyasinbob)