You guys can pay attention to the critics if you want to, or you can read my review which is far more important, far more personal, and far more meaningful to both fans of Kid Rock, and fans of music in general. I have been around music for a long time, but more then that, I have been a fan of Kid Rock since he started this career. I have never worshipped the dude like some, I have never gave anything but my honest opinion on his work. No matter if I liked what he did, or did not like it, I knew I could always count on going to a show where I would get my monies worth, and ultimately I can say I witnessed this story from the very beginning. I have watched Robert Ritchie transform himself into one of the biggest Rock Stars of my lifetime, and being from Michigan, being a friend of many within the camp, I can walk around daily saying I am proud of what this man, this band, and all involved have accomplished. I have taken a few days, a few listens to let it all sink in, and I am going to share my thoughts on Born Free, Right here, Right now.. Feel Free to copy and paste, send to anyone you want, because this piece will be more informing then the reviews made by all the major newspapers and magazines.
Born Free, By Kid Rock
I have been a Kid Rock fan for quite a while now. It started when I was a beer swilling, smart ass teen who listened to rap music, sagged my pants, and told everyone and anyone to FUCK OFF. I purchased an album called Grits Sandwiches for Breakfast. The humor, wit, and talents of Kid Rock really played a role in the way I lived my life. I could go on and on describing the parallels between Kid Rock's music and my life, but its a waste of time, if you get it, you get it, if you do not, its probably because you have an education level that of a 3rd grader. I am now in my early 30's, or is it mid 30's? Well, either way, I have grown to be an adult mosyt of the time, and with that I have opened my mind, expanded my horizons, and have started listening to music more then just for a beat, or a hook. Lyrics have more of an effect on me when I listen to music then anything else, and there is no doubt the subject matter, the lyrics, and effect of Kid Rock's music has grown to proportions I am not sure the man himself could have ever imagined. I have watched it from afar, I have seen it up close, I have been a part of this magical journey in one way or another, and honestly feel as if I myself have grown along with it.
I have seen people say this album is soft, I have heard people complain that Kid Rock has lost his edge, I have even seen some people say there are done with Kid Rock and his music after this album. To me, these people so not understand music, they do not listen to music, they are not open minded, and their credability is lacking. The words and/or message being conveyed on this album is far different then anything Bob has ever done, at the same time, he is taking some responsibility on his shoulders that many artists today are afraid to do. It would be easy for Bob to jump into a studio and yell FUCK OFF, BITCH THIS, BITCH THAT, SHIT, ASS, CUNT, WHORE, COCAINE, WEED, LIQUOR, throw his middle fingers in the air, and sell a million records. What alot of people fail to realize is that this journey started way before Devil Without a Cause, and this man has listened to critics call him everything from a rock/rap wigger, to a hack, to even a theif when reviewing All Summer Long. Whether you are an artist, or you are just a regular joe, the last thing you want in life is to not get credit for your work, your abilities, especially if its something you have worked to perfection for years upon years. Kid Rock has surrounded himself with one of the best live bands in the world, he has also brought in some of the finest studio musicians in the world, and has collaborated with some of the most talented song writers, and what it has done has turned him into a well rounded musical genius.
Born Free, from beginning to end is filled with thought provoking lyrics, Lyrics that reflect on life, reflect on his career, and reflect on the state of the Country at a time when people are confused, scared, and worried about the future of their lives, their childrens lives, and the Country in general. If you put this CD in, and listen to the words, you undoubtedly can forget about your own worries, and be entertained, find an escape, find hope. Kid Rock has done just that on every album he has released, only difference being, the escape ultimately was the PARTY. This album relfects the times, but also reflects upon Kid Rock as a grown ass man. He is letting you know, through the words he sings that he has some of the same worries that we have, that even though he is a ROCK STAR, he is also a family man that has to reflect on life sometimes, look around, and realize people are struggling, and while he can't offer answers to everyone, he can share in our worries.
Kid Rock is not 25 anymore, The answer is not to down 20 shots, get some Kid Rock Tickets, and forget whats going on until tomorrow. This album is deep, it is lyrically meaningful, and it is showing a side of Kid Rock that many who have not been fans have never seen. I could sit here and question some of the production, I could question some of the pitches in which some of the songs are sung, but who am I to question a Rock Star for experimenting, or a producer? Instead, I listen to the words being shared, and I feel proud of Kid Rock for saying things that most artists avoid, doing something that most artists will never do. He has gone out of his way to prove his abilities, instead of taking the easy route and making another album of the same material that was successful before.
I can not wait to hear most of these songs live. I personally am excited to see what TBT and Bob do to thses songs to spice them up for the live shows. I think the Rick Rubin effect that may bother me on a song or two will disappear, and Marlon, Jimmie, Jason, Aaron, Freddie, Stef, Larry, Dave, and the girls will take this music up a few notches and give everyone the true rock n roll feel that maybe some feel is missing. This album shows passion, it shows an artist who is not afraid to progress, it shows writing that is beyond the scope of some pop music bullshit, and it gives everyone a little peak into who and what Kid Rock is all about, after the party ends.
Listen to the album, Listen to the words, listen to the message. This is one of the most well written albums I have heard in some time. I am right around the same age as Bob, I have lived my life in and around some of the same things Bob has, and I have seen alot of the same things happen in and around the city we love....
Bob is the biggest Rock Star of our generation,