Kid Rock is possibly the most misunderstood performer in mainstream music.
Casual listeners write him off as a rap-rocker who burst onto the scene in the late 1990s. Turned off by that Limp Bizkit-era introduction, they ignore Rock’s transformation over the next decade into modern-day Bob Seger.
Country purists begrudge the fact that Kid Rock shows up on their awards shows and keeps enticing people like Martina McBride to sing on his albums.
But fans who have paid attention — the sort who filled a sold-out charity concert at the 999-capacity Knitting Factory in Boise — well, they understand the Kid.
And if you somehow didn’t grasp what makes Kid Rock special before he took the stage Sunday night, you definitely got it when you walked out 100 minutes later.
His most obvious gift??Compassion. Making one of the final stops on a 15-city “Care” tour, Rock spoke candidly about why he was playing in smaller venues, reconnecting with fans and raising nearly $400,000 for charities in the participating markets. (Here in Boise:?Idaho Foodbank, Make-a-Wish Foundation and Keep Kids Warm will receive money.)
“It feels really good,” Rock, 40, told the audience. “You know what I’m talkin’ about?”
Was that a lump in Kid Rock’s throat??It sure seemed like it.
The rest of the night was pure hands-in-the-air bliss. Critics complain about the classic-rock riffs Kid Rock regularly splices into his songs. But their familiarity helps the music resonate with fans — and with Rock himself. In a sense, he’s a tribute act, a Midwestern blue-collar musician nodding reverently to those who came before him.
Read the full review at Voices.IdahoStatesMan.com.
Photo Credit: Michael Deeds