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Ted Nugent

Throughout his lengthy career, guitar wildman Ted Nugent has reveled in the controversy and criticism that always seems to follow in his path. While there's no denying his exceptional talent on the six-string, his knack for penning arena rock anthems, or his standing as one of rock's top live acts, it's his non-musical endeavors that have caused the most condemnation from his detractors (his pro-right wing beliefs, pro-gun advocacy, appreciation of hunting animals, etc.). But by the same token, Nugent is a family man and one of the few hard rockers who has admirably stuck by his lifelong anti-drugs and -drink stance throughout his career.

Born on December 13, 1948, in Detroit, Michigan, Nugent became interested in rock & roll early in the game, picking up the guitar as a youngster, while his disciplinarian father passed his beliefs down to Nugent. In the '60s, Nugent formed his first bands (including Royal High Boys and Lourdes), drawing inspiration from such British blues-rockers as the Rolling Stones and the Yardbirds. But it wasn't until the formation of the Amboy Dukes that the Nuge got his first taste of stardom (it was also around this time that Nugent began playing a Gibson Byrdland guitar, a model that would be instantly associated with him throughout his career). The other members of the group didn't exactly share Nugent's clean-living lifestyle, as proven by their psychedelic hit single "Journey to the Center of the Mind," which Nugent claimed he didn't know at the time was about being "under the influence." The band managed to issue several albums throughout the late '60s -- 1967's self-titled debut, 1968's Journey to the Center of the Mind, and 1969's Migration -- as the group fit in well with other high-energy rock bands that emerged from the Motor City, the MC5 and the Stooges in particular.

With bandmembers coming and going at an alarming rate, Nugent remained the only constant member -- eventually officially changing the band's name to Ted Nugent & the Amboy Dukes by the '70s, and issuing 1971's Survival of the Fittest, 1973's Call of the Wild, and 1974's Tooth, Fang & Claw. While none of these releases exactly stormed the charts, Nugent and his cohorts remained an in-demand concert draw, as he also set up "guitar duels" on-stage around this time (battling with MC5's Wayne Kramer and Mahogany Rush's Frank Marino, among others).

By the mid-'70s, Nugent decided to finally ditch the Amboy Dukes name and set out on his own, assembling a first-rate backing band that included second guitarist/vocalist Derek St. Holmes, bassist Rob Grange, and drummer Cliff Davies. By 1975, the new band was signed to Aerosmith's management company (Leber & Krebs), as well as the same record company, Columbia, resulting in the release of Nugent's self-titled debut in November of the same year. The band immediately struck a chord with the heavy metal/hard rock crowd from coast to coast, due to the band's over the top stage show. But the bandmembers' relationship with Nugent was rocky at best -- Nugent wanted complete control of the band, while the others wanted it to be more of a democracy. The end result was St. Holmes leaving the band prior to the sessions of their sophomore effort, 1976's Free-for-All (which saw a then-unknown singer by the name of Meat Loaf filling in for the departed singer).

St. Holmes returned, however, in time for the album's ensuing tour, and by the release of 1977's Cat Scratch Fever (which spawned the hit single title track), Nugent and company were one of the top rock bands in the U.S. -- storming the charts and selling out arenas coast to coast. By now, Nugent had assumed the stage persona of a caveman -- hitting the stage dressed in nothing but a skimpy loincloth and knee-high boots, and would often begin his show by swinging out on a rope à la Tarzan (!). Like other rock acts of the '70s (Kiss, Cheap Trick, Peter Frampton, etc.), Nugent used a live album -- 1978's classic Double Live Gonzo! -- to catapult his career to the next level of stardom. But despite all the success, the members of his band began deserting him one by one over the course of such albums as 1978's Weekend Warriors, 1979's State of Shock, and 1980's Scream Dream. To add insult to injury, Nugent found himself bankrupt around this time, due to several failed business ventures and poor management.

Nugent continued to tour and crank out albums throughout the '80s (including such forgettable releases as Intensities in 10 Cities, Nugent, Penetrator, Little Miss Dangerous, and If You Can't Lick 'Em...Lick 'Em), but it appeared as through the Nuge was trying to keep pace with the burgeoning pop-metal crowd instead of sticking to the raw and raging rock that brought him success in the first place. Nugent also tried his hand at acting around this time, appearing as a drug dealer in an episode of the hit TV series Miami Vice in 1986. By the end of the decade, Nugent joined the rock supergroup Damn Yankees (joining former Night Ranger bassist/singer Jack Blades, former Styx guitarist/singer Tommy Shaw, and drummer Michael Cartellone) -- resulting in the quartet's self-titled debut in 1990, which became a surprise hit due to their Top Ten power ballad "High Enough." But ultimately, the union proved to be short-lived; after only one more album (1992's lackluster Don't Tread), the band called it quits.

Nugent returned to his solo career, issuing his best album in over a decade, 1995's back-to-basics Spirit of the Wild, while several archival releases turned up throughout the '90s: 1993's three-disc box set Out of Control, 1997's Live at Hammersmith '79, as well as his first three albums reissued with added tracks and newly remastered sound in 1999 by the Epic/Legacy label (also issued at the same time was the first truly comprehensive compilation of the Amboy Dukes, the 18-track Loaded for Bear). The Nuge was also the subject of an interesting VH1 Behind the Music episode. He continued to tour well into the 21st century (landing the opening slot on Kiss' Farewell U.S. Tour in 2000), and issued the third live collection of his career, Full Bluntal Nugity, in 2001. That same year, the Nuge penned his own autobiography, the perfectly titled God, Guns, & Rock n' Roll. His Spitfire-issued 12th long-player, Craveman, dropped in 2002, followed by Love Grenade in 2007. He next embraced the digital realm by releasing the two-disc, 30-track MP3 online song bundle Happy Defiance Day Everyday over the 4th of July weekend in 2010. In 2014 Nugent released his 14th studio album, Shutup & Jam!, which featured a guest appearance from Sammy Hagar.

In addition to music, Nugent has gotten involved in politics, hosting a number one morning radio show in Detroit; has run his own hunting camp and issues instructional videotapes (as well as the Ted Nugent Spirit of the Wild PBS video series); owns his own hunting supply store; has been appointed to the Board of Directors of the National Rifle Association; writes columns regularly for a number of different magazines; and even sells his very own beef jerky (called Gonzo Meat Biltong)! ~ Greg Prato
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Sweden Rocks: Live 2006

1. Stormtroopin' (Live)

2. Wango Tango (Live)

3. Snakeskin Cowboys (Live)

4. Free For All (Live)

5. Wang Dang Sweet Poontang (Live)

6. Raw Dogs & War Hogs (Live)

7. Soul Man (Live)

8. Hey Baby (Live)

9. Dog Eat Dog (Live)

10. Still Raising Hell (Live)

11. Cat Scratch Fever (Live)

12. Stranglehold (Live)

13. Great White Buffalo (Live)

x

Track List: Love Grenade

1. Love Grenade

2. Still Raising Hell

3. Funk U

4. Girl Scout Cookies

5. Journey To The Center Of The Mind

6. Geronimo And Me

7. Eaglebrother

8. Spirit Of The Buffalo

9. Aborigine

10. Stand

11. Broadside

12. Bridges Over Troubled Daughters

13. Lay With Me

x

Track List: Craveman

1. Klstrphnky

2. Crave

3. Rawdogs & Warhogs

4. Damned If Ya Do

5. At Home There

6. C*m N Gitya Sum-O-This

7. Change My Sex

8. I Won't Go Away

9. Pussywhipped

10. Goin Down Hard

11. Wang Dang Doodle

12. My Baby Likes My Butter On Her Gritz

13. Sexpot

14. Earthtones

x

Track List: Live At Hammersmith '79 (Live)

1. Stormtroopin' (Live)

2. Just What The Doctor Ordered (Live)

3. Free-For-All (Live)

4. Dog Eat Dog (Live)

5. Cat Scratch Fever (Live)

6. Need You Bad (Live)

7. Paralyzed (Live)

8. It Don't Matter (Live)

9. Wang Dang Sweet Poontang (Live)

10. Stranglehold (Live)

x

Track List: Great Gonzos! The Best of Ted Nugent (Reissue)

1. Cat Scratch Fever

2. Just What the Doctor Ordered

3. Free-For-All

4. Dog Eat Dog

5. Motor City Madhouse

6. Paralyzed

7. Stranglehold

8. Baby Please Don't Go

9. Wango Tango

10. Wang Dang Sweet Poontang

11. Yank Me, Crank Me

12. Homebound

13. Give Me Just A Little

x

Track List: Double Live Gonzo

Disc 1

1. Just What The Doctor Ordered (Live)

2. Yank Me, Crank Me (Live)

3. Gonzo (Live)

4. Baby Please Don't Go (Live)

5. Great White Buffalo (Live)

6. Hibernation (Live)

Disc 2

1. Stormtroopin' (Live)

2. Stranglehold (Live)

3. Wang Dang Sweet Poontang (Live)

4. Cat Scratch Fever (Live)

5. Motor City Madhouse (Live)

x

Track List: Cat Scratch Fever

1. Cat Scratch Fever

2. Wang Dang Sweet Poontang

3. Death By Misadventure

4. Live It Up

5. Home Bound

6. Workin' Hard, Playin' Hard

7. Sweet Sally

8. A Thousand Knives

9. Fist Fightnin' Son Of A Gun

10. Out Of Control

11. Cat Scratch Fever (Live)

12. Wang Dang Sweet Poontang (Live)

x

Track List: Ted Nugent

1. Stranglehold

2. Stormtroopin'

3. Hey Baby

4. Just What The Doctor Ordered

5. Snakeskin Cowboys

6. Motor City Madhouse

7. Where Have You Been All My Life

8. You Make Me Feel Right At Home

9. Queen Of The Forest

10. Stormtroopin' (Live)

11. Just What The Doctor Ordered (Live)

12. Motor City Madhouse (Live)

13. Magic Party (Outtake)

x

Track List: Shutup&Jam!

1. Shutup&Jam!

2. Fear Itself

3. Everything Matters

4. She's Gone

5. Never Stop Believing

6. I Still Believe

7. I Love My Bbq

8. Throttledown

9. Do-Rags and A .45

10. Screaming Eagles

11. Semper Fi

12. Trample the Weak Hurdle the Dead

13. Never Stop Believing (Blues)

Comments

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mysteriousst r a n g e r s 8 6
❤❤❤❤❤
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Dale, Over rated guitarist? Go listen to Double Live Gonzo. His guitar licks are epic. And regarding his politics.... h e is none of those. He believes in a certain code where freedom rings doesn't mean he is a bigot or racist. Please provide examples where he is anti-gay, anti-woman, anti-black. He may be anti-Islamic militant & having open borders for illegal aliens to continue to take advantage of the USA but I do not think that makes him a racist. Just common sense.
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I LOVE the fact he is conservative and marches to his own drum without concern for what is chic or politically correct all of which is horseshit anyway
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Met him with Aerosmith He walks the walk and talk the talk
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Say it to his face I dare you
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I use to like Ted back in the 70s but now I can't stand him he is a overrated guitarist and a punk his politics sucks he is a hater a racist and bigot he can't make it in music.like I said he is a punk
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On the OUTDOOOR CHANNEL HE'S GOT HIS OWN SHOW BUT I HATE WATCHIN ANIMALS GET KILLED NO MATTER WHAT THE REASON
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YES I AGREE!! HE GAVE TED-SCRATCH FEVER!!!!!
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Love the way Ted plays his guitar he makes it talk to you you can feel it all the way to your soul
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I killed after listening to this.
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Hey baby Uncle TED!!!;)
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Love this song , Queen of the forest, mostly because Ted just plays guitar on it!
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U People suck lol! I'm old n I haven't Never had the. Pleasure of seeing Uncle Ted. I live in SD the place where he comes to hunt n I don't think He's ever Played Here!
..
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I've seen Ted 13 times every time a rock out. That man will shake your soul
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Seen Ted twice... Seattle Coliseum and Ellensburg Washington @ CWU. Ears rang for a week!!! Stranglehold is one of my all time favorites. And, yes I know Ted wasn't the lead.
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ewh001959
Saw him in late 70's, absolutely rock a hockey stadium full of fans. Will see him in August playing at the limited seating State Theatre in Kalamazoo Michigan.
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sswheels72
I'd love to slay a cervid with Uncle Ted. That would be "perfect".
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SAW WHEN HE WORE LOIN CLOTH SWUNG OUT ON STAGE ON ROPE
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dribnack
Kk
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dragonlady60 8 8
ED U ARE A JERKKKKKKK
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dragonlady60 8 8
Ed take sh"t somewhere else. Ty
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dragonlady60 8 8
TEDDDDDDD
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I don't think I'm going to convert him to my political beliefs (or vegetarianis m ) , but I can't live without Motor City Madhouse. Or Great White Buffalo. Or those sweetly vicious instrumental s off of Call of the Wild.

I'll put his leads up against anyone's for pure rock inspiration.
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Ted burnt is my life and I hope he comes to Helena by the way my dad is a great taxidermist Ted so bring your stuff you kill to Schneider taxidermy
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SaWeet
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Thank You for signing My T-Shirt TEDDY!!!.... B A D CO&NUGENT... . . & I WAS .......ON THE FRONT ROW...XXXXXX X O O O O O O O O X X X O
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My fav: GWB!
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1977- Providence RI. First major concert, freshman in HS. Ted did not disappoint. Living in NH, I just found out he is playing at Bike Week @ Laconia 2016. Needless to say, getting VIP tickets so I can meet my idol. I am 53 going on 16. Long live Ted!
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I first saw Ted at SuperJam 76 @ Busch Stadium. I was front and center and he was one of the first to play. I was captivated by the performance and been a fan ever since. Later in life I experienced his performance at the Riverport Amphitheatre in St. Louis and realized and understood his moniker of " Sweaty Teddy ". As he drew a 'lick' from his guitar, the sweat from his arm sprinkled the audience. Myself included.
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kalinaja
I am the biggest
Fan of Ted
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kalinaja
Kick a** Ted
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Saw him live way after the relevant days, but it was still a dream come true!! The essential rock star guitar hero w/o drugs; hilarious when he crossbowed a Bush effigy hanging from the stage...
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THE MAN!!! Nuthin better than playing Stranglehold on PS Guitar Hero--if u can keep up!!!
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Great white Buffalo and hibernation
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irish26144
8-))
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I love the way this song flows. And he makes the solo talk to you. A** KICKIN' ROCK & ROLL
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Curb your elephant
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Bad a** morherfucker rocker. Ted for Prez
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Ted Nugent is coooooool. My Dad says so and so do I.
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I think his break through was as last minute fill in for Lynyrd Skynyrd as back up to Foreigner right after the Skynyrd crash. He blew Foreigner, the headliner away...he was unknown and amazing...
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milosdad
Nugent, Head East and Mahogany Rush in 1976. First time I saw him headline. One of the best shows in my memory.
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Uncle "kill it and Grill it " Ted!
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I wanna hunt, cook, n break bread at the dinner table with Ted n family
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elreycarlos_ 2 0 0 0
Since 77 back in my country Colombia South America Ted has been the guitarist of my preference, even if I didn't understand his lyrics
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Yo
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Uncle Ted for President.
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mdscotty68
Ted went to my high school. Wonder if anyone remembers how he wanted to help the school and they turned him down
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Great tune but s**tty recording can't hear the band to well.
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Classic tedley!!! Saw him with aerosmith headlinin, Kansas..in 75.. Nugent stole the show!! Rock on man
Report as inappropriate
My man! Hot and sweaty, rock and roll teddy. Double live gonzo came out when I was fifteen. It was, and still is my inspiration for playing guitar. Although, I never made the big time, Ted's music makes me keep trying. Never too old for kick a**, balls to the wall, rock and roll.
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