Ted Nugent: 'Jack White Lacks Soul, I'm Not Hearing a Tight Groove'

"WTF was that? No Motown soul," Uncle Ted says about White's "Fallon" performance.

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Ted Nugent has recently criticized Jack White for lacking soul in his music and overall performance, focusing on the musician's "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" appearance.

"Anybody see Jack White on 'Fallon?' wtf was that? No Motown soul," Nugent tweeted.

Elaborating his stance in more detail, the Motor City Madman noted during a Fuse interview, "I was quite shocked. I don't want to be critical - I want to celebrate Detroit - but I just didn't get it.

"I know he wants to be avant-garde and I know he likes the dissonance, and I could tell he was looking for conflicting rhythms and sounds. And I'm a fan of Sun Ra, Yusef Lateef, John Coltrane, so I get that. But it doesn't make me want to shake a tail feather," he added.

"It did not make me want to shimmy. But I'm spoiled because I came up around - and created - the ultimate shimmy music of all time. I'm not hearing a tight groove [with Jack White]."

Continuing with criticism, Ted stated, "I just couldn't connect with the overt scramble for making a fashion statement with his hair, hat and suit from 1966. Sure, it was stimulating, but so is a Ferris wheel."

Pointing out that his comments shouldn't be taken as ill-willed, the guitarist added, "I wish Jack godspeed - he's made some brilliant musical statements throughout his career and I expect he will do more, but his performance was a grave letdown. And I wanted to love it because it's so Detroit. I'm so hopelessly Detroit.

"And Detroit for me means the Motown Funk Brothers, the Bob Seger groove, the Eminem groove, the Kid Rock groove, the Amboy Dukes tightness. And I know good music that makes me want to shake, and Jack didn't. I was let down. I don't think I was mean-spirited in my tweet, do you?"

Asked to single out a few contemporary musicians he loves, Nugent replied, "Oh God almighty, another Detroit monster is Chad Smith of the Chili Peppers. Their music is intoxicating between Flea and Chad Smith. They're contemporary because they're still making good records, but I don’t think there's anything new that has a groove and soulfulness.

"The Chili Peppers just stink of soul - and that's the ultimate compliment. They continue what James Brown created. I like Dave Grohl, I guess he's a little newer. It makes you shake, it's uppity and spirited."

Finally, Uncle Ted shared his thoughts on the Black Keys. "It grabs me, but not as much as it grabs some of the other people that rave about them. They have a nice funk thing going on and it reminds me of Funkadelic, but it's not quite grinding enough for me. I think the Chili Peppers out-grind the Black Keys.

"I respect and admire the Black Keys, but there's no guitar solos. With the Black Keys, I'm missing crescendos with the sax, keyboard or guitar solo. It never comes to me. All my favorite music is rife with crescendo and I'm not hearing enough with them. If you can get the Black Keys to hear this, tell them I offer my crescendo guitar anytime they desire it."

Nugent's new album, "Shutup&Jam," is due out on July 8 via Frontiers Records. Check out the recently unleashed track "I Love MY BBQ" below, as well as White's "Lazaretto" performance on "Fallon."

anybody see JackWhite on Fallon? wtf was that? No MotownSoul

— Ted Nugent (@TedNugent) June 11, 2014

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103 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Sewage Rat
    Obviously people bitch about Ted here but he stated his opinion clearly and did not insult anyone, one of the better Ted interviews.
    akasinan
    I know, I was surprised it wasn't directly insulting anyone or actually about music.
    entropicxdisson
    I'm wondering if anyone but Ted had same the same, would people be as pissed, Jack White is one of the most overrated guitarists ever. He plays Zepplin-esque riffs and generic indie-infused blues wankery. He only get's attention because he's "weird" and that's what sells these days. I like a lot of the White Stripes material but he's slipped off ever since.
    SkilletFan77
    Uncle Ted needs to go back to the woods.
    sweenster
    Disagree, Jack White is easily the most overrated guitarist out there today in my opinion.
    coffinpilot
    You can't overate shite . As for Ted ..... A man with small cock syndrome or what ???!!! Fucking BBQ your german helmet you incest ridden peado .
    Dokkie
    I must say i like Jack White. - but still i must agree with Ted Nugent in some way. I just saw him a few days ago, and seemed very routined but sad to say he was lifted up by his band. Maybe he is too pretentious.. I don't know But hey, cool he is out there compared to a lot of other shit out there! - Good day!
    ledzep426
    routined? he has never used a setlist in his life, not to mention he hardly plays a song the same way twice
    Jorge13ruiz
    "I love my BBQ its what Africans do." Is truly some of the greatest lyrics of our generation. In fact, not since Shakespeare has someone truly poetically expressed human emotion in such a way. Bravo Ted Nugent only you can truly make the soul stink of soul.
    Megadeth2011
    I like Jack White, but I'll be honest... Ted has a point. The last time I saw Jack, it was like he was just going through the motions and wasn't all that into the music. It was a huge letdown.
    N7Crazy
    Saw him at Roskilde Festival exactly two days ago (to the pinpoint of the hour even!) - The entire performance was one of the greatest shows I've ever been to. He put a ton of energy into each song, and you could see he was greatly passionate about the music. He was amongst the best 3 acts I saw this year, with the others being The Rolling Stones and Deftones. He took songs that I only liked before and made me love them, and took songs I already loved and made me love them even more - The entire concert was a blast, amongst the best concerts I've overall ever been to. Of course, this might not always be the case as for your experience, but I do not think Ted has a case, peticularly not when based on his performance on Fallon - It's not his best, but it's certainly not bad either.
    godofdoss
    I'll be honest, I don't think its the best song/performance from Jack White. But then I listened to to that BBQ song, What the actual F**K was that? Did a 6 year old write the lyrics? If that's the kind turgid waffle Nugent is putting out he has no right to an opinion
    Ultach
    It's obviously tongue-in-cheek.
    godofdoss
    I think my original point is getting lost a little. THE MAN WROTE A SONG ABOUT COOKED MEAT! Wtf is his next song going to be? I Love my cheese board?
    dewitt
    You must have missed his song about girl scout cookies... titled Girl Scout Cookies. It's actually not bad and has a nice riff, but yeah.
    cotlodjimmy
    and a 5 year old wrote the guitar line to jacks song. "bum, bum bum bum bum bun bum!" and a todler could have played the drum groove - Straight 1/4 beats. Its sad what passes for music these days. My advice to jack -- Take some time off get really good lessons, understand music theory and then try writing another song. Just please spare us from the atrocity that is you and the white stripes.
    godofdoss
    entropicxdisson
    or someone that knows that being simplistic to have "indie cred" is not what making music is about. As much as people on this site bitch about "rock being dead" guess what people like Jack White killed it.
    N7Crazy
    Rock has benifited a lot because of Jack - I've seen a lot of young people who were mainly interrested in pop/techno before take a interrest into blues and rock because of both The White Stripes and his solo project. He can write not only catchy, but also gritty, and overall great songs that can catch and keep the attention of people to take a deeper look into the genre of blues/rock, and that's no small feat in this day and age of a fastfood-like consumption of easy listning music.
    TomWhaley
    If there is somebody in this equation that lacks soul, it's not Jack White.
    itsgoodtobefree
    Jack White was fantastic with The White Stripes. Ever since he went solo, his music hasn't been that good. I mean, I respect this alt-country thing that he has going on, but none of his songs really grab me anymore. Some of the lyrics are pretty awful, too. As for Nugent, he's entitled to his own opinion. I saw him live a few years ago, and all the concert was was a political rally, and I lost a bunch of respect for the guy.
    matteo cubano
    the loud, rockier ones are awesome. the rest of it just has interesting elements throughout the songs but none as a whole really come together
    Naberz09
    Ted is just jealous because he only made three good songs in his entire career and Jack White has entire albums that are masterpieces.
    dewitt
    The first Ted Nugent album is a great album. The rest of his stuft is definitely hit or miss. Mostly miss.
    westley23j
    that depends on who you ask. talk to someone who grew up and listened to music from back then, they would agree with you, but only reverse the names
    crazyhorse174
    "Nugent's new album, "Shutup&Jam," is due out on July 8 via Frontiers Records." And therein lies the reason for so many Nugent articles this week. No such thing as bad publicity.
    satansnachos
    Ok everyone, we have a choice to make. Either we can bash each other's brains out about what Ted said, or we can talk about boobies. The decision is yours
    adambauman31
    I have nothing against Jack White and actually really like a dozen or so songs that he has done over his career, but the video above seems like something is missing.
    BeMyBeach
    Jack White feeds of his crowds. This was a T.V. performance, so they were probably distanced from him. Check out his performance at Bonnaroo. He owned the stage, and had us in the palm of his hands.
    ledzep426
    Bonnaroo was intense and i saw it in bad quality on my laptop. but these are festival crowds. Jack goes mental at headline admission shows. His fans are great and therefore he plays insane lengthy sets
    WardLucas
    Jack White is a phony and the new album sucks. It's boring and he tries too hard. He's very inauthentic.
    jasonbloss
    That song, and the entire album, is complete garbage. And I ain't talkin about Jack.
    Cazman
    "But I'm spoiled because I came up around - and created - the ultimate shimmy music of all time." Who continues to give two shits about this guy? Why can't he just **** off and shoot beer bottles in his backyard?
    javdoc
    Not to be critical Ted, but you're a cheesy overrated hack and any resemblance of success or respect you had slipped away a long, long, long time ago.....
    davem27
    I see where ted is coming from; id expect more jack white. That was bad and definitely had no groove. Ted's song was slightly better but still pretty bad with those lyrics. He gave props to the chili peppers; i dislike him a little less.
    cotlodjimmy
    tempest327
    Generic progression, generic beat, generic lyrics...was there a reason you linked that?
    ledzep426
    this song is not an accurate representation of Jack's extensive and prolific career. This is just entry level rock, not even entry level Jack
    cotlodjimmy
    i was trying to deomnstrate my above comment as i could not portray the sillines that is Jack White's "music"This clip is only to show how cheesy and simplistic it is.
    hardrocker64
    Stranglehold is a badass song, better than anything Jack has ever done. 1 nil Ted. like soccer, will be the final score.
    RooTOfAllEvil
    The NUGE can play better than white ever dreamed of
    N7Crazy
    Yngwie Malmsteen can play better than almost any blues/rock musician, but that doesn't make him a great musician - The same goes for your statement. I mean jesus butt****ing mother mary christ, "I love my BBQ"?! Even the poorer songs of Jack White are better than that steaming pile of crap. The same goes album-wise - Jack White still hasn't created any bad album, let alone arguably mediecore. The same can not be said for ol' uncle Ted *coughLittlemissdangerouscough*. Btw "The nuge" sounds like a terrible high school nickname invented by some douchebag jock for himself, and only used by himself.
    Cazman
    "The nuge" sounds more like something that a douchebag jock would do to a nerd.
    sweathog14
    I'm pretty sure the huge fans of the ULTIMATE GUITAR TEAM purposely put a really crappy Ted song to snide at him. I agree with you on Yngwie...I can't even listen to it. But Nugent is not in that vein at all.
    NorCalLos
    What's funny is the bass intro sounds like the Chili Peppers' "Get Up and Jump."
    Blind In 1 Ear
    "I don't want to be critical" then shut the **** up. no one gives a shit. why do people keep thinking they can say things like this as fact? just because YOU don't feel it, doesn't mean the artist doesn't. there ARE different kinds of music you know, they don't all have to have "motown soul". i don't even listen to jack white.
    Mixloopx
    It was an interview. He was asked a question and he answered it without insulting anyone. All of his answers were nothing more than his opinions. That's why he keeps saying that he personally doesn't find certain things as enjoyable as others do. In no moment Ted said his opinions were facts. He has as much of a right to voice his opinion as you. You just seem to have a problem with people whose opinions differ from yours.
    King_Dime
    I have been listening to Ted since the 70s. My general feeling about him is, he sucks BUT has a couple of GREAT songs. Jack White is great.
    coreymineard
    Old man Nugent is trying to be relevant again... At least Jack White knows what he likes, and doesn't regurgitate the same garbage, like Ted.
    KingV911
    As I read the article I thought "aw shut up Ted, you are such a windbag". Then I watched the Jack White video from Jimmy Fallon. Well, now I agree with Ted that it was bad, but I still don't see why he had to go out there and publicly bash it. Sure, watching a guy who looks like Edward Scissorhands play some generically crappy funk/psychadelic/indie sounding song is worthy of bashing in private, but you don't need to go out of your way to bash your peers in a tween Uncle Ted!
    ewolf5150
    people can bitch and disagree with uncle ted as much as they want but he is one of the most underrated guitarists and is amazing live. when you write a riff and song as amazing as stranglehold then you can complain. I don't let his political views and rants get in the way of enjoying ted music. my dad raised me on ted nugent and i'm glad he did.
    sinterpol
    "I just couldn't connect with the overt scramble for making a fashion statement with his hair, hat and suit from 1966. Sure, it was stimulating, but so is a Ferris wheel." Bahahahahaha! Win. (Coming from a huge Jack White fan)