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Shut Your Fucking Face, Uncle Kracker

posted by B on 6/24/01

7 Questions With Uncle Kracker

Over the past few weeks I've been hearing more and more about "Uncle Kracker" on my television and radio. HE'S KID ROCK'S TEX-MEX DJ! HIS MUSIC IS ABOUT FEELING GOOD AND ROCKING OUT! I honestly had no idea who the guy was until an extensive period of research (meaning I typed "Uncle Kracker" on Yahoo) that really opened my eyes. Uncle Kracker's not just a tubby leech sucking the vaginal secretion-laced blood of trailer park rocker Kid Rock...he's a tubby leech sucking the vaginal secretion-laced blood of trailer park rocker Kid Rock TO THE EXTREME!!!

The idea of being able to ask seven questions to the man who currently "busting out" with his own "mellow hit" "Follow Me" and rocking my World Wrestling Federation world of federated wrestling with his "Theme from X-Factor" is an astonishing and admirable task.

So now it goes Uncle Kracker, spinning heel kick, spinning heel kick, spinning heel kick.

What would I ask him? How would I sit there, across from a man assumedly snacking on cheetos or trail mix or whatever (I'm guessing he eats constantly to retain body mass), and get into his mind? Would I need a power question about his childhood? A drill? A power sander?

Thankfully I never had to e-mail him and ask him to "Follow Me" to an interview (haha, I'm such a great writer). Some dinky little website called "SonicNet" (I think they run porn ads or something, I dunno) did the 7 questions with Uncle Kracker ALREADY! "HOLY COW" I said to myself, and (like X-Pac does every time Uncle Kracker plays) raised my hands above my head and slowly walk-danced to my Online Service provider to check it out.

I tend to see things I don't like through beer goggles sometimes, so this is (pretty much) what the site said. If you see any pictures of Sanrio characters, don't be alarmed, I'm just losing consciousness:

With Kid Rock guesting on a few tracks and serving as producer, you'd think Uncle Kracker's debut, Double Wide, would have been shining like the diamonds in his teeth. But it took eight months for the Lynyrd-Skynyrd-meets-hip-hop album to finally take off, thanks to the lazy, countrified ballad "Follow Me." Record buyers were thrown off by the cover art, featuring a picture of a crucifix submerged in urine. "I was just trying to show people what I stood for, and that I am able to catch crosses on fire when I look at them. Follow me!"

Now, 26-year-old Kracker (born Matt Shafer, and completely without love), Kid Rock's DJ and best bud for the past decade, is making a loud noise of his own on an album recorded in the back of the bus on Rock's seemingly endless tour in support of the breakthrough Devil Without a Cause. Kid Rock has also paid for Kracker's home, goes grocery shopping for Kracker, and wipes Kracker's ass for him.

As he prepares to hit the road this summer with Sugar Ray, Kracker sat down to rap with Joe D'Angelo about establishing his own voice, impressing the boss and how a guy who started using turntables before he really knew how could spin off into his own success story.

Sonicnet: If Kid Rock's signature tune is "American Bad Ass," what song on Double Wide best represents Uncle Kracker?

Uncle Kracker: "Better Days." I'm a lot more confident these days than I used to be. "Better Days" suits me best because I'm not that aggressive and I'm not that confident and I'm just that much more laid-back.

Whatever Dude: What "Uncle" is trying to say is that he's a radioactive pussy that turns bright green and rips its pants every time somebody buys his record. Have you actually seen this guy? Kid Rock looks like a dirty junkie who fell out of his local Disabled Veterans clothing store, but at least the guy looks like he cares about what he's doing. How can you look at Uncle Kracker and not want to Twist of Fate his lard ass onto a steel chair? He's got a beer gut, the cloned head of the stool pounder from Smash Mouth, and what appears to be Pamela Anderson's wardrobe. A guy like this shouldn't be famous, he should be selling me a sassy T-shirt about how cool marijuana is at Hot Topic. So I reiterate the Twist of Fate onto the steel chair. Only replace "Twist of Fate" with "shotgun blast" and "onto a steel chair" with "into a shallow grave."

Sonicnet: To listen to your second single, "Follow Me," you wouldn't think it's an Uncle Kracker tune.

Whatever Dude: You would think it was the mating call of some sort of homosexual whale.

Kracker: It's definitely different from the whole record. But when we first started recording that song, with us being from Detroit, that song was supposed to be this doo-wop/Motown song — something different, because every song's got its own little twist. And this song was supposed to have that, but after we recorded it, I was like, 'Man, that could be something for radio,' so we switched it back.

Whatever Dude: "Man, that could be something for radio. It's almost as good as 'Bootylicious' but not quite as good as 'No More (Baby I'm a Do Right).'" One thing we can thank sweet Christ for is that "Follow Me" isn't this doo-wop/Motown song, because my body only holds a certain amount of feces, FAR less feces to hurl than necessary to express proper disdain for an Uncle Kracker doo-wop/Motown song. Also thankfully the "own little twist" to each song is that it sucks Eddie Murphy talking CGI Donkey ass, and can easily be splattered with any available amount of feces.

Kracker: It takes on a couple of different meanings. I've heard some people think that I'm talking about drugs, or some people think I'm talking about cheating. I guess it's kinda both. I would never want to say anything that would get myself in trouble, being married with a couple of kids. That song is like a dirty picture painted with a pretty brush.

Whatever Dude:

Follow me
Everything is all right
I'll be the one to tuck you in at night
And if you want to leave
I can guarantee
You won't find nobody else like me

It's not about cheating or drugs. It's about sadness. Lots and lots of sadness.

That song is like a dirty picture painted by a kid with slobbery down syndrome hands and stuck with a "You Can Do It" magnet to a rusty old yellow ghetto refrigerator. It's yellow because I've been urinating on it since time began. That's just BEGINNING to put into words the failure of Uncle Kracker, both as a serious musician and a celebrity. His songs aren't "deep"...they don't have "multiple meanings." From a professional point of view (sitting here in my underwear eating Froot Loops) it sounds like some chode smoker got the poems he wrote in 10th grade Creative Writing greenlighted by his popular friend.

Sonicnet: How does it feel now that the album is finally taking off nine months after it was released?

Kracker: It gives you that kind of "I told you so" feeling, 'cause the last thing you want to see is your record sit on a shelf. You go and you do it, and you work for a record deal, and you [write] a record, and you put it out, and it doesn't sell, and you're kinda like, "What? That's not the way it's supposed to work." So in the end, you're kinda like, "Man, I knew that record was good." ... My record did the same exact thing [as Kid Rock's Devil Without a Cause]. It sat around for that long before it kinda took off. I mean, the odds say it ain't gonna do [as well as Devil Without a Cause], but it's doing well enough. It should be platinum in a day or so, and I couldn't be happier.

Whatever Dude: Can you believe that this guy is egotistical about his success? The man obviously and illogically shops at teenager RaVeRR d00d stores at the mall and poses for "pensive" and "sensual" pictures for his webpage.

I'll be the one to tuck you in at night? How old are you, five?

This guy "couldn't be happier" because now he can pay people to help him not get beat up. Would you hang out with this guy? I think I would, if I wanted to spend my days sitting in the basement reading Megadeth comics and trying to play "Enter Sandman" on the guitar my dad bought me for my fourteenth birthday.

But back to what he's saying..."Man, I knew that record was good."

Let me take the mature, objective stance on this. When I worked at Blockbuster Video, people would routinely return the fantastic film "Life is Beautiful" because it was "in EYE-TAL-YUN." So, instead of taking in a piece of art dictating a fathers love for his child, family, and life amidst the Holocaust, the people would rent "For Richer or Poorer" and laugh at Tim Allen making "rauh rauh rauh" noises. Life IS beautiful, but a lot of it ends up looking like the inside of Kathie Lee Gifford's thigh: stretched and gasping for air. I've tried for YEARS to figure out why people can shun the things that could bring them the most satisfaction. Why watch Tim Allen movies? Why listen to Uncle Kracker's music? Why go to Shoney's when you could hold your wiener up and just piss into your mouth and get the same taste?

The answer came to me in a blinding vision, bringing hope and inspiration for years to come. It was a familiar voice, a voice I haven't heard in a long time. The voice of the one person who is enlightened enough to help the world help itself. The voice...of Butthead.

"You've got to have stuff that sucks to have stuff that's cool."

Stuff that sucks.

Sonicnet: Do you think you're ready to headline big shows on your own?

Kracker: I've always had this plan with Kid Rock. Just being best friends, we sat around for a long time going, 'OK, what we're going to do is take the Kid Rock thing and do this with it, and then we're going to spawn you off and it's gonna be Uncle Kracker this and that.' It kinda didn't take shape as soon as we thought it would have. Now everything's falling into place. We knew going into it that the odds of someone going from a big group and splitting off and doing a solo project [weren't good]. There hasn't been many people that have had success doing it. I'm just happy to have done what we've done with it so far. Only because going into it, the odds weren't looking so sweet. ... I don't know if it was a plan so much as a pipe dream, but it was definitely something that we've always wanted and talked about, and now it's here. Now we're talking about maybe touring together.

Whatever Dude: "After that I'm going to start a family...but I'm not sure if I'll be able to do it, so I'll just pretend that I really have Kid Rock's children, and that Kid Rock's wife is my wife. It might just be a pipe dream, and it probably won't happen, because I'm not confident, and I don't believe in myself, but I knew it would happen whether it will or not, but I know it will. Anyway, I once put Kid Rock's dick in my mouth while he was sleeping and took a picture."

That Sonicnet question should be read aloud, like you're the voice guy for the new Capcom fighting game and Sonicnet's getting ready to challenge Uncle Kracker. "Do you think you're ready to headline big shows on your own? Get up!! It's too early for you to be defeated!"

Follow me! You can do a hyper combo!

SonicNet: During Kid Rock's tour last summer, there was a portion of the show where you stepped up and performed Uncle Kracker songs.

Kracker: Yeah, and that always felt weird to me. Because we didn't want to shove it down anybody's throats, but at the same time we knew we were gearing up for me to go out by myself. I've been sitting behind him for so long that for me to try and come out and overcome the being in the background thing was kind of a way to do it, too. ... The reception wasn't so bad because I'm in the group, and here I come up front. Some people didn't know how to take it.

Whatever Dude: What Kid Rock does isn't brain surgery. It's not like he's in the middle of reattaching some poor kids spine and turns to Male Nurse Kracker and says "all right, time for you to take over." As countless bands like Lifehouse, Papa Roach, or (LADIES AND GENTLEMEN I PRESENT TO YOU THE WORST BAND IN THE HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSE) 311 prove, all you have to do to draw the disillusioned rocker kid crowd is to play something loud and scream. That's it. No "deep songwriting," no "message," no "role models." It's just show up, scream, fuck the groupies, and leave. Aerosmith's been doing it for almost seventy years. Unless you think that "Pink is my favorite crayon" is a cry for unity across nations.

Kracker: What was weird was going up and singing "Follow Me" in front of everybody. Especially this last tour, where it was Buckcherry, Fuel, Kid Rock, and in the middle of this Kid Rock set, here I come, and I'm singing "Follow Me" to all these rock 'n' roll kids. Just to deal with that in your head was like, 'Man, this ain't so good.' But I'll tell you what — them kids, they either knew it or they didn't, but they didn't boo, they didn't frown. It helped me a lot to be able to do that, to be able to come out in front of those kids and do what we were doing. They were really good to me.

Whatever Dude: Anyway, those people "didn't know how to take it" because it was a complete 180. You've got this skinny guy who rails (depending on your time of reference) porn stars/Pamela Anderson on a regular basis throwing his dimestore hat around and (depending on your time of reference) hip hopping around with/without a midget. Then, the lights go down and the cottage cheese ass from the Gadzooks saunters up to sing about marriage.

The kids didn't boo or frown because they'd been blindsided. It's like going to a Dixie Chicks concert and "hoot nannying" (if that's conjugated properly) to some down home feminist activism and having Marilyn Manson spring in and tie them all up with humorously oversized old dental equipment. Sure, some of the 12 year olds in leather pants and animal-print cowboy hats would sprint away, screaming for their lives, but most people would just sit with their jaws on the ground staring at Mansons jiggly plastic ass pants.

I guess that solves the whole "why do people like Kid Rock in the first place" debate. Next to Uncle Kracker I'd expect him to start giving sight to the blind and turning water into Pabst Blue Ribbon.

So I think I'll keep walking...with my HEAD! HELD! HIGH! I'll keep moving on... and only Dad knows why

SonicNet: When you first met up with Kid Rock, you had no formal musical training and no DJ training at all, right?

Kracker: None. When it came time for me to start doing stuff with him, I was barely 16. In fact, I had just gotten my license probably like a week or two earlier. He calls me up because he had some issues with his DJ — something happened — and he needed a DJ for a show he was doing. So he put me behind the turntables, and I was there more or less as something for people to look at, because I didn't know what the hell I was doing — I just started learning at the shows. And I'd be doing backup vocals. There was even a point where I was doing everything from behind the turntables. I was running samplers and doing the turntables and working the lights and working the fog machines — basically everything that you can stick behind the tables, that's what I was doing. So every now and then, during the show, I would hit a little scratch or two and hope that it didn't suck.

Whatever Dude: "Okay, so we're gonna have a contest to find FIVE, SEXY BOYS to be in our new band! We're gonna give them singing and dancing lessons, have them live together in a loft, and tape their lives! It's gonna be FAB!"

I don't think any little girls are gonna tune in after Clarissa the Teenage Witch to watch "Making the Fat Country Western DJ with the Sissy Voice." When I was fourteen my friends and I would dress up like luchadors and video tape ourselves fake wrestling, and it was a lot of fun. You never saw Vince McMahon show up and snag my friend Christian Robinson away, because the WWF really wanted a fat guy in a luchador mask and some soccer shorts to stand in the ring while the Stone Cold and The Rock went at it, did you? Why do people in the music industry give jobs to people who have no idea what they're doing? You can't fly to Paris and stroll into Le Louvre with that KILLER colored pencil drawing of Optimus Prime drawing you did in Kindergarten and get it strung up on the wall next to the Mona Lisa. Club owners need to take it upon themselves to drag people who have no idea what they're doing out into the street and execute them gang style.

SonicNet: What did you contribute to Devil Without a Cause, and what did Kid Rock contribute to your record?

Kracker: I CO-wrote most of the record with him. Kid Rock knows what he wants, and I'll finish a verse or two for a song. He'll start something and work on something else right away. He can put together a song and already know that it's done, even when it's not. I'm like the seal of approval. I'll just sit back and give the nod, like yea or nay, and that's just always how we've worked together. Like, I can say, 'Oh, this would sound better like that,' or 'That sucks,' or 'Do something different.' That's more or less my role in the overall thing, aside from writing a couple of verses here, a hook there and verse here, just helping him finish a line. He contributed to my record what I contributed to his record. I've sat around with him for the past 10 years just making songs. There are literally hundreds of Kid Rock songs that probably won't ever see the light of day. If we didn't do anything in a day, at least we made a song, because neither one of us had jobs. It was just something to do. Now it's sweet because we're doing it for something.

Whatever Dude: And let that be a lesson from "your uncle" fair readers of Whatever-Dude...if you've got a friend who's gonna make it big, be the guy who gets to sit next to him and NOD while he works his ass off to make a name for himself. It worked for Uncle Kracker, it worked for Jason Mewes, and it worked for that one Backstreet Boy's little brother. Have you ever heard that little 12 year old rap about how he beat Shaq at basketball? Why in God's green name does that exist? I want to strangle every little girl who ever even THOUGHT about screaming at that little dork until her dad rushes into the room and I have to jump out through the window.

Not that that's ever happened.

But it should happen, and if the crazy people of America really can't stop the urge to murder someone, why can't we organize a program to help weed society? That idiot who tossed the dog off a bridge and into traffic is gonna get ass raped like nobody's business for seven years in prison. Is it worth it? If he'd ripped off Christina Aguilera's pants and taken a picture of it he'd be a hero to every Nude Celebrity webmaster and "starving to death" fetishist across the globe. Phil Hartman's wife went bonkers and murdered one of the best comedians who ever lived, the guy who helped write "Pee-wee's Big Adventure" and voiced about a thousand characters on the Simpsons. Couldn't she have just killed Rob Schneider instead?

Unfortunately, nobody consulted me when the world was created or when America started being America, so I'm shit out of luck. So if we've learned nothing else from this bitter diatribe ... and we haven't ... it's these three things:

1) If you're going to go nutso and kill your friends, take a moment to reconsider and kill one of the following: David Arquette, Paul Reiser, Todd Newton of E!, the guy who hosts "America's Funniest Animals" (I've lovingly named him "Cockmaster"), Jessica Simpson, one or more guys from Creed, Andy Dick.

2) Find somebody who has something to say in life, sit next to them and nod until they make you a lot of money. Being a yes man rips your integrity from you, but if you're seriously planning on being a yes man you probably didn't have much integrity anyway.

And finally,

3) Shut your fucking face, Uncle Kracker. You're a boner-biting bastard, Uncle Kracker.

And here comes the chorus of farts.

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