Ted Nugent - lead guitars, vocals; Derek St. Holmes - lead vocals, guitars; Rob Grange - bass; Clifford Davies - drums
This swashbuckling Ted Nugent concert was captured for the King Biscuit Flower Hour on August 29, 1975 at Central Park in New York City. This show took place only a few months after Nugent's self-titled debut solo album hit stores. The Motor City Madman and co. are in fine form, as they perform four of songs from Nugent's seminal 1975 release.
After a nearly 10-minute jam session, the group opens up the second track from the aforementioned record, "Stormtroopin'." The five-and-a-half minute tune shows off Nugent's bluesy lead playing and the warm, powerful vocals of vocalist Derek St. Holmes. After that, they kick straight into the similarly rollicking "Just What the Doctor Ordered" that finds the band bubbling over with raucous passion. From there, they move into one of their biggest ever hits, "Stranglehold." The ten-plus minute jam will be a dream for guitar players, because Nugent's playing is incredible. Also, bass player Rob Grange proves that Nugent isn't the only capable musician of the bunch. The band rounds out the almost 40-minute set with an energetic version of "Motor City Madhouse." The famous shredder lends his manic vocals to this stirring, bluesy jam.
By the time the final notes of "Motor City Madhouse" ring out, it is clear that the band is absolutely spent, and for good reason. A performance this blistering is libel to even exhaust the person listening at home.
Ted Nugent, despite his cartoon antics, is a formidable rock guitarist who has penned some great songs over the course of his 40-year music career. First breaking onto the music scene with the Detroit-based Amboy Dukes, Nugent got an early taste of success when the group's second album, Journey to the Center of the Mind, hit the top of the charts in 1967. Nugent, however, has long been a vocal anti-drug conservative and was clearly fronting the wrong band. In 1970, he assembled a backing trio and changed the name of his act to Ted Nugent and the Amboy Dukes.
By 1975, he had moved from Warner Brothers to Epic Records, where his frenzied, crazy man of rock persona took over with over-the-top hard rock songs like "Stranglehold" and "Wango Tango." Nugent put his solo career on hold to develop an '80s supergroup with members of Styx and Night Ranger, called Damn Yankees. They would have a few hits and some successful tours before breaking up.
Today, Nugent splits his time between making music and hosting a conservative talk radio show.