Rhymin’ and Stealin’: Kid Rock’s All Summer Long

Okay, so I guess Kid Rock’s idea was to borrow heavily from two of his summer favorites growing up: “Sweet Home Alabama” and “Werewolves of London”. The result, “All Summer Long”, is zooming up the charts as we speak (currently #34 on the Billboard Hot 100).

It’s an interesting concept. And depending how popular the song gets, you have to wonder if the copycats will soon follow. What does this say for originality in songwriting? Come to think of it, hip-hop artists have been doing this for years now. Some sampling is so blatant, and shapes the song so much, it’s a wonder they can get away with it at all (I keep thinking of that Puff Daddy song that was basically Zeppelin’s “Kashmir”, with Diddy “uhh”ing and “yeah”ing his way through it).

So what do you all think of this? Lynyrd Skynyrd and Warren Zevon’s estate have to be getting paid for this, right? (or whoever owns the songs)…

Kids…. this is Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama“, and this is the late, great Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves in London“.

Gotta hand it to Kid Rock though. He’s hitting that nostalgia vein hard – playing to the masses like the populist he is.

6 thoughts on “Rhymin’ and Stealin’: Kid Rock’s All Summer Long

  1. You know, the first time I heard this (which was back in ’07… Can you believe this album has been on the charts this freakin’ long?!?!?!)… Anyway, as I was saying, when I first heard it, I hated it. How could anyone try to steal Warren’s classic song?!

    Eventually, though, it grew on me. The more I listen to the words of the song, the more I realize that he’s not just sampling the music, he’s putting his teenage summer in context by inserting clips of the music he listened to then. Deep, huh?

    I saw Kid on one of the late night talk shows and he said besides these two, there’s a Steve Miller tune in there, too. For the life of me, I can’t hear it. Anyone else?

    🙂

  2. No one who writes a three-chord song (especially a three-chord I-IV-V song) shoud *ever* accuse anyone else of stealing.

    My son and I got into this discussion after hearing Kid Rock’s take on the Alabama riff. I’m sure it wouldn’t take me more than five minutes research to find ten more songs using this chord sequence. Zevon’s version is my favorite, though.

    Back when I was playing in a band, we used to do medleys to emphasize the fact that a lot of songs are really the same song recycled. My favorite was the “Cherry Cherry / What I like about you / R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A.” medley, but we had plenty of others. “25 or 6 to 4 / Babe I’m gonna leave you” also springs to mind.

    “Music is everybody’s possession. It’s only publishers who think that people own it.” [John Lennon]

    (By the way — I’m back. I’ll get back to the Friday Five soon…)

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