Kid Rock’s Label Told Him “Picture” Featuring Sheryl Crow Would Kill His Career

Kid Rock Sheryl Crow
Warner Music

The radio game was not one that Kid Rock was willing to play.

Sitting in with Joe Rogan, Kid Rock, and the podcast host talked about everything under the sun, from drugs to becoming the face of the Bud Light hate movement to music; Kid Rock is one hell of a character.

One portion of the podcast that I found interesting was when Rogan and Rock got on the topic of his radio hits. If you know Kid Rock today, you know he beats to his own drum, but that “my way” philosophy has always been instilled in him since his early career. While everyone wanted commercial success, Rock wasn’t willing to play into the game fully and still wanted to produce music that he felt was going to be timeless and well-loved.

“I only had a few radio hits. I always say I was willing to tickle some balls, but I was not willing to insert p**** into mouth.” 

Kid ‘Rock then says that the MTV craze during his prime was more influential to his career than chasing that number-one hit. After he signed his record deal, he was willing to play the radio game a little bit and shared he was advised not to release a song that would become one of his biggest radio hits.

“Then I came out with ‘Picture’ and they told me this is going to kill your career… like a little ****** country song. They literally told me this was going to kill my ****** career. My mindset at that point was I wanted to try and make classic records. Not hits, you know, something that will stick around.

It’s hard to nail it, I’ve probably made a thousand songs and there’s only a handful of ****** great ones in there. it’s like being a photographer, you take a 1thousand pictures hoping you get five good ones.”

That song featured Sheryl Crow was a song that stuck around for sure, making it one of the most well-known songs out of Kid Rock’s catalog. Released in 2002 as the fourth single from Kid Rock’s 2001 album Cocky, the song was actually re-recorded with Allison Moorer because Crow’s label wouldn’t release the rights for a radio single. But… a large number of radio stations started playing the Sheryl Crow duet anyways and the rest is history. The song is still his highest charting single of all time, as well as one of his few singles to chart at country radio.

And while that duet is still pretty iconic, Rock then admits that he and Crow are not as close as they once were and how their political views hinder the friendship at times.

“Our politics don’t line up so well these days… we are still friendly. We don’t talk as much. We’ve sat down recently and were talking about gun control.

She said ‘no one in this town, country artists, will talk to me about this.’ And I said, ‘ Sheryl, well if you want gun control, you should move back to LA or New York City, it’s very prevalent there but it’s just not the Tennessee way of life.”

While the two might not see eye to eye on a lot of things these days, I sure am glad they saw eye to eye when writing this song. It’s such a classic.

Listen to the full podcast episode here:

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock