The Inevitable Aftermath of That Kid Rock Rant

"Go Where You're Celebrated, Not Tolerated"

First, there was The Rant. And now this.

The Detroit Free Press is reporting that Kid Rock’s name is coming off of one of the restaurants in the city’s Little Caesars Arena. The company that owns the arena said that Kid Rock voluntarily decided not to renew his licensing agreement for his Made in Detroit restaurant, and that they’d be using that spot for a new eatery that aligns with the community and company values.

Made in Detroit features Kid Rock memorabilia and was built around a Southern menu with a Detroit twist. Some of the best-sellers are the fried Michigan pickles, Maurice salad, and the Clarkston hog.

Kid Rock, who was born and raised near Detroit, was the headliner at the very first concert at the Little Caesars Arena when it opened on Sept. 12, 2017. After his show that night, he walked into Made in Detroit and started pouring patrons the first glasses of his American Badass Lager.

During that show, he shared his love for the city and everyone in it. “Let’s thank the folks who built this place, the construction workers, plumbers, electricians, architects: everyone who got their hands dirty to make this place a reality,” he’d said. “Mr. and Mrs. Ilitch, Chris and Kelly Ilitch, Tom Wilson and the whole organization for their amazing execution. The city of Detroit and its taxpayers for their investment in our great city. Tom Gores for bringing the Pistons back downtown. And, of course, the people who make this place run: the bartenders, servers, ushers, vendors, janitors, security and everyone working hard here to make an honest living. God bless you folks.”

This chain of events all started to snowball after the rocker’s show last week at his Kid Rock’s Big Ass Honky Tonk & Rock ’n’ Roll Steakhouse in Nashville. He shared his opinion of Oprah Winfrey in a rant full of too many expletives to print.

He tweeted his rationale after that initial Nashville incident, and then again after the news about Made in Detroit. And over on on Facebook, he sounded a little disappointed that his hometown had thrown him under the bus, after he had given the city so much of his time, talent and treasure.

“I will not be renewing my licensing agreement for my Made In Detroit Restaurant this April,” he wrote on Facebook. “I appreciate all who have patronized our place and still have much love for the City of Detroit and the people/organizations that I have helped there for years, black, white, whatever, but learned long ago, go where you’re celebrated, not tolerated.

’I guess the millions of dollars I pumped into that town was not enough. I will let the NAN network and others go ahead and take the wheel now. Good luck. I may be guilty of being a loud mouth jerk at times, but trying to label me racist is a joke, and actually only does a disservice to the black community, which I have supported my entire life, by trying to alienate myself and many others.”

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.
@alisonbonaguro