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Why Ted Nugent’s Label Tried to Keep ‘Stranglehold’ Off His Album

Why Ted Nugent’s Label Tried to Keep ‘Stranglehold’ Off His Album

Ted Nugent says his record label tried to keep him from recording “Stranglehold” for his debut album.

He didn’t listen, of course. Instead the eight minute-long epic quickly became Nugent’s signature song, partly because of its length and unusual structure, which is exactly what made the record executives nervous about including it on the album.

In a new interview on the Dr. Music show, which you can watch in full below, Nugent explains how his record label, producers, crew and bandmates tried to stage an anti-“Stranglehold” intervention prior to the album’s recording sessions.

“All of a sudden, the tone of the meeting, I sense some confusion, I sense some [discomfort] in the room. I think it was [co-producer] Lew Futterman, it’s almost like he got a nod from the bosses of the record label, and went, ‘Well, we’re excited about the songs, Ted. We’ve all talked about it. Everybody voted to not record “Stranglehold” because it doesn’t have a chorus, and nobody is gonna play an eight-minute song with all that ‘guitar part’ in it.’”

You can guess how well that went over with the Nugent. “I said, ‘I love you guys, but that’s insane! Since when is there a rule: ‘A song has to have a chorus’? It doesn’t have to have a chorus. It’s a movement, it’s a song. And by the way, you all signed me and gave me a lot of money because you came to ten of my concerts and you saw how the people love the song ‘Stranglehold.’ And now you want to take it off the record? I was wondering if you guys got the alert, and it sounds like this: ‘Fuck you! Double fuck you!’ By the way, we have a recording session that starts in one hour. Let’s go to the studio because I have a song to record. The first one’s gonna be fucking ‘Stranglehold.'”

READ MORE: 15 Artists Who Hated Their Own Hit Songs

Released in September 1975, with “Stranglehold” as its opening track, Ted Nugent’s self-titled debut album made him a star, cracking the Top 30 and eventually selling over two million copies.

“What it teaches me, and it taught me a long time ago [is] if you are doing something onstage every night that just causes the people to just go nuts, that’s what you need to do,” Nugent concludes. “I do it because I go nuts, and I’m a music fan before I’m a musician. And if I see the corroboration of the entire audience going berserk with me, I go, ‘well, we might want to keep that move!'”

Ted Nugent Interview With Dr. Music

15 Rock Songs That Are Actually Really Creepy

A rock song that’s unambiguously creepy can certainly be unsettling. But what about the kind of tune that sneaks up on you with its creepiness? It might have a sunny melody or what seems like a simple lovelorn lyric. Yet, beneath the surface, something more deceivingly dastardly lurks. Here are just a few examples of rock songs that are actually really creepy.

Gallery Credit: Philip Trapp