At 27 years of age, Bob Ritchie certainly isn't a kid anymore. And the songs on his new Atlantic/Lava album Devil Without a Cause have as much hip-hop in them as they do rock.
But inaccurate name or not, there's no denying these are the best of times for Detroit's genre-hopping favorite son, Kid Rock.
After years of building a Midwest fan base, Devil - Kid's 1998 Atlantic debut following four indie releases beginning in 1990 - has cracked the top 10 and is fast approaching double-platinum status in the U.S.
The songs "I Am the Bulldog" and "Bawitdaba" have scratched their way onto radio playlists from coast to coast.
And his recent road schedule has included performing with his longtime band Twisted Brown Trucker before hundreds of thousands at Woodstock '99 last July and a co-headlining tour with fellow genre-benders Limp Bizkit.
Kid Rock, who runs his own Top Dog imprint, attributes much of his success to his instinctual business acumen, not to mention his love for many types of music.
"When I started my own record company, I learned how this business works," he says. "I studied all the great independent labels. And I taught myself how to play several instruments. My musical influences are all over the map: everyone from Bob Seger to LL Cool J."
Kid Rock also counts Nashville pioneers like Hank Williams and George Jones as influences, and he plans to release a country-flavored EP in late 1999 or early 2000.