John Rich Stands Up For Detroit on New Solo Album

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A few years back, John Rich’s partner in Big & Rich, Big Kenny Alphin suffered a neck injury in a car crash with a drunk driver, which lead him to take a sabbatical from touring in 2008. John Rich used the time to revisit a solo career that he started in the late 90’s. Today, he releases Son of A Preacher Man, his second solo album, and first since Underneath the Same Moon. That album was recorded in 1999, five years before the first Big and Rich record.


A few years back, John Rich’s partner in Big & Rich, Big Kenny Alphin suffered a neck injury in a car crash with a drunk driver, which lead him to take a sabbatical from touring in 2008.

John Rich used the time to revisit a solo career that he started in the late 90’s. Today, he releases Son of A Preacher Man, his second solo album, and first since Underneath the Same Moon. That album was recorded in 1999, five years before the first Big and Rich record.

Similarly, a handful of tracks on Preacher Man were written a decade ago, Rich tells Billboard.com, and many deal with his religious upbringing.

The attention-grabbing first single, “Shuttin’ Detroit Down,” currently No. 13 on the Top Country Charts, features these lyrics:

In the real world their shuttin’ Detroit down/

While the boss man takes his bonus paid jets on out of town/

DC’s bailing out them bankers as the farmers auction ground/

Yeah, while there living up on Wall Street in that New York City town/

here in the real world their shuttin’ Detroit down.

“The reason I wrote the song was not politically motivated,” says Rich, who co-wrote the song with John Anderson. “It was written as an outraged American, outraged at the government for giving massive sums of our money to people that misused it. I think when you say, ‘His pension plan’s been cut in half and he can’t afford to die,’ that’s about as hard-core truth as it gets. People are feeling that way all over. As a tax-paying American I take offense to it. As a country songwriter, I wrote a song about it…and I used Detroit as the emblem for all hard-working Americans.”


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