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I’ve told the story so many times people are probably sick of hearing it. The story is how Kid Rock donated to my book campaign, received my original Niagara “Hot Box #1” painting as a gift, and decided to make it the cover art for his “First Kiss” album. If you want all the details, just click here and you can read how it all came to be.

Last night, my cousin Pete & his wife Angela picked me up and we headed out to Pine Knob, I still can’t say DTE Energy Music Theatre, to check out show number two of the 10 nights of Kid Rock’s record breaking home stand.

Pete, Angela & Your Humble Author

Pete & Angela are big Kid Rock fans. They have seen him many times over the years. My cousin says he remembers seeing Bob the first time in the transition days when Kid Rock was starting to put more rock into the shows back at Lipsticks, this low rent place on the east side on Groesbeck near 16 Mile. So, it was good to go along with folks who were in the spirit and having fun. But, even they were amazed at the amount of people that had a few too many at the show. For example, one guy sitting on the lawn near us was resting on a blanket when he just turned his head and, well, I think you get the rest. His friends looked on in horror. I told them they should check on him because “you know, John Bonham died like that.” Too much fun for that guy… and that was before Bob even hit the stage.

A Niagara “Hot Box” Festival!

Heading into the show I could see Niagara’s art everywhere. When one look at the merch table and I saw the painting on shirts, bandanas, an afghan, and even a little pin featuring a flashing light embedded in the hot from the cigarette.

The show started with a roots band, sadly, I didn’t get to see them. But, Foreigner wasn’t a bad opening act. They sounded tight, and I kept laughing at the fact that when they played “Dirty White Boy” all I could think of was Aqua Teen Hunger Force.

KR Rocking the Knob! 

After a song behind this front drop of a $20 bill, Kid Rock opened with “First Kiss” and projected on the framed screen behind him was the Niagara image. It had been animated a bit. So, it looked like it was puckering as smoke rose from the hot in the cigarette.

Your Humble Author with Beers!

All of these little things are really fun for me because I know the story. I know how it all came to be. I know about that painting, the history behind it, and how this whole story came together. I know why Bob selected it based on our interview in December. Part of the interview is in the book.

My hope at the show was being able to meet with Bob, give him a copy of the Orbit book he helped fund, and thank him personally. But, before the recent Detroit shows he has been battling a vocal problem that caused him to cancel earlier shows out of state. He texted me that he was not doing any meet up at this point, not talking with folks except on stage. I except it will happen soon.

Overall, it was a great night to lose my Kid Rock live show virginity with two of my favorite people. They really helped to make the night a little something extra. It’s great when you go to something with folks who are genuine fans and can give you all the reasons why they dig it. Just like my other friends had said, Kid Rock puts on a hell of a show – BELIEVE IT!