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Ted NugentTed Nugent (born December 13, 1948 aka the Nuge) is an American guitarist from Detroit, Michigan, originally gaining fame as a member of the Amboy Dukes. Later, he became quite controversial for his right-wing beliefs and his anti-drug and anti-alcohol stance, making him virtually unique among professional musicians.
The Amboy Dukes' second single was "Journey to the Center of the Mind", which Nugent claimed he didn't know was about drug use. The Amboy Dukes (1967), Journey to the Center of the Mind (1968) and Migration (1969) sold moderately well, establishing a fan base for Nugent and the other Amboy Dukes. Personnel changes nearly wrecked the band, which became known as Ted Nugent & the Amboy Dukes. Though the group's studio recordings rarely sold well, the band was an exciting live group and managed to keep a large following.
Ted Nugent dropped the band name and signed to Epic Records in 1975, with Derek St. Holmes (guitar, vocals), Rob Grange (bass) and Cliff Davies (drums) as his back-up. Ted Nugent'\' was his first solo release; the album was a success among the heavy metal community. Personnel problems led to St. Holmes' departure from the band before the recording of Free For All (1976), with Meat Loaf, then unknown, replacing him. St. Holmes returned for Cat Scratch Fever (1977); the album was another hit, as was the titular single. Nugent had begun dressing as a caveman for live shows, which were growing more and more extravagant. Double Live Gonzo'' (1978) increased his superstardom even further, though personality and financial problems continued to drive band members away.
During the 1980s, Nugent released a series of generally ignored albums. Near the end of the decade, however, Nugent joined a supergroup, Damn Yankees, with Jack Blades (bass, vocals, formerly of Night Ranger), Tommy Shaw (guitar, vocals, formerly of Styx) and Michael Cartellone (drums). Damn Yankees (1990) was a hit, but the group was unable to sustain any momentum.
Returning to his solo career, Nugent released Spirit of the Wild, his best reviewed album in quite some time. A series of archival releases came out in the 1990s, keeping Nugent's name in the national consciousness; he also began hosting a radio show in Detroit and owns several hunting-related businesses.
An avid hunter, Ted Nugent was a frequent visitor to Canada until the government of Ontario cancelled the spring black bear hunt in 1999. Upset that he could no participate in the hunt, Nugent vowed to never set foot again in what he described as "an idiotic country".
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