GLENN: I just played this song just a few minutes ago and I want to hear just a bit of it again. And there's a reason for it.
GLENN: John Rich from Big & Rich sent this to me. It's just been released nationwide and John is on the phone. Mr. John Rich, how are you, sir?
RICH: I'm good, Glenn, how are you doing?
GLENN: Oh, blood's shooting out of my eyes and thank god somebody else has enough blood left in their system to do something about it.
RICH: Let me tell you something. A couple of weeks ago I was sitting in my house in Nashville watching the news and I became so disgusted and outraged at what I was seeing that this bailout money was going to these guys who had run their companies into the ground and then here's this joker getting on his private jet and flying out of town laughing at me and every other taxpayer in the country, I mean laughing like it's some type -- like he really pulled a really cool trick, man. He got to run the company into the ground and still get his bonus and still take his private jet right back to wherever it was he came from. So I had two choices. I could throw my fist through the television or I could pick up a blank sheet of paper and a pencil and start writing a song. So I chose the latter of the two and I wrote that song, "Shutting Detroit Down.
GLENN: I have to tell you, John, I said to somebody just on Friday, I thank God every day I have this job because I feel like I have a voice. Most people don't have that to do. They can't go and do what I do. They can't do what I just did. And I just think there is a bubbling cauldron of trouble because people do feel it. This Chris Dodd thing or Charlie Rangel not paying his taxes or Timothy Geithner going to be running the IRS and yet he cheated on his taxes and they just said, "No problem." And now we have Tom Daschle not paying his taxes. How do you expect, do you think people to take this?
Last time I checked, when I don't pay my taxes, I got the IRS so far down my throat, that's all I can think about until we get straight. I've got friends that owed the IRS $300 or $400 that the IRS came after. It boggles my mind. It makes you wonder, well, who exactly is running the IRS and why exactly are they letting these particular people get away with such nonsense like that.
GLENN: We now know who's running the IRS, a guy who cheats on his taxes.
RICH: There you go.
GLENN: John, I don't know what you have planned this week. Can I get you to come into New York and perform this on the TV for us this week?
RICH: Possibly. I'm out here on the West Coast. Here's what happened, Glenn.
GLENN: What is -- wait, wait. What is wrong with you? You're where?
RICH: I'm on the West Coast.
GLENN: Again, why? Are you --
RICH: There's a lot of country radio stations, a lot of country music fans, there really are.
GLENN: Let me tell you, in every concert you give, you need to say, "By the way, I'm not saying you should move into the center of the country but I'm not not saying it, either."
RICH: Well, you know, here's the interesting trick because you are on radio and television, you get a lot of e-mails and stuff like that from people and hear what's going on. I'm actually on a tour bus. In the past five weeks, Glenn, I've hit over 70 cities from South Florida to New Hampshire all the way through the Mid-west, now on the West Coast playing this song Shutting Detroit Down for all these stations. So I actually see these people in person. It is unbelievable the amount of agony that these people are in out here and even more than that, I'm talking infuriated. I mean like people wanting a glue car march in Washington which I think is exactly what should happen. You want to call -- you think the Million Man March was a big deal? How about a blue car march on Washington? How about we put about 5 million farmers, schoolteachers, truckdrivers and autoworkers up in their backyard and see how they like it.
GLENN: I tell you, it is the same thing. I did 65 cities in the month of December and I felt the same -- I've never -- how long have you been touring in your life, John? How long have you been traveling around the country?
RICH: I turned 35 January 7th and I got on a tour bus when I was 19 years old for 16 years.
GLENN: Have you ever seen this country like it is today? I have never seen this country and the people of this country so angry with their own government. And it's not a Republican/Democrat thing. This is a politician/people thing.
RICH: This is an American thing. We are being absolutely laughed at, belittled, disrespected to such a degree, I'm telling you they don't even know -- that's why when I wrote in the song, I said here in the real world they're shutting Detroit down because they don't live in the real world.
RICH: Those people up there, passing the law to send billions and billions of dollars to people just going to mishandle it again, when's the last time they had to wonder what they were going to eat next week. When's the last time they had to decide, "Am I going to put gas in the car or food on the table." That is the decisions people are making every single day across this country. And then to turn on your television and see this jackass getting in his jet or spending one point some odd million dollars decorating his office with this $30,000 toilet, they should be taken out in the schoolyard and have their lights punched out as far as I'm concerned and this song is my way of doing that.
GLENN: Well, I love it, John, an we'll talk again. Let's see when we can get you in the studio to perform this.
GLENN: I'll be there as soon as I can, Glenn. I appreciate the opportunity. I love listening to you, man. You say it like it is.
GLENN: I appreciate it, John. John Rich, Shutting Detroit Down is the name of the song and it is right on the money.