New Theme Debuts as We Lovingly Retire Rush’s My City Was Gone

19 May 2022

CLAY: Welcome back in hour number 3, Clay Travis, Buck Sexton show. We appreciate all of you hanging out with us.

(My City Was Gone)

CLAY: So, as you listen to the music that is bringing us back here at the top of the hour, a lot you have the same reaction that we have had over the years. For decades, Rush’s theme song has reminded everyone out there truth and clarity on the way. It’s an iconic song forever that’s gonna be attached to Rush Limbaugh and everything that he represented.

As we come up on the one-year anniversary of this show, these song rights are expiring and we wanted to take this time, Buck — and we talked a lot about this behind the scenes as this song’s rights are expiring — we wanted to take the time to find a song for this show that could be as iconic and irreplaceable in the future, and also that would feature a band that really loves and respects what our political beliefs are, because as a lot of you out there know, there are a lot of bands that do not respect what we believe in every day. And so we spent a lot of time on this, Buck.

BUCK: And for us, this is really like retiring the jersey in sports. Because Rush’s theme song is forever attached to his memory, everything he built, and we deeply honor that, his legacy. And that song is a part of his legacy, of course. So with all of that in mind and given, as we said, that the song rights are expiring soon, we found this amazing band. Clay is actually friends with the individuals in this band: Lit. You may know the band Lit. The song we’ve landed on is called My Own Worst Enemy. It has tens of millions of YouTube plays. There are hundreds and hundreds of rock stations that were playing it when it first came out in 1999, which I will say is a great year.

CLAY: A phenomenal year, maybe greatest year of all time.

BUCK: And Clay, the really great thing, it’s rare to find a rock band that honestly doesn’t have the politics of a bunch of evil commies no matter how good the music may be. These guys are patriots, they love America, you know this, they listened to the show.

CLAY: You, yeah, I know them personally, and so I’ll give you a story. They live here in Nashville. The band is Lit. Again, the song is My Own Worst Enemy. If you are a fan at all of 1990s era music, this is one of the most iconic songs that came out of the nineties. I’ve met these guys many times over the years here in Nashville and actually I was over at their house once and I walked in and they had a college football game on. Utah was playing. We’re number one in Salt Lake City; so, shout-out to the Utes.

I thought that was interesting. I watch every college football game, but they had Utah on. And I walked in and Jeremy Popoff, who is one of the members of the band, his son was a student manager for the Utah Utes football game so I got to know the family really well in fact their son was one of the interns for OutKick and I’ve gotten to know them so well and we were making this decision, Buck, was really important to me that we feature music from people who respect and love and have the same political beliefs as us.

These guys moved to Tennessee from California because they were so frustrated with the direction that California politics had gone (laughing), and they are going to be longtime listeners of this show. They loved Rush. And when we had this conversation with them, Buck, I mean you should have seen their faces and how excited they were to be able to bring their music to this audience and connect their brand and their spirit with the spirit and brand of the greatest radio show audience that has ever existed in American history.

So we spent a lot of time on this. When they told us this song was expiring, that the contract was running out, that they wanted to make sure that it was forever iconic and connected to Rush, that we could find our own version of this — and I’m confident that you guys are going to like it in the same way My City Was Gone defined Rush. Again, I think your analogy is a good one, Buck, of retiring the jersey. We’ll always be proud of our affiliation with Rush and that theme song. But we hope that this new song will also be a big part of our listening family. I think we’re gonna debut it on Monday.

CLAY: It may take some time for people to get used to, but we want to know we wanted to directly address this with you instead of just flipping a switch and you guys are like, “What in the world happened?”

BUCK: We live every day on this show to serve this audience, the audience that Rush built. And everything we do keeps in mind that legacy and all that he built over decades. So, we make decisions here with that as a lodestar, as a guiding point for us, and so with that in mind, we are retiring the jersey, so to speak, of a great song — a song, let’s be honest, that Rush made great, actually. I think that’s fair to say. It is really associated with Rush more than anything else about that song.

And now we’re gonna be introducing folks to Lit, and we hope they’ll enjoy it. We want to hear from you, by the way. We serve you. We serve this audience every day. That’s why we’re here. And it’s an honor, honestly. It is a privilege, and I’ve said this before, and I think you can tell, Clay and I feel the same way. We really mean it. We’re lucky to be able to do this show every day. It’s a great blessing for all of us to be able to talk to all of you.

So, we want to hear from some of you. If you know Lit, if you’re excited about the prospect of a little bit of some nineties music being thrown in the mix here. You’ve already heard some nineties here and there. You know, we want to keep it just from an audio and music lover perspective, keep it fresh and moving and introduce you to new things in general. And so if you have any thoughts on this one, 800-282-2882.

We’d love to chat with you about it and hear what you think about it, and we know that it’s a transition, and for some of you it might take a little bit of getting used to. But we’re excited about it and it will be, I think, something that we’ll all look back on and say this is a fun thing. It’s a fun thing to get to have a relationship with this band this way and to have a sound that will be associated with us.

CLAY: In my neighborhood, Buck — I sent you this video — we’ve had a nineties tribute band come out and play here in Nashville. And the very first 1990s song that the tribute band played was My Own Worst Enemy. There’s several thousand people at this event. It was great, out here in Franklin, and I took video of it. And actually in downtown Franklin probably a couple months ago I was at a charity event.

And Lit came and played My Own Worst Enemy, and the entire place just went crazy. So I know everybody’s got different musical interests and different musical tastes, and when you came of age you may think is the greatest music of all time regardless of when you came of age. So, for Buck and me, the nineties are basically the best era that ever existed.

BUCK: And, you know, we did a little testing. I tried to convince them maybe my a cappella rendition of the Macarena —

CLAY: (laughing)

BUCK: — would be a good way to go, that would really fire people up, but apparently, you know, that wasn’t really gonna make it quite as effective.

CLAY: I don’t think I told you this, Buck, but I am tone-deaf. I can’t… This may not surprise people because I don’t necessarily do great when it comes to pronunciations, but I was in chorus in high school, and I was so tone-deaf in terms of being able to sing that the chorus teacher said, you mouth the words — I’ve never heard of a chorus teacher doing this before. He stood in front of the basses ’til he could find out who was messing up the pitch, and he said, “You have a good speaking voice.” (laughs)

He said, “You will announce from now on in chorus.” You had to take chorus. You had to take an art to graduate, and mine was chorus. He said, “From now on you will announce the songs that we sing,” but you will actually just mouth the words. We don’t need… You’ve ever heard of anybody being told that who’s a member of a choral group, “You announce. You have a good voice, good speaking voice. You could announce what we’re going to sing, but you can no longer sing.”

BUCK: This reminds me of when I was for a short period of time trying to play ice hockey in the third grade and I told the counselor, the coach that my helmet was too small for my huge head, and he’s like, “No, it’s not,” and he put it on my head, and he goes (laughing), “Yeah, no, it is too small.” So, I had to sit on the side ’cause of my big-ass head wouldn’t fit into the helmet.

CLAY: (laughing) You could have been the next Mark Messier. His helmet was a monster.

BUCK: I needed a different helmet and I never actually even got it and my ice hockey career didn’t last for long. I think it lasted about three weeks. So, yeah, man we’ve all got those memories, Clay.

CLAY: I just have never heard of anybody being told that. You know, they always say like anybody can get better. I’ve never heard of a chorus teacher, Mr. Scandrick, God rest his soul, at Martin Luther King Magnet in Nashville, there’s a lot of witnesses, stopped right in front of me. You could just see his eyes. He was so disappointed, Buck, that the choral group and the basses when he was standing in front of them were not in unison singing well. But I did do a really good job announcing all those songs that year. So we all have our benefits, we all have our talents. But in all seriousness, I’m telling you, the Lit guys are super excited. And we will do an event — I don’t know when it will be — at some point.

BUCK: I was gonna say, we got get them to show up and do live stuff for us.

CLAY: In Nashville, we’re talking about it. You know what we could do I need to text them and see what their schedule is like around the midterm ’cause we’re doing our event in Nashville to celebrate what should be a red tide for the midterms. We need to get the guys to show up and sing My Own Worst Enemy for that event. That would be pretty bad ass. I need to see what their schedule is.

BUCK: I am feeling better and better because we gotta tell you what’s going on and what the challenges are in the country and, look, the Biden administration in charge. So there’s a lot of stuff that’s messed up right now. There’s no question about it. But we are planning a midterm election party, not a call in, “Oh, this state, that.” We’ll let other people do that. They can sit there at the decision desk or whatever and they can make their call.

We’re gonna be rocking out and maybe really rocking out because it is looking like it will at least be a restoration of sanity in the November election. I don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves, but it’s looking pretty good right now and so we could have Lit play there. I mean, honestly, I don’t know if there is a band that can transport you to the late nineties faster with a song. I mean, you’re right up there. It’s iconic in the way that like Bitter Sweet Symphony and some of those other very nineties songs.

CLAY: That was a great song too. We’ll play it for you if it’s not already cued up. I hope it is. We’ll see if we can play it for you coming out of the next break as we come in for the next segment, if you guys haven’t yet heard or not exactly sure of what that song sounds like. It’s a choral, right, that you will hear as we start each of the hours going forward, I believe on Monday. So just want to let you know where it was coming from, why it was happening, the background there, and we continue to thank you guys for supporting the show as we continue to grow and continue to fight the battles that Rush would be fighting himself if he were still with us today.


(My Own Worst Enemy)

BUCK: There it is, Lit, My Own Worst Enemy. You’re hearing it, you’re gonna be hearing more of it. We so appreciate all of you listening to us every day and in general want to hear from you, of course. We opened up the lines, and it is a tsunami of phone calls, by the way, which we were expecting. And here is Blake in Colorado. Blake, Lit, what do you think?

CALLER: Hey, I love it! I’m a big fan of the show. I follow Clay actually from Fox Sports Radio, and I loved him on there, especially during the covid years, and I was thinking that you guys were thinking about maybe Kid Rock possibly too.

CLAY: We did.

BUCK: We did, yeah.

CLAY: We discussed Kid Rock. We kicked around — and just the instrumental that you hear there — and for everybody out there, some people don’t pay that much attention to music. Other people pay a lot of attention to it. It’s the open of each hour. So, you’ll hear that instrumental that you just heard to open hour 1, hour 2, and hour 3. So, we listened. I mean, Buck and I — (laughing) let’s be honest — are not super music people. But when this was expiring, we needed to come up with a new song. And so they had a bunch of different suggestions, and what we wanted to make sure was that we were not featuring someone who would not like our show.

BUCK: We’re never getting… I mean, just think about this, you know, even when Trump would play at these arenas, the Rolling Stones —

CLAY: They’d demand he not do it.

BUCK: — they would send this annoying letter, “Don’t use that song.” So, we just said, “No, no, we’re only talking to bands that are cool with us, support our values and, quite honestly, respect this audience,” right?

CLAY: Yeah.

BUCK: They’re one of you. Lit is one of you in terms of their view of America. So, that was a huge, huge win for us in that regard. Blake, we’re glad you like it, good to hear it. Todd in his self-described freedom bunker in Nebraska. Hey, Todd.

CALLER: Hey, Buck, it’s so good to hear you again. Clay, hello as well.

BUCK: Thank you.

CALLER: You know, it is a tough day. Transitions are hard, and they’re inevitable, though. So I want to start just by saying quickly, mega dittos to all of us that have listened to Rush and miss him — I miss him every day — and prayers for Kathryn. We think of you and we love you and our hearts are always with you. I’ve been a Rush listener since ’92. Buck, I’ve been listening to you for years. I’m not an OSS member, but pretty close.

BUCK: Thank you.

CLAY: I’m just so sad and happy at the same time. When Rush passed away, Buck, I was clearly torn up, but very happy — couldn’t been more happy — to learn that you were gonna be in the replacement slot along with Clay. And so 20 minutes ago when the song came on, My City Was Gone, I’m here with my bass over my shoulder playing along, dancing with my closest friend in the world, as we always do, get up and dance. And so very sad to hear that news.

But at the same time, guys, I saw Lit in concert when I lived in Kansas City in 2000. Outdoor concert in the middle of summer, one of the greatest nights. The stars came out. So what an excellent selection to continue with and to both of you and all the Rush listeners across America want to say and around the world: Love you, Rush — and to you, too, keep up the fight, we listen every day, three hours every day. Podcast subscriber and end with, “Shields high!”

BUCK: “Shields high!” Todd. Thank you so much. I’ll have to explain that one at some point, too, maybe start working that one into the show. OSS, Clay, is the Office of Strategic Services.

CLAY: Yeah.

BUCK: Listeners, when I started the show that was digital, I was digital first. Was a radio stream on on Saturdays for three hours, original Saturday squad was what they called it so that’s what he’s referring to there. We got more calls, people calling in say they love Lit and they want to weigh in, and other folks I’m sure are gonna be calling in too.


BUCK: Steven in Allentown, Pennsylvania, has got some thoughts. What’s up, Steven?

CALLER: Clay and Buck, shields high.

BUCK: Shields high, sir.

CALLER: I gotta say I miss Rush, but if there was ever any dynamic duo that you could — can continue on with the good work for the… God bless you both. You’re doing it. You’re doing a bang-up job too.

BUCK: Thank you.

CLAY: We appreciate it. We appreciate all of you.

BUCK: What do you think of the band?

CALLER: You know what? I love that. And I gotta say, it wasn’t easy for me at first because I grew up in Ohio, and Chrissie Hynde and The Pretenders, when I would hear that come on? I played high school football at Hoover High in North Canton, Ohio, and I always identified, even though I live in Pennsylvania now, I always identified that to a time in my life. You know, you only get one.

CLAY: Yeah, thank you for the call. I think a lot of people… You know, it’s gonna be partly generational and Buck and I are a little bit younger and that was a song that to us evokes an era that we thought was a pretty good one. I just love, in this era, where musicians are constantly saying, “If you don’t share my politics I don’t want you to share my music.” We wanted to make sure that we found somebody who fit the political moment. Randy in I think it’s Maxwell, Nebraska.

BUCK: Randy! Hey.

CALLER: It’s an honor to be on.

CLAY: We appreciate you.

CALLER: I’m a lifelong Democrat but I enjoy the show.

BUCK: All righty. We’ll take it.

CALLER: (laughing) Lit is great. You could have went with your bumper music… Forgive me. I’m dealing with a bout of covid, and that’s no joke. But, anyway, you could have went with your bumper music of Hot Chocolate, but Lit is great. You could have went with Blink-182 or Goldfinger, but Lit is great. You know, The Tonight Show was an iconic theme with Johnny Carson, that theme song for like 25, 30 years and then when it changed to Jay Leno, he changed the music. So The Pretenders can go to rest with Rush.

CLAY: Well, thank you, by the way. Look, we could have come on at the very start and said, “We demand everything about the show change.” Buck and I did not in any way believe that that was appropriate. So, a full year of honoring Rush’s legacy by continuing to play his theme music — and I think Buck’s analogy is a good one of retiring the jersey. I mean this is a song that will forever be connected to Rush.

And we honor his legacy every day by fighting the battles that he would still be fighting if he were here. And I think he would be happy that we have selected a band that was a big fan of his. They loved listening to the show, and Buck and I wanted to make that certain when we picked a new song that it would be somebody who honored the legacy of Rush and of this audience and of this show.

BUCK: Yeah, they were Rush fans —

CLAY: Yes.

BUCK: — as well as people that listened to this show now. So we managed to find a band with both, which was pretty amazing, when you think about how far left most of the entertainment media and music world is. So we’re really fortunate; we’re excited about it. We appreciate all of you giving us, first of all, this whole year of listening. I am gonna go rest my voice, Clay is gonna go take care of the family, and we will be back with you tomorrow ready to rock.

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