A Rock Star Bucks a Coffee Shop

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"A Rock Star Bucks a Coffee Shop"
Song by Neil Young & Promise of the Real
from the album The Monsanto Years
LanguageEnglish language
Recorded USA
LabelReprise Records
Songwriter(s)Neil Young
Producer(s)Neil Young & John Hanlon

"A Rock Star Bucks a Coffee Shop" is a song recorded by Neil Young and Promise of the Real. It is a protest song aimed at Starbucks and Monsanto, and comes from The Monsanto Years, a concept album criticizing Monsanto.

About the song[edit]

The song was released as a single in May 2015, the first from the album The Monsanto Years.[1][2]

The song refers to the lawsuit by Monsanto against Vermont because of the state's attempt to pass a GMO labeling law.[3] It also mentions "the poison tide of Monsanto" and a farmer who signs a GMO deal.[4] Young sings, "I want a cup of coffee but I don't want a GMO. I'd like to start my day off without helping Monsanto."[5][6]

In a brief review of the song, Stefan Schmidt in The National Singles Round-Up said the song pulled no punches in attacking Starbucks and Monsanto. Schmidt suggested that Young hadn't lost his appetite for tackling political issues.[7]

As of 31 May 2015, the song was Video of the week on the Food Consumer website.[8]


Young introduced an acoustic version of the song in Maui, performing at "OUTGROW Monsanto", a festival held to protest Monsanto's business practices in Hawaii.[9]

The song was featured in Young's July and October 2015 tours, for which Promise of the Real served as his backing band.[10]