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 the companies Starbucks and Monsanto. The piece comes from the concept album The Monsanto Years, which primarily criticizes the company Monsanto.

About the Song[edit]

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

It refers to the lawsuit by Monsanto against Vermont due to the state's attempt at passing a GMO labeling law.[3] The song also references "the poison tide of Monsanto" and a farmer who signs a GMO deal when 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."[4][5]

In a brief review of the song, Stefan Schmidt in The National Singles Round-Up also remarked that song did not hold back against critiquing Starbucks and Monsanto and suggested that Young hadn't lost his appetite for tackling political issues.[6]

As of the 31st of May 2015, the song was also rewarded with the title "Video of the Week" on the Food Consumer website.[7]


Young also introduced an acoustic version of the song in Maui while performing at "OUTGROW Monsanto", a festival held to protest Monsanto's business practices in Hawaii.[8]

Moreover, the song was also featured in Young's July and October 2015 tours, for which Promise of the Real served as his backing band.[9]