Only God Knows Why

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"Only God Knows Why"
Only God Knows Why.jpg
Single by Kid Rock
from the album Devil Without a Cause
Released October 9, 1999
Recorded Temper Mill Studios, Detroit, Michigan
Genre Country[1]
Length 5:27 (album version)
4:17 (radio edit)
Label Atlantic
Songwriter(s) RJ Ritchie, Matt Shafer, John Travis
Producer(s) Kid Rock with John Travis
Kid Rock singles chronology
"Only God Knows Why"
"Wasting Time"

"Only God Knows Why"
"Wasting Time"

"Only God Knows Why" is a song by American musician Kid Rock. It was recorded in 1998 for his album Devil Without a Cause, on which it features as the eleventh track. The song was the first recorded ballad on record by Kid Rock. It was a weary road ballad in which the first four lines were written while he was in jail after a bar fight after signing to Atlantic Records in 1997. It is notable for its heavy use of Auto-Tune.

The song was released as a single in 1999 and peaked at number 19 on the Billboard Hot 100,[2] eventually ranking at number 67 on the Billboard Year-End Hot 100 for 2000.[3] VH1 named it the 19th greatest power ballad in 2002.[4] Outlaw country singer David Allan Coe released a live cover version on his release Live at Billy Bob's in 2003.

Music video[edit]

The music video is a montage of stage performances, his off time during touring, wandering the streets of and riding the streetcars in New Orleans and his performance at Woodstock 1999. The most infamous scenes are him getting hit with a full wine bottle in the head onstage, along with an overzealous fan following him to his car with security holding him back. His band, mother, father, and son are featured (during the part he sings "I watch my youngest son and it helps to pass the time"). There are cameos by other stars like Mark McGrath of Sugar Ray, Gibby Haynes of Butthole Surfers and Hank Williams, Jr. whose appearance comes after Kid Rock appeared in his "Naked Women and Beer" video.

There is a censored version, with the buttocks of a stripper blurred out while Kid Rock is signing it and when he makes a gun gesture which is blurred out.

Track listing[edit]

CD single
  1. "Only God Knows Why" (Radio Edit)
  2. "Only God Knows Why" (German Radio Edit)
  3. "Wasting Time" (Live)


  • Kid Rock – vocals, acoustic guitar
  • Kenny Olson – lead guitar
  • Bobby East – slide guitar
  • Jimmie Bones – piano,organ
  • Stephanie Eulinberg – drums, percussion



  1. ^ D'Angelo, Joe. "Nu Metal Meltdown (Page 3)". MTV. Archived from the original on February 1, 2003. Retrieved February 4, 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Kid Rock Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved February 4, 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Billboard Top 100 - 2000". Retrieved 2010-08-31.
  4. ^ "25 Greatest Power Ballads". The Greatest. May 23, 2003. VH1.
  5. ^ " – Kid Rock Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH. Retrieved February 4, 2018.
  6. ^ "Kid Rock Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved February 4, 2018.
  7. ^ "Kid Rock Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved February 4, 2018.
  8. ^ "Kid Rock Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved February 4, 2018.
  9. ^ "Kid Rock Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved February 4, 2018.

External links[edit]