Album: Evil Empire (1996)
Play Video


  • "Rodeo" refers to Rodeo Drive, a very upscale community in Los Angeles. The song is about how poor people need to direct their anger toward the upper class instead of killing themselves by destroying each other and their neighborhoods. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Tim - Pittsburgh, PA
  • The line, "We Hungry But Them Belly Full" refers to the title of a song by Bob Marley and the Wailers which laments the nutritional injustices of class society.
  • The line mentioning Fred Hampton is a reference to the Charismatic leader of the radical Black Panther Party. Hampton was killed in a controversial FBI raid on the Black Panther headquarters in Chicago. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bob - Tokyo, Japan, for above 2

Comments: 9

  • Truf from TxJust remember the end line. As all the superficial meanings said are true, the ending is what the real culprit to the problem is. People are upset because we all are wanting what we “can’t have” “ don’t have” the material goods that make anyone think they are poor because we don’t have. So we think it’s injustice. If we have this mentality then we are the only ones to blame. No one holds you down only yourself. “ make a move and plead the fifth cause you can’t plead the first” do something about it but don’t self incriminate by doing it stupid like rolling down rodeo with a shotgun. Real ambition should be set on creating something not acquiring something. “F--k the g-ride, I want the machines that are making them” g ride is the ultra status that is the ultra rich that is the private jets of the g6. So don’t look at this song as preaching injustice but putting it down by not giving into this notion that material goods or not having them is injustice. Real in justice is believing that lie and trapping ourselves.
  • Siena from GunterI want this album for my birthday&this song is amazing
  • Edward from Downey, Ca"Rolling down rodeo with a shotgun" sounds like he wants to put an end to all the continued discrimination that still goes on,especially in a so-called upper class areas like rodeo drive and bevely hills."These people ain't seen a brown skinned man since thier grandparents bought one" aounds like a continued segregation against black and browned skinned people, who are obviuosly looked down upon and chased off by white people who are ignorant .
  • Joey from North Barrington, IlI agree with Bert, the line is all too true.
  • Tat from Austin, TxI was told that Rodeo was a rich part of Californio and when zak refers to with a shot gun rolling down rown. Hes saying shoot the rich pricks and take the power back
  • Skylar from Tahlequah, Okone of the few racially fueled songs by RATM. about how anyone of dark complection be it, native american black mexican or a mix of them, is not a usual part of the upper class society
  • Chris from Las Vegas, United StatesSo now I'm rollin Down Rodeo with a Shotgun, these people ain't seen a brown skin man since their grandparents bought one. The message is pretty simply put I think.
  • Bert from Pueblo, Nm"Make a move and plead the fifth 'cause ya can't plead the first"
    Best freakin' line in any RATM song.
  • Tom from Northport, NyWhen they say "They ain't gonna send us campin' like they did my man Fred Hampton", Fred Hampton was one of the founders of the Black Panthers, who was killed in his apartment by Chicago Police
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Dave Alvin - "4th Of July"

Dave Alvin - "4th Of July"They're Playing My Song

When Dave recorded the first version of the song with his group the Blasters, producer Nick Lowe gave him some life-changing advice.

Lori McKenna

Lori McKennaSongwriter Interviews

Lori's songs have been recorded by Faith Hill and Sara Evans. She's performed on the CMAs and on Oprah. She also has five kids.

Eagles Lyrics Quiz

Eagles Lyrics QuizMusic Quiz

Lots of life lessons in these Eagles lyrics - can you match them to the correct song?

Steve Cropper (Booker T & the MG's, Blues Brothers)

Steve Cropper (Booker T & the MG's, Blues Brothers)Songwriter Interviews

Steve Cropper on the making of "In the Midnight Hour," the chicken-wire scene in The Blues Brothers, and his 2021 album, Fire It Up.

Experience Nirvana with Sub Pop Founder Bruce Pavitt

Experience Nirvana with Sub Pop Founder Bruce PavittSong Writing

The man who ran Nirvana's first label gets beyond the sensationalism (drugs, Courtney) to discuss their musical and cultural triumphs in the years before Nevermind.

Richie Wise (Kiss producer, Dust)

Richie Wise (Kiss producer, Dust)Songwriter Interviews

Richie talks about producing the first two Kiss albums, recording "Brother Louie," and the newfound appreciation of his rock band, Dust.