Last summer, when he saw that Tom Petty put out a good single and CD that radio snubbed, Mellencamp realized, "If they're not going to play [Petty's] song, they're not going to play mine."And this on how he sees America:
The star isn't fazed by the subsequent cries of "sellout." "The minute you sign with a record company, you've sold out," he asserts. Moreover, he says that "Chevy has been a much better record company for me than [my last label] Columbia Records ever was."
"The Americans" appears to tout the open-minded character of U.S. citizens. But Mellencamp - who was born in Indiana and still lives near Bloomington - says it's actually about "how we see ourselves, not how we are. I think that's an image that should be strived toward. If I had written about how we really are, it would have been negative. If [I was writing about] the Midwest, it would be, 'I'm narrow-minded and don't give a f- about other cultures.'"