On the official Howard Stern Show website, I managed to dig up a reference to a 2013 interview that potential Michigan U.S. Senate candidate Kid Rock, whose real name is Robert Ritchie, gave to Stern, which included a reference to Kid Rock’s “relaxed approach to a very tense word”:
...on the Stern Show, Lisa G gets called out by a not so mysterious caller, and Ronnie the Limo Driver will not bow down to science. Then Howard welcomes in Kid Rock, who talks about his new fan friendly tour, his unflattering view of Justin Bieber, and his relaxed approach to a very tense word. Lastly, Matt Lauer discusses his memorable interviews with Tom Cruise and Hillary Clinton, Katie Couric's place in his heart...
Although I’ve been unable to find actual audio or video of the portion of the interview in question, a BET report about the interview in question indicates that the “very tense word” referenced on the Stern website is a six-letter word beginning with the letter N and having a very racist connotation:
Kid Rock considers the N-word to be harmless slang and uses it all the time, the Michigan rocker revealed to Howard Stern on his radio program last week.
The "Bawitdaba" singer claims he and his friends, who consider the racially-charged term "harmless," feel they are "mimicking popular culture" when they use the word. "We're all having a good time, cuttin' it up, like when rappers take things too far," he says to Stern.
When the shock jock asked whether he felt it was appropriate to use the word around his biracial son, who is half Black, Kid answered, "why not?"
The BET report was dated June 24, 2013; the Stern episode in question featuring Kid Rock aired five days earlier, on June 19, 2013. The Stern show’s website indicates that the episode after the episode in question aired on June 24, 2013, and the Stern show’s website did not list Kid Rock as a guest on that episode, so circumstantial evidence suggests that the episode that BET reported on was the June 19, 2013 episode.
The N-word is racist, period. It doesn’t matter if you’re black, white, or of any other race, color, and/or ethnicity, using the N-word is a racist term that demonizes black people. Even Lee Atwater, himself a racist and a notoriously ruthless Republican political operative who was behind a racist smear campaign against Michael Dukakis in the 1988 presidential election, understood how racist the N-word is, and I’m not defending Atwater by anyone’s imagination.
Kid Rock would be a disgrace to Michigan if elected to the U.S. Senate. Oh, and if you want my thoughts about Kid Rock’s music career, he’s only had one good song, and that’s because Sheryl Crow carried a tune that Kid Rock couldn’t. Oh, and Crow isn’t exactly a fan of Kid Rock’s political ambitions.