Say what you will about Kid Rock, but the 40-year-old Detroit rapper/rocker -- who still lives in Michigan -- is one of the few celebs out there who seems to have stayed true to his roots and keeps it real. In the May issue of Esquire, Kid Rock (aka Bob Ritchie) reveals a few of the lessons he's learned thus far in life, as well as why he's not a fan of the stage name he chose for himself as a teen.

"It's the worst name in the world," he laughs. "The only person that had a dumber name than me was the Fresh Prince. Hey, it sounded like a cool rap name when I was sixteen. But it stuck, and now it's me. I'll be an 80-year-old man -- 'call me the Kid.'"

The "Born Free" singer has also come to the realization that life is too short to waste your time hanging out with losers. "Surround yourself with good people," he advises. "Whether they're the best or not, people are capable of learning if they've got good hearts and they're good souls."

He imparted these words of wisdom at his alma mater, Romeo High School in Romeo, Michigan, on Wednesday, where he made a surprise appearance at the school's pep assembly. "Be true to yourself," he told the kids. "Be who you are in your heart. Don't hang out with idiots. If you surround yourself with good people, you'll go far. If you start hanging out with knuckleheads, you'll be right in the knucklehead section the rest of your life."