Nelly has the ‘utmost respect’ for country music, but it’s not his style.
The 40-year-old hip hop star had been rumoured to be working on a new record in the genre.
However, he now says the interview in Billboard magazine back in April (15) in which talent manager J. Erving appeared to reveal Nelly’s change in direction was ‘misconstrued’.
Despite that, Nelly insists he loves country music as a whole, but knows he is not the right person to experiment with the sound.
‘We talked about doing an EP that went across all boundaries and being a different vibe,’ Nelly told Entertainment Weekly magazine. ‘I love country music. I respect it to the utmost. But there’s nothing in the world that makes me think I can do a country album. That’s like Tim McGraw waking up like, ‘Yo, I’m gonna do a rap album.’ ‘
Nelly has experience in the genre, having worked with Tim McGraw on his track Over and Over and contributed vocals to Florida Georgia Line’s Cruise.
And the star said while he isn’t moving entirely into country music, he will be taking inspiration from the style, among others, for his new record.
‘What I think I can do is do something in the vein that can go across and fulfill different formats of music, country being one of them,’ he said. ‘I may do an EP that features more than one country artist, so it may have a different vibe, but not a country album.’
Nelly’s upcoming record will be his first since he and Republic Records parted ways last year. He is now with the label RECORDS, founded by former Island Def Jam CEO Barry Weiss and SONGS president Ron Perry.
‘Talking to Ron and Barry, I think we came up with a situation that I think business-wise and creatively was something I wanted to try out,’ Nelly said. ‘It was different. I don’t know how to describe [the new album]. It’ll be along the lines of expanding what I like to say is hip-hop after-hours. Hip-hop is always going to be for the youth by the youth, but now it’s getting older. You have more people that are a little older but are still hip-hop fans.’
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