Now, Nelly is setting the record straight on what he really has in mind for his next project. The rapper explained to Rolling Stone.
“It got kinda twisted. It’s not actually country, so to speak. I love country music. I respect country music so much that I would never think that I can sit down and just as easy do a country album. That’s not it. That’s just like some country artist saying, ‘Hell, I’m just gonna do a rap album.’ What I will say is that, I’m tryna come up with an idea of doing an EP that crosses all boundaries, all genres and it may feature different country artists. But if you look at country music now it’s broadened up so much.”
Instead of focusing on a country-centric album, Nelly says he wants to experiment with many types of genres for his next release.
“That is something I kinda kicked around as far as the EP, kinda coming up with different songs and different music in a field that I think may appeal to more of a pop-country, pop-R&B, hip-hop, country hip-hop [laughs] type of vibe. But never a ‘country album,’ not like that. I respect country music to the utmost, I never think it’s just that easy. Never.”
Aside from his own work with Florida Georgia Line and Tim McGraw, Nelly has an obvious respect for country and the genre’s roots. He even revealed that he has a soft spot for a few old-school country and Southern Rock hits, including Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama”.
“My father loved ‘The Gambler,’ he liked old Kenny Rogers. Everything him and Mrs. Dolly Parton were able to do, you know in those days. I mean it’s not like country music was my influence…but it gave me an appreciation for it.”