Colt Ford recruited some big collaborations for his sixth record Love Hope Faith. The infamous country rapper recruited Brad Paisley, Toby Keith and more for the new album, due May 5.
The album kicks off by featuring viral Internet star Taylor Ray Holbrook. But that's just the beginning. Charles Kelley (of Lady Antebellum) and his brother Josh Kelley sing on a song called "Young Americans." Tyler Farr joins Ford on "My Truck," while Brad Paisley sings on "Lookin' For A Hand Out."
Oh, and then you've got Toby Keith ("Time Flies") and former The Voice star Javier Colon ("No Rest"). Male duo Waterloo Revival (who signed to Toby Keith's label) also appear. Heck, even Texan Granger Smith joins Colt Ford on the last track, "Keepin' It Real." Oh, and 90s alt-rockers Lit.
Features come standard with Ford, but they litter the 13-track album. And these are certainly the biggest names and most features in Ford's career.
In addition to announcing the album, Ford announced a 22-date tour kicking off on Feb. 24. The select dates extend from February through September and hit up many of the smaller cities where Ford built loyal followings.
Ford also surprised much of his audience with Love Hope Faith's first single, "4 Lane Gone."
The tune, which ironically doesn't feature any guests, sees Ford singing throughout the whole song. That's a first for somebody who made their name as a rapper in country music.
But though Ford always existed on the fringes of country music, his influence extends deep into mainstream radio. Along with Brantley Gilbert, Ford brought hip hop (or "hick hop") to mainstream radio. He wrote Jason Aldean's smash hit "Dirt Road Anthem." He also wrote Gilbert's breakthrough hit "Country Must Be Country Wide."
Despite the controversial nature of Ford's brand of country, new album Love Hope Faith perhaps indicates the rest of the country world embracing his sound. Or at the very least, embracing his hustle.