Nelly On Leading Rap-Country Crossovers ‘People Are Evolving And Opening Their Minds Up’


Nelly On Leading Rap-Country Crossovers ‘People Are Evolving And Opening Their Minds Up’

While Lil Nas X has made history with his rap/country-crossover hit “Old Town Road” featuring Billy Ray Cyrus, let’s not forget rapper Nelly was one of the first to ever do it with his “Over and Over” collaboration with Tim McGraw in 2004.

Nelly said the unlikely collaboration came after he grew up listening to various types of music, including country.

“I love all music. I was brought up on all music. My daddy and my uncle loved Kenny Rogers, they loved Lionel Richie who did a lot of writing for Kenny Rogers. I heard a lot of music around me growing up… And when you grow up around inspirations like that, obviously you start creating and start thinking in different realms. And that’s all that was. I had an idea and I wanted to see if I could pull it off, and thankfully Tim McGraw saw the vision and he was like, ‘Yo this is dope.’ And he trusted me on it and we made something happened.”

He also shared his thoughts on “Old Town Road,” and added,

“I think it’s dope. I think it’ s a situation where again, inspirations, people are evolving. People are opening their minds up. One of the people who I definitely think is ahead of the curve with all spectrums all of the time is Pharrell. 

Pharrell Williams

“To me, not just because I love him, but he always puts out great music. Sometimes Pharrell can put out music that’s three or four years ahead of people, and everybody don’t get it. But then, Pharrell can play a record he did five years from now today, and you’ll swear he just did it because he’s been doing that. That’s what I’ve always wanted to be, and I thought that you just always stay ahead of it.

He used his hit single with McGraw as an example.

“So to do like the Tim McGraws and all that, I knew we was gonna get to this point one day. You have no doubt. Hip Hop is the biggest on the planet. Country artists… their kids are growing up. They’re country artists as well but they grew up on Hip Hop. So what are you gonna do? Florida Georiga Line and things like that… them guys listen to nothing but rap.”

Meanwhile, even though he got lots of backlash for the video content in his song “Tip Drill,” he said that’s definitely not unusual these days.

“That’s like regular ABC TV… regular network TV. Back then it was ‘oh my gosh,’ it was blasphemous. Now, you look at anything, TNT, anything after 10:00, its’ the norm. Back then it was a culture shock.”

He also teased new music for the holidays.

Your thoughts? Tell us in the comments!

Source: Entertainment Tonight

Authored by: Char Patterson