Jason Aldean's chart-topping 2012 album "Night Train" is still going with the album's fourth single -- the title track-- rolling up the country charts. But that isn't keeping him from beginning work on his sixth studio set.
"We actually started here in just the last couple of months looking for songs for my next record," Aldean tells Billboard. And, Aldean acknowledges, he's tending to look outside rather than hitting the writing room himself.
"Honestly, over the years I've gotten out of writing as much as I used to, because I'm my own worst critic when it comes to songs; I'm pretty hard on myself when it comes to that stuff, and I think there's a lot of great songwriters in Nashville. I want to find the best songs I can for my album, and if I happen to write 'em, great. If I don't, I've got no problem cutting outside songs, for sure."
Aldean has no shortage of submissions, of course, but he says that at this point "we have certain guys that know when we're getting ready to go in and cut a record, so they'll go in and write specifically for our record." Aldean predicts he'll hit the studio "maybe in the next two or three months to try to cut a few songs," but he has no target release date for the next album's release.
Meanwhile, with Aldean out on the road there's still life in the platinum "Night Train," though he's not sure if a fifth single is on the docket.
"That would be great, but it kinda depends on a lot of different things," Aldean explains. "Do I think we have five singles? Yeah. Will we put five singles out? I don't really know yet. I think a lot of things dictate that. I feel like you can kind of tell if an album has run its course and if it still has a bit of life left on it, and you make that call then."
Aldean currently has dates booked into late October, including a pair of concerts at Boston's Fenway Park July 12-13, a show at Chicago's Wrigley Field on July 20 and a headline appearance at the inaugural Faster Horses festival in Brooklyn, Mich., on July 21. Meanwhile, he's still buzzing from his stint co-hosting this year's CMT Music Awards and says he'd be game to do it again.
"It was fun," Aldean says. "It was a different experience for me at an awards show like that, dealing with that stuff and not really knowing what I would get into. I tended up being a lot of fun, and I enjoyed it. CMT was happy with it, and if they want to have us back that would be something I would definitely be interested in, so we'll see what happens."