Between promoting his latest album "rEVOLVEr," hosting another benefit concert in his native Tallahassee this March and participating in Guitar Center's "Your Next Record" program, T-Pain is in store for a hectic 2012. Yet as the Grammy Awards approach this weekend, the rapper-turned-singer is looking back -- and trying to figure out how his latest hit, "5 O'Clock" featuring Wiz Khalifa and Lily Allen, didn't earn any nominations.
"We made the deadline for this year -- I definitely made sure of that," T-Pain tells Billboard.com about submitting "5 O'Clock," which peaked at No. 10 on the Hot 100, for Grammy consideration. "The weird thing was, stat-wise and chart-wise, this is one of the biggest songs I've ever made. It's huge, and the crazy thing is, I have zero Grammy nominations. But when I didn't have songs of this caliber I was getting four or five a year. That's the only weird thing about the song that confuses me, but hey, whatever."
Still, T-Pain remains in good spirits -- after all, the hip-hop/R&B artist has a pair of Grammys, one for Kanye West's "Good Life" and another for Jamie Foxx's "Blame It." Now, Pain has used his knack for collaboration to wrangle the talent for Come To The Crib 2, a benefit concert in conjunction with his newly launched "If I Could Change the World" charity at the Tallahassee Leon County Civic Center on Mar. 31. Chris Brown, DJ Khaled, Ace Hood and more will perform at the event, which follows 2007's sold-out Come To The Crib concert.
"I really do feel good about doing it," says T-Pain about the concert. "I was just putting the word out… I literally just sent a mass text from my phone [to different artists] and I was like, 'Yo, I need you. Please do this for my city. I would do this for you any day.' So anybody who responded I just had to confirm it, then boom."
T-Pain has also been tapped to be a part of Guitar Center's "Your Next Record" artist discovery program: unsigned artists will submit original tracks through the contest, and the most promising candidate will have their single produced and written by T-Pain in a unique studio experience. Previous participants in the program include Slash and Travis Barker.
"I just want to give somebody a chance and show them how this life is, and really get them into the game the way they deserve it," says T-Pain. "If the music is good, then they have no choice but to get on. It's God's will that they get on so I'm just giving them a path, I'm giving them a way to really make it the way they really deserve."
T-Pain is currently on the road with Gym Class Heroes on the Snowstorm Music Tour, which heads to Dekalb, Ill. on Friday night (Feb. 10).