A week away from releasing her second vocal album, Queen Latifah is also planning a return to rap.

A week away from releasing her second vocal album, Queen Latifah is also planning a return to rap.

"I'd love to make another rap album," Latifah, who releases "Trav'lin' Light" on Sept. 25 via Verve, tell Billboard.com. "I have some music I've already been working on. But everything has to have its proper place; I don't really want to drop the rap album while ('Trav'lin' Light') is out. I really want to respect every genre for what it is, and I'd prefer to record a rap album and be out there promoting it."

Latifah assures us that "there's plenty to talk about" when she does do her next rap album, which will be her first since 1998's "Order in the Court." "I've always been sort of socially conscious," she notes. "For me it's always about mixing some sort of topic with a hot beat and a good hook. Every record's not gonna be a message record; there'll be a good mix of party records and content records mixed with some hot music.

And even though she has a broader and more adult following these days thanks to well-received roles in films such as "Chicago," "Hairspray" and "Beauty Shop," and on HBO's "Life Support," Latifah is confident there's still an audience that will be receptive to her rapping again.

"I think there's a bunch of rap heads and hip-hop lovers who are my age," she says. "They just want good music that's not shallow. They really want more from their music. Nobody's really filled my shoes yet. There's still room for me to do my thing."

"Trav'lin' Light," the follow-up to her vocal debut, 2005's Grammy-nominated "The Dana Owens Album," features covers of both standards and pop songs made famous by 10cc, Smokey Robinson, the Pointer Sisters and Donny Hathaway. She begins a tour to support the album on Sept. 29 in Dallas.