Jason Aldean is eyeballing October to hit the studio and start working on his fifth album -- the follow-up to 2010's triple-platinum "My Kind of Party" and its three (so far) platinum or better hits.
"I'm really excited about the stuff we've got now," Aldean, who will work again with producer Michael Knox, tells Billboard.com. "We've got a pile of probably 20, 25 songs. All of a sudden you have people that are starting to write songs specifically for you, which is something we never had before and is pretty cool. You're always looking for hits and great songs, and I feel like we've got those early in the game right now. I feel like it's a great record already."
Aldean demures on what he specifically expects it to sound like, however. "It doesn't really take shape until you get in there and you really narrow it down to 12 songs or whatever," he explains. "We've never gone in and said, 'Hey, we're going to make a really country record,' or a country-rock record or whatever. I think you just wait on the songs to come in and then you go in the studio and the album takes shape. Whatever it sounds like when you're done is what it sounds like."
Aldean's been doing some writing as well, but he notes that, "I'm never going to be one of those guys that has eight, 10 songs on my record. It's just not the way I operate. I'm such a fan of so many other writers, and even though I may have a song that I think is cool and good it seems like I always find something that I like better and end up booting my own songs off the record."
Even though the new album is in his sights, "My Kind of Party" is hardly over. "Tattoos on This Town," the album's fourth single, is on the ascent, and Aldean can envision another one coming after that.
"We said before the album even came out that we felt we had five or six singles on this album if we wanted to do that," he says. "I think the public will tell you when they are ready for a new record. Right now the album is still selling like crazy, so as long as they're not tired of it."
Aldean is hoping his winning string continues to this year's Country Music Association Awards, where he's nominated in five categories -- including Entertainer of the Year.
"Obviously, man, I'm excited, really excited, for all this," says Aldean, adding that "I think we've got as good a chance as anybody, y'know? I don't really care about nominations if we don't have a shot at winning. You don't show up to the game to sit on the bench, y'know; You show up because you want to play, and that's how I've always felt about it. I feel like this year was kind of our breakout year, so I think I have legitimate shot at actually winning one of them. I'm pumped up about the show and being there. It'll be a whole different experience being there this time than it's been before at awards shows."