After several delays, OutKast is planning a fall release for its next album and a January launch for its debut film, tentatively titled "My Life in Idlewild." Group member Big Boi tells Billboard.com
After several delays, OutKast is planning a fall release for its next album and a January launch for its debut film, tentatively titled "My Life in Idlewild." Group member Big Boi tells Billboard.com a second studio album, "The Hard 10," may even hit stores before 2006 is out.
The first set will serve as the soundtrack to the film and is "about 80% finished," according to Big Boi. It will be OutKast's first new music since its 2003 double-album "Speakerboxx/The Love Below," which has sold 5.5 million copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
And while he and colleague Andre 3000 are not collaborating together in the studio, the artist says that arrangement provides him with the "freedom to bang what you want to bang. Since the [1998 album] 'Aquemini,' we haven't been in the studio together. But Dre will call me up and be like, 'Here's my idea. Send me the Pro Tools session so I can go in there and lace it.'"
"My Life in Idlewild" is set in the 1930s, and Big Boi says that period in history has rubbed off on some of the music. "In our own little way," he says. "Just with the Ragtime feel. It's hip-hop. It's OutKast. It is what we've been doing for years. Some songs have a little more piano or whatever, but the whole project was a natural progression from a double CD. It was like, where do we go from here?"
Big Boi stresses, "This is an OutKast album. It isn't like a soundtrack where we go get this person or that person." And he promises the music can stand on its own apart from the film, should a fan choose to not take in both projects.
"It's not like every song is about the movie," he says. "The movie is based on relationships: with your family, the most high, your business relationships. The album is about everything, not just relationships."
OutKast has not toured since hitting the road in support of 2000's "Stankonia," but Big Boi won't rule out shows at some point in the future. "Talking to Dre, he's like, 'Whenever I feel it.' But until then, we have such a big catalog that I can go out there [solo] and rock for two hours and kill it," he says. "At first, I was a little nervous. But the fans want to hear the music so badly, it has just been great."
On top of everything else, Big Boi is finishing up a DVD that will offer fans a seldom-seem glimpse behind the scenes of OutKast. "It's a diary, almost, from 1993 until now," he reveals. "Live performances all over the world, riding on the tour bus, truck stops. I have new music playing behind all the stuff. It's funny as hell and shows you an intimate look at me and Dre and how we do it on the road. I've been blessed to keep a video camera around all these years, so I went through the footage and came up with a dope little movie."