Jamey Johnson still has plenty of life left in his current album, the gold-certified "That Lonesome Song." But the country artist, whose single "In Color" was the Academy of Country Music's Song of the Year, says that he's "so far ahead of another album it's not even funny."
"I've got 40 or so songs already in the can that are almost finished," Johnson -- whose current single, "The High Cost of Living," is climbing the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart -- tells Billboard.com. "The past several times we've been in the studio it's just...fresh. It stays new. It's been really fun for me."
Johnson will eventually cull some of those songs into a follow-up to "That Lonesome Song," but he's not in album mode yet.
"Our days of going in and knocking an album out in one day are probably done," he explains. "From now on we're probably going to keep going in and recording and keep material available. We'll go in and if we end up doing something special with that session then great, if not then, well, we did it. When we've got some cull stuff we can use, we'll take those and place 'em somewhere along the way. We're always looking for innovative ways to bring our songs to the people."
Johnson says he can't yet put his finger on any new directions his next album might take. "We just kind of get in there and try different grooves and see what works best," he notes. But he fully expects that his longtime fans and those jumping on "That Lonesome Song's" bandwagon in the wake of its success will find what follows to be at least somewhat familiar.
"My thing is to continue telling the story I started with," says Johnson, who's also co-written hits such as "Honky Tonk Badonkadonk" for Trace Adkins and "Give It Away" for George Strait. "Some people look at 'That Lonesome Song' as one story, but each song takes you to a different place. The story starts here and then goes there and there...I think the next album's going to be a continuation of that and just be about more of the things I've experienced and gone through since I wrote those songs."
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