Hugh Laurie Makes It 'Rain': Video Interview

The "House" actor talks to Billboard about his new album, "Didn't It Rain," the blues and the genius of Hank Sr.

Hugh Laurie's second album, "Didn’t It Rain," debuted at No. 21 on the Billboard 200 last week, selling 14,000 copies, according to SoundScan. Laurie, the actor best known for "House," expanded his reach beyond piano blues on this album, which he partially attributes to touring on the heels of his debut for Warner Bros.

"We got to do this tango, 'Kiss of Fire,' entirely because of this experience in Buenos Aires," he tells Billboard. "After our show, we went to a tango bar and were knocked out by the signing and dancing and playing. I asked these fourdancers, if we can find a tango by four in the afternoon, will you come dance on the stage?

"I spent the night going through tango and came across this wonderful one Louis Armstrong had done based on 'El Chocolo.’ On another night we were in soundcheck I was looking at Jean while she was testing a microphone and said Bessie Smith is among us. Her spirit was there and if we don’t get Jean to sing a Bessie Smith song, we need to go to jail. She seized on it immediately and we did it two nights later. I had tears in my eyes it was so thrilling."

Laurie sat down to talk to Billboard about his album, the blues and working with producer Joe Henry. Watch it at the top of the page.