Herbie Hancock says his forthcoming album "The Imagine Project" -- due out June 22 -- was "the hardest record I've ever made." And not just because of the music.
In fact, the legendary keyboardist tells Billboard.com that actually playing the 10 tracks "was easy compared to what it took to put (the album) together," including a wealth of guest performers -- Dave Matthews, Seal, Pink, Jeff Beck, the Chieftains, Toumani Diabete, Wayne Shorter, Chaka Khan and others -- and recording sessions in several countries such as the U.S., India, England, France, Ireland and Brazil. "Every song on the record was like putting a while new album together," notes Hancock, who worked on the album with Larry Klein, co-producer of 2007's Grammy Award-winning "River/The Joni Letters." "It's that kind of experience. You had to completely retool for each song. Normally you don't have to do that.
"But I like the fact that everything on the record is different from everything else. It's in keeping with what's being practiced today by the general public, which is that people buy songs. In the past you had to buy whole albums; now you can buy song by song, so people buy what they want and put their own compilation in a way. But this is really like a compilation in a way, and I think it's a good thing."