NEW YORK (Billboard) - Although his seventh studio album, “Reggie,” hit stores Tuesday, Redman is already looking ahead to a busy 2011.
The veteran rapper told Billboard.com that he is using the often-delayed new album, which features cameos by Method Man, Bun B and Faith Evans, to explore different sounds before releasing a sequel to his classic 1996 disc “Muddy Waters” next year.
“I wanted to step out of the box musically, and show growth in my rhymes and my musical choices,” said Redman, who turned 40 earlier this year.
He added that songs like “Mics, Lights, Camera, Action” offer more political commentary than he’s used to, while the piano-driven “Lemme Get 2” has an inspirational message about life on the road.
“I think I have a job to do with my fans... to represent that 90s, soulful, substantial music that we’re missing now,” he said.
As for his other musical projects, Redman says that he has “five songs” ready for “Muddy Waters 2,” and that the album will be “another classic” when it is released in 2011.
The rapper also plans to release “Blackout! 3,” his third collaborative effort with Method Man, sometime next year.
Additionally, Redman is writing a screenplay for a new movie starring Method Man and himself, but he said that “How High 2,” the rumored follow-up to the rappers’ 2001 stoner comedy, will probably never get made due to “rights and paper work.
“Universal is not giving up the names and characters,” he explained. “I’m like, ‘If you’re not gonna do it, why not just do the damn movie then and stop playing!’”
Redman added that the new film project will be “marijuana-related, but it’s gotta make sense. I’m trying to work on something big.”
With “Reggie” out and two more albums on the way, Redman said he’s hungry to contribute a unique perspective to the hip-hop community.
He loved the fact that so many rappers were honored with 2011 Grammy nominations last week, although he felt there was one glaring omission.
“I’m glad so many of the nominees were hip-hop, but they should have my man Rick Ross up in there,” said Redman of the rapper, whose “Teflon Don” was shut out of the hip-hop categories. “He definitely showed growth, worked hard and showed that he loves the music he’s making. He did a great job.”
Editing by Zorianna Kit