OutKast’s André 3000 Explains Why He’s Not Putting Out a Rap Album

OutKast’s André 3000 Explains Why He’s Not Putting Out a Rap Album

André 3000 is being candid about his decision to leave hip-hop. 

Ahead of the release of his upcoming album, New Blue Sun, which has no vocals and all flute and woodwind tone instruments, the 48-year-old GRAMMY-winning musician says that there’s simply nothing for him to rap about.

“I’ve worked with some of the newest, freshest, youngest, and old-school producers. I get beats all the time. I try to write all the time,” the “Hey Ya” rapper tells GQ. “Even now people think, Oh, man, he’s just sitting on raps, or he’s just holding these raps hostage. I ain’t got no raps like that. It actually feels…sometimes it feels inauthentic for me to rap because I don’t have anything to talk about in that way. I’m 48 years old. And not to say that age is a thing that dictates what you rap about, but in a way it does. And things that happen in my life, like, what are you talking about? ‘I got to go get a colonoscopy.’ What are you rapping about? ‘My eyesight is going bad.” You can find cool ways to say it, but….”

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André 3000 knows there’s a space for him in hip-hop, and the people want to hear it, but his time in the genre has run its course and he’s fine with popping in, with his flute. 

“But look at the greatest boxers now,” he says. “What do they do? They do exhibition fights every now and then, but they’re not stepping in the ring. You know what I mean?”

OutKast, the dynamic rap duo featuring 3 Stacks and Big Boi, last released music in 2006. As he reflects on his time in the hit-making group, he looks at the thing that caused him and Big Boi to eventually grow apart creatively — after performing together for the final time in 2014.

“It happened so fast,” he says about his days in the group. “Sometimes I don’t even remember what cities we performed in.”

He adds, “There’s a certain chemistry that me and Big Boi had and have,” the “Roses” rapper says. “I think over time, people don’t understand that chemistry changes.”

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Amid all of the success and his decision to step away from the music that he’s known for, André 3000 says that he doesn’t regret the fame, though he no longer wants it.

“That’s life: You want what you want until you don’t want it,” he tells GQ. “I don’t regret any of that, but it’s kind of like now that I’m at a certain level, I miss certain things about normalcy.”

As for what fans can expect from New Blue Sun, André 3000 doesn’t know, but he knows that there will be mixed reactions when it comes to his latest sound.

“I just think it’s a stepping stone,” he reveals. “I’ve played it for certain friends, and depending on who they are, you get certain reactions. So I know that’s how the world will react too. But it’s all positive. It’s kind of like: You may get someone that cries. You may get someone that immediately starts to do yoga. You may get someone that goes to sleep. Then you got the homie that be like, ‘Y’all gon’ put some beats on that sh*t?’ You get it all, man.”


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