New Outkast record rumored; Andre 3000 still may portray Jimi Hendrix


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Say what you want about Dr. Dre. ‘Detox’ has been as mythological as Lemuria since I was in high school and he’s probably recorded enough music over the last decade to make Neil Young’s vaults look like Al Capone’s. But at least he’s occasionally kind enough to drop a single or two to keep hope alive -- even if said singles were the thumping stasis of ‘Kush’ and the malpractice-worthy ‘I Need a Doctor.’ We’ve had no such luck with Outkast -- at least not since they recorded the stunning ‘Da Art of Storytelling Pt 4’ for a 2007 DJ Drama album.

Over the last four years, we’ve heard a litany of rumors claiming that the album delays stem from everything from contractual squabbles with Jive to lingering tensions between Big Boi and Andre 3000. Meanwhile, BIg Boi continues to play the good soldier, dropping last year’s modern funk-rap masterpiece, ‘Sir Lucious Leftfoot’ and generally doing everything to dispel everyone’s nagging suspicion that Outkast has met the same fate as Sasha Thumper. As for Andre, he’s not giving interviews and still continues to pursue an acting career. He’s also, uh, doing the ocassional guest verse for Lloyd.


But over the last two weeks, a few vague tidbits of information have surfaced to give the Outkast acolytes some hope. According to Hip Hop Wired, a ‘rock solid industry source’ has claimed that Outkast is on track to release a new album by early next year. Both Dre and Big are working on solo projects; they want those out by the end of 2011.” Hopefully that isn’t the same industry source who has offered some variation of that statement throughout the last three years. In contrast to those rumors is this recent Esquire interview with ‘Captain America’ star Haley Atwell, who claims that Andre is still on tap to play Jimi Hendrix in a forthcoming biopic. Maybe. As she claims: ‘Next up is possibly a Jimi Hendrix biopic — an independent film with Andre 3000 from OutKast playing Jimi Hendrix. But I don’t know, really.’

So for those keeping track at home, a new Outkast record is on the way unless Andre decides to don a headband and re-create Woodstock. But you never know. With Hollywood, this project could be fast-tracked tomorrow or sent to the recycling bin with all those leftover copies of ‘Idlewild.’ One thing’s probably certain: if there is another Outkast album it will likely contain some pretty awesome psychedelic guitar solos.


Big Boi talks Kate Bush, ‘Chico Dusty,’ rap Jedi school, and a timeline for a new Outkast album

In music or film, a solitary refinement liberates Outkast

Album review: ‘Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty
--Jeff Weiss