Growing up in the Midwest, Nelly always had an affinity for country music. So when he had to choose a country singer to work with on his Suit LP, it was easy. He wanted Tim McGraw because, as Nelly reportedly told his manager, not only can the crooner sing, “He’s a badass, he’s got game, and he’s got a fine bitch!”
“That’s what Nelly said, and I had to respect him for that,” McGraw said recently in New York, laughing off the incident. While on a visit to the Big Apple, he detailed how he and Nells hooked up for their successful ballad, “Over and Over” (see “Nelly’s Double Dose Features Mase, X-tina And … Tim McGraw?” ).
“I love Nelly,” McGraw said. “The first time I met him was when we played in a basketball game together in Atlanta a couple of years ago — when I smoked him pretty good. We always enjoyed each other and talked about working together. So he’d written this song and the first thing Nelly did was tell his manager to call me. If you know Nelly, he’s such a great guy, I couldn’t wait to work with him.”
Although Nelly considers “Over and Over” — which has reached as high as #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart — “country,” McGraw had a different idea when he heard the record.
“I get in there and say, ’It ain’t nothin’ country about this song,’ ” McGraw recalled. “But it was fun to get in there and sing with him. People are really liking the song, so we’ll see what happens.”
Nelly and McGraw have linked again to shoot a video for the song, but details are being kept on the down low by Universal Records. The clip is currently being edited.