UNIVERSAL CITY, California — Just as Bob Marley was opposed to "Waiting in Vain," so is his 21st-century torch-carrier, Sean Paul.
"My new single's about askin' the ladies, 'Please give me some love,' " Paul said of his latest smash,"(When You Gonna) Give It Up to Me," which appears on the soundtrack for the dance flick "Step Up." "You know, 'It's my time. I've been waiting in line. I don't want to wait in vain.' That's what it's about."
The single, which features Keyshia Cole, has risen to #6 on Billboard's Hot 100, making it Paul's third successful release from 2005's The Trinity, after "We Be Burnin' " and "Temperature."
And if it's up to Paul, there will be a fourth this fall.
"I would love to release a song called 'Never Gonna Be the Same,' " Paul said of a tune he's already released overseas. "It's a song I wrote about a friend who passed away. I did a video for it already in Jamaica, in the streets and the neighborhoods that we used to walk together. And so it's a real special video. And I hope to have it here."
Paul wrote the song after a fellow musician named Daddigon was gunned down early last year on the streets of Kingston. The lyrics also mention others he has lost over the years, including an aunt and girlfriend. Violence in Jamaica is a topic Paul plans to address on his fourth album, which he's writing now and will release in the spring.
In the meantime, he's still on the road with Mariah Carey. "I'm very proud to open for her," Paul said backstage at Sunday's Teen Choice Awards (see "Britney Introduces K-Fed, Nick Lachey Scores 'Awkward' Award At Teen Choice 2006"). "I'll be doin' the tour with her until September 11. I've been away from home a long time, so in September I'm gonna try to go back home and chill out in the sun and do my own thing."
His own thing will likely include some recording sessions, but Paul has no intentions of following in the footsteps of so many American rappers by heading to the big screen. "I don't have a strong desire to really do movies unless it would match my part," he said.
"So maybe if somebody wrote a movie about the best artist in the world. Maybe," he added with a smile.