Common has a new love — and we’re not talking about tennis star Serena Williams. After 16 years and eight albums, Com is still an MC first and foremost, but the silver screen has a hold on him.
“I love acting,” Common told MTV News. “I’m so new to it. I can do acting when I’m 70-something. Obviously, I say, ‘Man, I wanna do hip-hop music like a jazz musician. I wanna be, like, 50-something doing hip-hop.’ But man, I know I can act till I’m 70. And I have so much room to grow. I’m like, ‘Man, I wanna do it.’ ”
The Chicago legend admitted that Hollywood is a lot easier world than hip-hop. “Sometimes they just keep you on hold,” he smiled. “You be working for four days out the week. The rest of the days, you go and drink wine on the river in Prague.”
Common’s next project is “Terminator: Salvation” alongside Christian Bale. The science-fiction/action vehicle is slated for this summer.
“We’re both part of the resistance,” said Com, who plays the best friend to Bale’s John Connor. “The resistance is fighting the machines. … You got a black dude fighting on the good side to save humanity. It shows the progress we wanna make in the world. We see what Barack is doing to raise the consciousness of all people. Then to see different things happen in the entertainment world, it’s beautiful.”
The veteran MC’s next LP, Universal Mind Control, is also heading in a new direction. Instead of Kanye West producing most of the LP, Common went with Mr. DJ (Outkast) and the Neptunes.
“I felt that I made the change because it came real natural,” he said. “I was talking to Pharrell about working, and we went into the studio — me, him and Chad [Hugo]. When I make albums, I like to focus on maybe one or two producers. Pharrell, we both was making that magic. I was like, ‘Let’s keep going.’ ”
By the time Common got to Kanye, his album was done. The Louis Vuitton Don did jump on a record called “Punch Drunk Love.”
“I feel like me and ‘Ye, we always gonna make music together,” Common said. “It’s a good change of pace for us. On the same token, you wanna keep people on their toes. I don’t wanna be predictable.”
Common is so unpredictable these days that he had to switch the album’s title midway through production. It was originally planned to be an EP called Invincible Summer.
“It was feeling like an album to me,” he said about getting deeper into the recording process. “And unfortunately, we missed the summer release. So I was like, ‘It can’t be called Invincible Summer anymore.’ And Universal Mind Control is the name of one of the songs. I like that for an album title. It kind of describes the music too. [The song] sounds futuristic, but it has an Afrika Bambaataa feel to it. I love what Hype [Williams] did with the video.”
Other guests on the November 11 release include Star Trak rock group Chester French. They appear on a record called “What a World” that has a rock-and-roll feel. Common kicks rhymes on the track with an ’80s, Debbie Harry of Blondie feel.
Check out everything we’ve got on “Terminator: Salvation.”
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