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Toby Keith Clarifies Country and Hip-Hop Comments: ‘Get in Your Zone if You’re Gonna Be Country’

Toby Keith
Christopher Polk, Getty Images

Toby Keith released his newest album, ‘Drinks After Work,’ this week and on the record, you’ll see the opinionated artist sticking with his traditional country sound. Keith is a country singer we probably won’t see making a living off of the blended country/hip-hop sound, either.

The ‘I Wanna Talk About Me’ singer is known for being outspoken, especially when it comes to his music. He was recently quoted about blended music and why he won’t be doing that to garner airplay or force hits.

“You hear the hip-hop thing start kicking in, and you start going, ‘Is that what we gotta do now to have a hit?,’” Keith said. “I don’t know how to do that. Is that what I need every one of my songs to sound like now? But … I’m not going to change much. And when it quits working, I’ve got other stuff to do.”

He’s once again speaking out, saying his previous comments were misunderstood.

“I started that stuff with ‘[I Wanna] Talk About Me’,” Keith said about how he has done the music meshing himself (quote via Nashville Gab). “I think it’s cool to step out and do something like that, I just don’t think it’s cool to make a living doing that.”

Keith says country stars can do collaborations and branch out for different sounds.

But at the end of the day country singers should be just that — country.

“It’s cool to step out and do some R&B stuff,” he mused. “It’s cool to step out and do some rock stuff. It’s cool to do traditional country but at the end of the day if you’re gonna be a country artist, I don’t think you just keep making a living off of turning country into hip-hop songs. I think the hip-hop artists would get tired of listening to you do bad country.”

The singer says he was by no means trying to diss anybody with his comments. ”It wasn’t a diss as much as a do what you do, but get in your zone if you’re going to be country,” Keith said.

He even said a Snoop Dogg collaboration would be fun. The two met at their son’s soccer games and Snoop complimented Keith’s ‘Red Solo Cup.”

Keith was a little less outspoken when it came to the topic of Miley Cyrus. What would Keith’s say if the twerking pop princess was his daughter?

“Don’t touch my heart, my achy breaky heart,” Keith joked in song. “Well you know what the greatest thing about it is? That I don’t have to worry about it.”

Next: These Are Toby Keith's Best Lyrics

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