Speaking exclusively to nme.com from a tourbus travelling between Denmark and Germany, Beck said he was due to head into the studio with Timbaland in about two weeks’ time and that he hoped some other material would be produced in their time together.
He explained: “I met him (Timbaland) at a TV show earlier this year. He wanted to meet me, and we got to talking and I told him that he was a major influence on the new album (‘Midnite Vultures’) and he was one of the four or five people who were currently very influential for me and he said the same thing, he said all he does is listen to my records and he went off in incredible detail about my new record. He basically said he said he was copying me, and I said I was copying him, so then we decided we had to work together. It comes out in our own styles, but we didn’t know we were egging each other on. I was excited to hear that.”
Beck also revealed the truth about his failed attempt at collaborating with Puff Daddy, and that the hip-hop star now snubs him.
“He was pursuing me heavily,” Beck said. “He basically came out on my tour and followed me around and then got me into the studio late one night and I threw down some awful vocals over some Elton John track with a hip-hop beat, and I was singing something about how expensive my hormones were, and it didn’t connect, and I never heard from him again. I’ve seen him at awards shows, he shook my hand once, and otherwise I didn’t really exist any more.
“It was like he was pursuing me and he had me, and I was discarded. I’m trying to get over it. But actually some of the tracks on my last album were from after that experience, I was inspired to write some songs, like what if that Puff Daddy track had worked out? ‘Hollywood Freaks’ was my fantasy of what Puff Daddy would do. That’s the kind of track I’d like to hear him do.”
He also revealed that his Reading/Leeds performances this weekend (August 26/27) would mark the “end of an era” as they were the last dates of his ‘Midnite Vultures’ world tour, and that he’d already finished his next album.
Beck explained: “I have one recorded, and I have one that’s half-recorded, and then I’m gonna go do one with the Dust Brothers and then I have a couple of other projects that’ll possibly happen later this year.”
He added that he would be trying to finish recording the album he started with Kool Keith two years ago which he hoped to release next summer.
For the full exclusive Beck interview, see this week’s (August 26) NME in shops in London now and throughout the country tomorrow (August 26).