Andre 3000 knows he’s being watched. The Atlanta native, who rose to prominence as one-half of genre twisters Outkast, has lived quietly the past few years quietly, poking out his head to deliver spotlight-snatching verses on songs by Chris Brown, Ciara and Young Jeezy. With fewer than five musical cameos in 2012, the 37-year-old is aware that each guest appearance is another crank on the pressure knob.
"I miss creating all the time and I miss going with blinders on and not thinking about anything," says Andre, who was in New York City promoting a Gillette facial hair trimmer. "It's such a sad thing because now, people judge everything that I do. Because I don't do it much, they analyze every word and before, you could've had a shitty verse and people just forgot about it. So it's different now."
Following the release of Outkast’s last album, Idlewild, in 2006, Andre went into near musical hibernation. But partner-in-rhyme Big Boi raised hopes for a comeback this past May, tweeting that his second album, Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors, would precede 3K's solo debut, allegedly scheduled for this year. While Andre says that he flirts with some musical ideas, he has no concrete plans for a solo album and isn't sure if he'll release one.
"Things are kind of up in the air with me, and some days, I feel like yeah, I'll do it. Some days, I feel like, I don't. I don't know the future of music right now. I have no idea what I do. I honestly don't," he says. "I record and I write ideas. I think I'll always do that, for some reason. But I don't know if it will go to another artist or will it be my stuff or will it go to some movie? I don't know. I just kind of keep creating and hopefully, it'll fall into a slot."
Three Stacks was quick to skirt around Outkast reunion talk, and he said he was unaware of rumors that the duo was headed to Epic Records to reunite with L.A. Reid. "What's crazy is, I don't read the Internet. I've never had a Twitter, I've never had a Facebook," he said. "None of that kind of stuff, because it makes me mad to read it sometimes. I just don't. I don't hear all the rumors."
Though he’s off the grid, fans can expect to hear Andre 3000 on standout cut "Sorry" from T.I.’s upcoming album Trouble Man, as well as see him channel Jimi Hendrix in the biopic All is By My Side. For now, he’s working with Gillette to support the Prostate Cancer Foundation and tackling new music, one guest verse at a time. "My whole motivation is, I don't want to mess these people's songs up, more than anything than let me do something great," he said. "I try to do great, but it's just a different mind frame now. I don't sit around and rap everyday. I don't."