Country singer Brad Paisley, appearing on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno Wednesday night, clarified the intent behind his controversial collaboration with LL Cool J, Accidental Racist, saying "it comes from a good place."
The song made waves earlier this week, with critics abroad ripping the duet that features racially-charged lyrics such as: “If you don’t judge my do-rag/ I won’t judge your red flag/ If you don’t judge my gold chains/ I’ll forget the iron chains.”
Paisley told Leno he wrote the song with the best intents, as "racism has been on his mind.
"Last year, we had some really powerful movies deal with it really well," the country singer said. "We had Django Unchained and Lincoln, and the media deals with it all the time, and I thought maybe it would be an interesting conversation between country music and rap music to deal with this subject between two individuals in a loving and understanding way."
"I thought maybe it would be an interesting conversation between country music and rap music to deal with this subject between two individuals in a loving and understanding way."
Paisley said the underlying intent of the song with LL, a close pal of his, was to "explore what happens when two people of different backgrounds have a dialogue.
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He said his new album "is meant to touch on some themes that I think aren't normally touched on in music -- and in the context of this record, it makes a little more sense. But it feels like, when you take the song out of this record, it's sort of like 'What in the world? What got him on that?'"
"We don’t expect to get the answer in this song: It's not perfect, but it's honest."
The other half of the song, LL, will address the issue on Thursday's Tonight Show, airing on NBC at 11:35/10:35.