By Kurt Wolff
If you’ve been curious to hear the upcoming solo album from Sugarland‘s Jennifer Nettles, the wait is almost over. She announced on her Twitter account today that the album, titled That Girl, will hit stores Jan. 14, 2014.
The release date is set! Mark those calendars - my debut solo album "That Girl" is coming Jan. 14th woo-hoo! budurl.com/9m4p—
Jennifer Nettles (@JenniferNettles) November 05, 2013
That Girl will be Nettles’ first outing without her Sugarland partner Kristian Bush (Sugarland is on hiatus, and Bush is also working on solo material). The album was produced by Rick Rubin and includes collaborations with such artists as Richard Marx and Butch Walker–the latter cowriting the title track, which is also the album’s first radio single.
“I love what I do with Sugarland,” Nettles told CBS Charlotte’s The New 103.7 (a Radio.com station) this summer. “But I’ve been wanting to do this project for a long time and [I] have been writing for it for three years. There’s the sound we have in Sugarland, but there was something I wanted to do that was a different sound.”
Nettles has already gained good attention for her single “That Girl,” which she released in August. As she explained to Radio.com at the time, the basic idea of the song is of a woman “who had been tricked, bamboozled if you will” by a man she had been seeing, who didn’t let on that “he had someone else in the picture. But when she finds that out, she says, ‘Oh no, I’m gonna call her and tell her that you’re being that guy, because I don’t want to be that girl with that stigma.’”
Walker, she said, “brought the idea [for the song] over,” and as they were putting it together, something clicked. “I looked at him [Butch] and said, ‘This should really be called “The Ballad of Jolene” in parentheses,’” referring to the classic Dolly Parton song “Jolene,” which is about a woman pleading to another–whose name is Jolene, and whom the narrator sees as glamorous and alluring–to not steal her man away from her.
Walker isn’t the only artist collaborating with Nettles on That Girl. The album also features “Know You Want to Know,” a song she wrote with pop artist Richard Marx. Marx was one of many artists on hand, too, at a showcase in Nashville this past Sunday (Nov. 3), where Nettles previewed songs from That Girl. The evening also included performances from such Nettles pals as Little Big Town’s Phillip Sweet, “Strong” singer Will Hoge and country legend Ronnie Milsap.
Watch for That Girl in stores and digital outlets on Jan. 14.