Among hip-hop's elder statesmen and chief diplomats stands Q-Tip, who's working on a new solo album—his first since 2009—that will potentially feature Kanye West, Beck, Fiona Apple, and Marsha Ambrosius as singers and songwriters.

Granted, Q-Tip's been working on his latest album, Last Zulu, for more than three years now. Addressing the epic, Q-Tip talked to Billboard this week to discuss his recording timeline, potential collaborators, and the status of his affiliation with G.O.O.D. Music. Q-Tip also addressed recent speculation that production of Kanye's upcoming solo album has stalled, telling Billboard, "It's not like [Kanye] scrapped any of it, that's a rumor."

While Q-Tip was originally slated to contribute production for Kanye's upcoming solo album, it seems Kanye won't be returning the favor; Q-Tip says he's making all the beats for Last Zulu himself. "I'm putting the finishing touches on it now," he promises. "I'm trying to keep up with my counterparts Sade and D'Angelo and take 8 years, 9 years between records."

Q-Tip is recording some of the album's choruses in several languages, an odd decision that perhaps explains all the delays.