Sheryl Crow continues to be welcomed with a warm reception from country fans after making her official debut in the genre earlier this year.
Although she's been an honorary member of the country community for some time through collaborations with Kid Rock, Vince Gill, Brooks & Dunn and Loretta Lynn, Crow's single "Easy" is the first glimpse of her inaugural album aimed at mainstream country.
Crow's foray into country music isn't all that surprising. Likewise, it's appropriate that her upcoming album is titled Feels Like Home.
"I moved to Nashville going on eight years ago, and it just seemed like the format that I guess I belong at, in some ways," she said during a recent interview with CMT Hot 20 Countdown. "It's very song oriented, very musician oriented ... structure, lyric, storytelling. And so my hope is that people don't feel like I'm carpet bagging."
Crow wrote "Easy" with Jeff Trott (who also collaborated with her on "If It Makes You Happy," "Everyday Is a Winding Road" and other hits) and veteran Nashville songwriter Chris DuBois.
"It's funny," she said. "There for a while and I think still, a lot of country artists write about going away to Mexico and the Caribbean -- Kenny Chesney, Toby Keith, Alan Jackson. And I love all those songs, but I was like, 'Let's write a song about a staycation. About staying home when you can't afford to go to the Caribbean or wherever or on your yacht and making your home feel like you're getting away. So that's what it's about."
When the time came to create a music video for the song, she enlisted help from actor Jason Lewis. With numerous TV appearances on shows including Beverly Hills, 90210, CSI: Miami, Sex and the City and How I Met Your Mother and roles in films such as Sex and the City 2, Lewis gives Crow's video an added special visual appeal.
"Jason Lewis is my romantic interest, and he is interesting," she said. "And he's not too shabby. He is darling and he is so fun. He's so great because he's got that kind of mischievous thing going on."
Lewis also kind words to say about the singer-songwriter.
"She's about as nice as they come -- real down to earth, very lovely and ... not hard on the eyes," he said. "And she can sing."
Crow is currently previewing her new music across the nation. Feels Like Home will be released Sept. 10.
For the latest country music news, tune into CMT Hot 20 Countdown on Saturdays at 11:30 a.m. ET/PT.