Lil Jon Was Inspired to Make a Meditation Album After He and Wife Nicole Smith Split: 'I'm Separated Now'

"I've always kind of meditated a little bit, but when I turned 50, started going through a lot of things," the rapper told 'XXL'

<p>Steven Ferdman/Getty</p> Lil Jon and Nicole Smith in New York City in November 2019

Steven Ferdman/Getty

Lil Jon and Nicole Smith in New York City in November 2019

Lil Jon has a reason for "turning down" the vibes on his forthcoming album.

In an interview with XXL, the "Act a Fool" artist (whose real name is Jonathan Smith), 53, said the project, titled Total Meditation, was impacted by getting deeper into his meditation practice after he and his wife Nicole Smith — whom he married in 2004 — split.

"I've always kind of meditated a little bit," Lil Jon told the outlet. "But when I turned 50, started going through a lot of things. Started going through a divorce, I'm separated now, and all the emotions from the divorce and all that process was really getting to me. So, I found I had to start to go within to calm myself."

A rep for the rapper tells PEOPLE exclusively, "Nearly two years ago, Lil Jon and his wife Nicole decided to separate. This is an amicable split, and while Lil Jon is a public figure, his family matters will remain private at this time."

<p>Josh Brasted/WireImage</p> Lil Jon performs in New Orleans in June 2023

Josh Brasted/WireImage

Lil Jon performs in New Orleans in June 2023

Related: Lil Jon Wants to Do What? Designer Anitra Mecadon Says Season 2 Is ‘Wild’ and ‘Insane’ (Exclusive)

Elsewhere in the interview, the hip-hop star reflected on appearing at the Super Bowl halftime show on Sunday, where he was the show's musical director and performed a part of "Turn Down for What" before transitioning into "Yeah!" with Usher and Ludacris.

"It was quite a process to do," Lil Jon said. "It was a lot of hard work. It was a lot of figuring out the proper setlists. I think we were up to like 180 different versions of the setlists by the time we got to the end."

During the performance, he also shared a new song with Pizza Hut called "Pizza wHut!?," as a way to unite pizza and music lovers.

Last week, PEOPLE learned that Lil Jon would be releasing a 10-track guided meditation album on Feb. 16.

In a report by TMZ, the forthcoming LP was described as "truthful" to his personal life, which has been focused on "fitness and wellness."

Lil Jon supported the news about his new record by sharing posts on Instagram Stories and retweeting related stories about the project.

The rapper has been known to showcase his varying interests in the past.

In 2022, he starred in his own HGTV home design series, Lil Jon Wants to Do What?, now back for its second season.

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<p>Craig Sjodin/ABC via Getty</p> Lil Jon

Craig Sjodin/ABC via Getty

Lil Jon

Related: Rapper Lil Jon to Turn Down His Usual Party Vibes with Upcoming Guided Meditation Album

"There's many facets of Lil Jon, as we all know from the Dave Chappelle sketches," he told PEOPLE. "It's not all about screaming and partying on this HGTV show. It's really about catching a vibe from people, listening to the homeowners, and [giving them] a place where they can create memories with their family."

The show featured Lil Jon and professional designer Anitra Mecadon as they worked with a family to remodel a section of their house by bringing some outlandish ideas to life.

"Anitra's always trying to juggle and save," he said. "I'm like, 'Hey, no, we just do this.' [And she says,] 'No, Jon. We don't have it in the budget.'"

The second season of Lil Jon Wants to Do What? premiered on HGTV on Monday, Feb. 12 at 10 p.m. ET.

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