If the song was intended to get people talking, it's been a staggering success. 

But Brad Paisley's "Accidental Racist," a duet with LL Cool J on his new albumWheelhouse, out Tuesday, is also hugely controversial. 

Styled as a conversation between a white Southerner and a black New Yorker, the song features the two singers having a charged debate about race – and features Paisley's character walking into a coffee shop wearing a shirt with a Confederate flag on it. 

"I don't know if any of you noticed, but there is some racial tension here and there," Paisley, 40, says in an interview airing Tuesday on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. "I felt like when we were writing this song it wasn't necessarily up to the media … or talk radio or anything like that to deal with that anymore. I think it's music's turn to have the conversation."