Michael Ausiello
July 28, 2008 AT 07:21 PM EDT

Gary Sinise and Co. are taking a little detour to Nellyville this fall.

Sources confirm to me exclusively that rapper and occasional actor Nelly is joining CSI: NY for a multi-episode arc. The Grammy winner will play a club owner who serves as a confidential informant to Mac and his team.

“He’s a great actor,” gushes executive producer Pam Veasey of Nelly, whose only major thespian credit to date is 2005’s The Longest Yard. “He really stepped up.”

In other CSI: NY news, in a piece of stunt casting that has the words “Danny/Lindsay montage” written all over it, Maroon 5 will make a cameo in this season’s second episode, airing Oct. 1.

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