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R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe Working on Solo Project

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Former R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe has revealed he has been working on a solo album. “Eighteen songs are already ready,” Stipe recently told Italian newspaper La Repubblica, as reported on his former band’s website. “For five years I’d had a clean break from music. Now I’m writing, composing and recording all by myself and for the first time.” According to Stereogum, it’s unclear if the three new songs Stipe sang during a surprise opening set for Patti Smith last month made the cut.