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Pharrell Williams will return as a solo artist with his new album, G I R L, out on March 3.
Williams has made a name for himself as a superstar producer and guest artist, appearing on two of summer 2013's biggest hits - Daft Punk's "Get Lucky" and Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines." However, the artist is going back to solo recording. His last solo album was 2006's Grammy-nominated In My Mind, reports Billboard. Williams also released four albums with his band N.E.R.D., as well as a 2003 compilation album with his production group, The Neptunes.
G I R L will be Williams' first album with Columbia and will feature his hit single from Despicable Me 2, "Happy." On iTunes, fans can pre-order the 10 track album for $16.99. Along with the March 3 release date, the album art was also posted on iTunes and shows Williams clad in a robe and sunglasses, surrounded by three similarly dressed women.
In a statement, Williams spoke about his journey making his new album. "When Columbia Records presented me with the opportunity to make an album, three things came to mind," Williams said. "One was the sense of overwhelming honor that I felt when I realized that they were interested in partnering with me on the album that I had always dreamt of making. Two, it would have to feel festive and urgent. And three, I instantly knew it would be called G I R L."
MTV News reports that Pharrell will perform "Happy" at the BRIT Awards tonight and at the Academy Awards on March 2. To date, "Happy" is the highest charting Oscar-nominated song since Eminem's 2003 hit "Lose Yourself," Billboard noted.
album cover courtesy of iTunes