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Damon Albarn penned more than 60 songs for solo debut

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Jan 21, 2014 | 7:47am EST

British musician Damon Albarn wrote more than 60 songs for his debut solo album, including one track about a baby elephant. The Blur frontman's first independent record, Everyday Robots, will be released in April (14), ahead of his solo set at the Latitude festival in Britain over the summer (14). Albarn teamed up with producer Richard Russell for the project, and handed over plenty of potential songs for his consideration. The Gorillaz star tells Rolling Stone, "It was very cathartic (writing the album). It is my narrative, and my voice and my songs. I started off giving Richard a lot of songs, 60 or 60-plus - he had the editorship." Albarn is glad he gave control to Russell, as the producer allowed him to record a quirky song about an elephant. He adds, "Hence a song like Mr. Tembo, which I never would have considered recording... it was for a baby elephant I met in a place called Mkomazi in Tanzania. It was recently orphaned and walked onto this aerodrome; the people I know took it in and called it Mr. Tembo. I was there, and I met this little elephant, and he was very sweet. I sang it to him. It was recorded on a phone, and in a light-hearted moment, I put it on a list for Richard. He said, 'I'd really like you to try that,' so I did."

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