Discussion: Pharrell Hinting At a Solo Return for Gwen?


Though it’s been discussed at lengths in the past, and Gwen has stated before that she didn’t see herself going solo again, rumors and ideas are swirling that Gwen might have something up her sleeve. Billboard thinks she might.

After their surprise duet performance of “Hollaback Girl”, collaborator Pharrell mentioned how it’s the first time in nine months that he had seen Gwen and announced that she is “making her arrival back to the music industry.” It’s known that No Doubt did indeed work with Pharrell on new music last April along with others for a future release (which Adrian hinted at that might see the light of day by the end of the year!)

One of our most popular fan polls was your opinion of Gwen going solo again and over 55% of the votes wanted her to steer clear from another album of her own. We’ve expressed before how it might be pretty special of Gwen to reach out and do a collaboration or so possibly before the next No Doubt release.

Again, we’re not saying anything is or isn’t happening for sure, we just wanted to start some discussion!

Billboard — Gwen Stefani bestowed the 2014 Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival with one of its biggest surprises when she skipped onstage during Pharrell Williams’ set on Saturday night (April 12) to perform her Neptunes-produced hit “Hollaback Girl.”

Before she departed the stage after the song, Pharrell teased that the rare live appearance from Stefani was the start of a comeback effort for the singer, who has not released a solo album since 2006.

“Before she leaves, I have not seen her in nine months,” Pharrell told his audience after he and Stefani embraced onstage. “Look how amazing the queen looks as she is making her arrival back to the music industry.”

Stefani has not formally announced any plans for a solo comeback, but a Twitter post after the performance suggests that she enjoyed the stage return on Saturday night. “Feels good to be out of the cave #Cochella2014 @Pharrell gx,” she wrote.

The 2006 release of Stefani’s sophomore album, “The Sweet Escape,” was followed by a prolonged period of returning to No Doubt to work on the group’s sixth studio album, “Push and Shove,” which was finally released in September 2012. Stefani and Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale have welcomed three children since 2006, most recently welcoming their son Apollo Bowie Flynn last February.

41 Replies to “Discussion: Pharrell Hinting At a Solo Return for Gwen?”

  1. While I will support Gwen always, pretty much no matter what, I enjoy No Doubt about a billion times more than her solo or collaborative work. Who knows what the people in the music business and promotion think about it all but I’ve remained a No Doubt fan because of the band, in spite of the solo breaks and the long years without new music or tours by the band.

  2. I know it’s a totally unpopular opinion among ND fans, but yeah I think there are some hints of new solo stuff of whatever kind. At least some new collaborations or something like that. We’ll just have to wait and see, but personally I think that everything that has happened today is far more exciting than those few vague things Adrian said in that interview.

  3. This performance wasn’t about Gwen’s solo efforts but a nod to Pharrell’s music throughout the years. That’s how I see it.

    Obviously, the world won’t stop spinning if she decides to release another solo record. I would survive. That’s not the point. I’m also a big fan of her solo stuff. But at this stage it doesn’t make any sense. 1st they sorta abandoned the P&S era to focus on more studio material with No Doubt. They have several recorded songs already. 2nd The band, especially Tom and Adrian have hinted about playing together again.

    The only thing I can see Gwen doing at this point is a collaboration with another artist, possibly with Rita Ora.

    1. If anything, like you said, I could see her do a collaboration again before hitting the road with No Doubt. It would be a HUGE promo opportunity and I love anything Gwen touches musically.

      This performance just got me super excited (and I am/was a big fan of her solo work). If anything, it was probably a huge boost of confidence for her and it looked like she was having so much fun!

  4. I’m sorry but shes too old now to be a ”hollaback” girl. Meaning too old to do the pop thing. it would be so embarrassing to see he go down a madonna-type road trying to stay youthful. Her solo stuff was a place and time that has lonnnng passed. i mean can u imagine another “wind it up” at her age, come on! no disrespect gwen is our gwen but cooommme oooon

  5. Bob, that’s the best you can do, being ageist? What have you done this weekend?
    Well this weekend Gwen, who in less than two months ago gave birth to her third child, came out to sing a song and let the media into a frenzy. Not to mention that one of the musicians of the year labelled her as: “incredible, historical, most important, incredibly talented, fucking awesome, rad girl in the world”.
    Sorry, Bob, try again!

    1. Not wanting to get into it, but Bob wasn’t attacking Gwen at all. I think he was saying how going solo again could come across as silly to some (if the songs were on the juvenile side), nothing against her.

  6. Well, he did not stop ridiculing Madonna in the previous topic. I’m not a big fan of hers, but ageism bothers me a bit tbh. Nothing against Bob though.


  8. Exactly what jenny said. If Gwen released a solo disc tomorrow I’d be the first in line buying 3 copies. But to reply to ndlover pharrell did say “historical”–her past solo work is so untouchable and great, my opinion, she should leave it be

  9. Am I the only one who love loves No Doubt as a whole and solo Gwen? Persoanlly, I dont care who comes out with an album first, I just want some new music within the next 2 yrs or so.

    1. I’m with you, Vanessa! No Doubt just peaked my interest more (obviously because I’m a No Doubter for life) when they were working so hard last year on new material.

  10. BOB i bet ur an old man, old-fashioned, i’m absolutely sure Gwen can do it with no problems.. she still sings HOLLABACK GRL as good AS IN ’05

  11. I think gwen still has things in the early stages. I imagine she is thinking about releasing new solo music towards the end of the year. Also did anyone notice “Hollaback Girl” has been on the itunes top 300 chart the past week? Its currently at #274. Maybe its because of the similarities between Iggy Izalea’s new single “Fancy”

  12. In an interview on YouTube promoting P&S (she’s wearing the full lepord print suit and straight long slick hair)– she talked about how with age and getting older there’s songs she feels too old to sing (she was talking about Total Hate)—so what I bring up isn’t a concept Gwen herself doesn’t understand. I love Gwen, never did I attack or put down

  13. So how old is too old and who determines that? Only she can in my opinion. They are her songs and her vision and she can decide when she wants to stop it. I think there comes a point in a musicians career when their hits become “classics” and it’s acceptable for them to sing them at any age. Which is why Madonna can get away with performing Like a Virgin or Gwen doing Just a Girl or the Beastie Boys doing Brass Monkey (RIP MCA).

    Anyway, I am a ND fan first, but at this point I’ll take anything I can get so if solo work or collaborations are coming, then I will welcome them as long as it’s good material.

  14. I’ll take any Gwen I can get!

    As far as remaining age appropriate, I think Gwen has a pretty good taste level for these things. I could see great things coming from more collaborations. Regardless of who writes or produces I think Gwen infuses herself into it. I think she went a little astray with Breakin’ Up lol but forreal, this woman stays true to herself and I think she’ll continue to do that.

    I want to see Apollo!

  15. I sense more collaboration work ala Moby n Eve than a full scale solo album… Unless she’s been recording while she was pregnant which would be unusual but then again this is the busiest pregnancy she ever had lol.. Before she was chill around n float around with her maxi dress, now she pop fashion collaborations one after the other. I say we get another ” rocksteady” kinda album. Fashion n collab out on Fall. New album Spring Summer 2015

  16. I don’t think they are hinting at a solo album. It’s a difinate nod to the work that pharell did with the band before Gwen had to take the baby break. Now she’s back and it’s time for that music to come out and pharell is just supporting his friend.

  17. i think she’s going to do a one-two punch. maybe not a full on solo right now, but i can see her doing a collaboration, getting the ND album out, then heading right in on a solo. in that order.

  18. I think Gwen and Pharrell made total history!

    I honestly was starting to really wonder “Where IS Gwen?” “Is her baby boy ok?”

    And a part of me was thinking, why hasn’t Gwen been seen for so long..is it REALLY about baby weight and not allowing people to see her anything but perfect?

    Because Moms ARE mostly out of great physical shape and are totally sleep deprived with a newborn…

    For like a year!

    But to see her onstage, I was bursting with joy and pride for her…

    That she DID get back out there and she wasn’t as skinny as she was for P&S. She looks like a new Mom! But still in incredible shape…!!!

    And I am SO proud of her for knowing we love her for who she is! Her smile, her creativity, her drive, her authenticity…

    Gwen Stefani CANT age and will never be “too old” to sing anything!

    That’s what’s made the world fall in love with her…

    Her character, her charisma, her endless youth that is something that comes from the “inside”…

    Pharrell put it so perfectly when he said “Our Queen”!

    She has totally earned that title and will forevermore…

    And the boys of No Doubr always say, her success is their success, right?

    So bring on solo. Bring on Hollaback.

    Gwen, we adore you and we are SO proud of you!!!!!!! Just total pride to be a fan of such an incredible musical genius and artist!!!

  19. Although I have been a ND fan from wayyyyyyyy back I actually liked Gwen’s solo stuff.
    I really don’t know whether or not there will be another ND album,but if there is I can honestly say if it is anything like Push And Shove then I would rather another Gwen solo album.

  20. In an interview during the Lamb era, gwen stated something to the effect that she could only imagine singing this types of songs during that time period n doubt if she’d sing them again after she gets back with no doubt. Hence, the motivation to see her solo tour. anyways, she’s in 40s but look like she’s in her early 30s. And at the end of the day, no other can sing just a girl like Gwen

  21. Have u ever considered this could mean nothing? Just a special performance and nothing else. Can u imagine all Spice Girls fand going mental when all 5 got toghter for the Olympics since Victoria was therw? And where is her now? Retired from music and being a full time fashion designer. Not saying it’s the case here, buy it could happen.

    1. Cynthia, I do think that’s exactly what it was. I think, like Lindsay had stated, that Gwen was just performing with a friend for this special event. Of course it got everybody thinking because we were under the impression that most (if not all) of Gwen’s solo material wasn’t going to be performed again live.

      Just striking up conversation!

  22. I don’t think Gwen would be “too old” to sing pop-ish solo songs these days. Seriously, she was already in her late 30s when she released TSE, so where’s the difference in being in your late 30s or in your early 40s? And what about P&S? Hustlaaa hustlaaa? Was she too old to sing that?

    I still think that this performance means something. We have to remember that this was her first public appearance after her pregnancy. And she chose a solo performance of her biggest solo hit? Hm… If she just wanted to show the world that she’s still alive and doing ok, she could’ve just showed up at some red carpet event, or simply do an interview. But she chose a solo performance that now fuels (one again) the rumours about her going solo again. She’s not stupid, she knew this would happen. I definitely think it means something.

  23. Like I wrote in the shout box, that was a Pharrell gig, not Gwens. She just got up on stage to perform one of the best tracks produced by him. There were there other artists under the same circumstances, including Nelly, Snoop Dogg and others.

  24. This was Pharrell’s thing. Bottom line.
    Solo or ND, this is no indication. We’re still pulling at strings here guys.

  25. Maybe it’s not deliberate but what a way to make a comeback!!! It couldn’t get any better. I mean it could have been with band but I’m glad for lil moments like this that show the impact of Love Angel Music Baby!!!

  26. I don’t even know why I am bothering, but her marketing seem very much identical to how she was when she went solo. (re-doing HL…the perfumes, the cartoon, more about her clothing lines) So maybe this is to promote those projects well helping out Pharell? I don’t know. Or they are low maintenance projects with an infant. What I know is ND doesn’t seem to be doing much, they tried and it didn’t work enough. They are parents in their 40’s trying to run car pool, and make music on the side where it fits. The passion is on the kids, as it should be. Maybe we need to do a kickstarter for that unreleased material. 🙂 Bottom line I think there are far more complications in the lives of the band and extended family then releasing music and if a break is needed, thats respected.

  27. Well put it this way guys Gwen got up on stage with the Rolling Stones last year and that didn’t lead to anything.
    Gwen and Pharrell have been friends a long time but yes this was Pharrell’s thing.

  28. I think it says something that her first appearance after having her baby was to perform one of her biggest hits at Coachella. I’m not sure if ND or solo music will come first, but I think music is definitely a priority. Especially when Pharrell said welcome back to the music industry. I honestly would be happy with ND OR solo at this point.

  29. almost all of u didn’t understand what i meant about “age”, but thats ok. maybe im just one of those fans that isnt dying for any new music. i’m 110% content if no doubt or gwen never recorded another note, not because i dont absolutley love them but because there catalog and everything ND/Gwen has done IN THE PAST has been nothing less than ICONIC. I LOVE seeing them play for the PRESIDENT, Reunion tours, etc you know major events. I see this performance as nothing more than a nod to the great PAST that her and pharrell created. NOTHING more

    No Doubt tried with new music and you know what good for them they really tried but lets face it, they even pulled out early. Sorry no doubters but all things come to an end eventually

  30. That’s right BOB ND as a band can’t go on forever they will have to call it quits sooner or later.
    Things change and their priorities change, they all have families now and the kids are getting older.
    Tom,Tony and Adrian have their wives to look after the kids although Gwen has Gavin he is also busy with Bush.

  31. I really loved her solo career! And I will truly support her if she decides to go for it. But I’d much rather see another ND-album. I saw The Sweet Escape tour live, which I count as the happiest day of my life. And the only way to beat that day, would be to see No Doubt live. Please make a new album and then go on tour. Both my ears and heart aches to hear you, see you and feel you live. <3

  32. Aww Jonna, did you at least get to see Gwen bring no doubt out for the end of the sweet escape tour?? Were u at the Irvine shows??

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