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Shirley Manson balancing acting with solo work

Shirley Manson poses backstage at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York March 13, 2006. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

LOS ANGELES (Billboard) - Garbage’s Shirley Manson will return to the recording studio next month to lay down solo material she’s been working on for the past several months.

Manson is now part of the cast of Fox’s “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles,” but doesn’t anticipate the role getting in the way of her music career. “I’ve got a lot of material,” she says. “We’ll see if I manage to pull it off.”

On the show, Manson portrays Catherine Weaver, a high-powered CEO with a secret. Yep, ala Arnold Schwarzenegger and Robert Patrick, she’s a Terminator that’s been sent from the future to kill John Connor.

“I think musicians in general tend to be quite sensitive, and that helps when you’re trying to interact with others on screen,” Manson says, citing Tim McGraw, Courtney Love and David Bowie as musicians she admires who have jumped to acting.

And while Manson says she’s trying to branch beyond her music persona to challenge herself, she doesn’t intend to have a complete career upheaval. “I don’t think that once you’ve been in a successful band that you can shed that image,” she says. “Being in a band, it’s like being in a minor Mafia. You never really get out alive.”

The second season of “Connor” premiered on September 8, and was seen by 6.3 million viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research.

Manson said Garbage bandmate Butch Vig sent her a quick e-mail upon her screen debut that read: “F---ing awesome, I love it, queenie!”