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BARRETT YERETSIAN ON THE POWER
OF HEAVINESS
3/15/19

Every once in a while on this corner of the site we like to share a little wisdom from gifted songwriters about process. In this installment, the unreasonably talented Barrett Yeretsian talks about the power of heaviness in an excerpt from a fascinating piece he penned for ASCAP.

I admit it. I’m a sucker for heavy. I’m a metalhead trapped inside the body of a balladeer. I started off as a dolphin-faced (facial hair hadn’t sprouted yet) heavy/thrash metal drummer headlining LA’s Sunset Strip clubs with my band when I was 15. Fast-forward to some years later: I wrote and produced an emotional pop ballad called “Jar of Hearts”(performed by Christina Perri) which ended up being the #5 biggest pop song the year it was released. 

You might be wondering, what could possibly bridge that Grand Canyon-sized gap between the thrash metal drummer and the emotional balladeer? Heaviness.

Barrett goes on to outline five ways to bring this power to one's own work, starting with authenticity but also embracing chordal and melodic choices and other tactical matters. It's a thoughtful read and another example of how diving fearlessly into one's own passions and predilections as a writer can yield huge rewards.

Read the whole thing here.