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Stacy Barthe's 'BEcoming' Is A Story Of Near-Death And Rebirth

Stacy Barthe's debut solo album is called <em>BEcoming</em>.
Stacy Barthe's debut solo album is called <em>BEcoming</em>.

The world came close to never hearing Stacy Barthe — her voice, anyway. By age 25, Barthe was taking off as a songwriter, landing credits on albums by Britney Spears and Rihanna. But as she looked at the cover models dominating pop music, the images of Beyoncé and Taylor Swift plastered on billboards, a damning thought took shape in her mind: You don't belong here.

"I was, like, 380 pounds at the time," Barthe says. "And I was just like, 'Nobody wants to hear this.' I just never really believed that anybody wanted to hear me sing. So that's why it took all this time."

The new album BEcoming is Barthe's full-length debut as a performer. Following a series of EPs — as well as some pronounced weight loss — it reads like a diary of her ascent out of dark times, including a low point described in the opening track, "My Suicide Note (Intro)."

"It was a really coward attempt," she says. "I was 25 years old and I didn't find any real purpose in my life to keep living. So I took all these pills in my medicine cabinet, and I was hoping to not wake up. And I woke up the next morning like, "Am I seriously still here?'"

It was an awakening in more ways than one. Barthe is almost 30 now, but says she often feels like she's navigating the world as a newborn.

"I think the common denominator between all human beings is the human condition," she says. "You know, there's so many layers to that: There's sadness, there's depression, there's frustration. You have happy moments, but most of us go through life trying to figure it out."

Hear more of Stacy Barthe's conversation with NPR's Arun Rath at the audio link.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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