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Meet the Writer: Deni Barth

A passionate music fan with a lifelong love of writing.

Adam Shay

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Deni Wray.

Whether it’s a first or tenth time, having a conversation with a favorite artist or band is an indescribable feeling only a fan can understand. 24-year-old Ohio native Deni Barth knows the feeling: she has met Andy Biersack, the lead singer of the hard rock group Black Veil Brides (BVB), twice.

With a unique story of selling her Alternative Press Music Awards ticket and believing it was a scam, to trading her ticket for a Warped Tour wristband, resulting in a meet and greet with Biersack, Barth loves sharing this memorable tale. 

“I just really enjoy telling people that story because I’ve had a lot of young fans of different bands tell me they will never get to meet the musician or artist that means so much to them,”  Barth said. “So when I tell them that story it’s like ‘don’t ever lose hope in that,’ because I totally thought it was going to be a scam.”

With little to no exposure on mainstream radio, BVB aren’t particularly well known and it has left Barth jaded. She is immersed in the culture of BVB fans and their dedication to the 15-year-old Cincinnati-based band. Barth feels as if they have the potential to receive more exposure through sales. Biersack ventured out briefly from the hard rock and has incorporated more mainstream trends into his solo album.  

“The lead singer Andy has a solo album that is a much lighter sounding album,” Barth said. “Has a bit more pop element to it. So, I feel like it does deserve more of a spotlight sometimes, but it’s not really something I think about because I’m so into it myself.”

Barth discovered “my music” at the age of 14 with BVB, the first band she really felt a connection with, she says. In the age of streaming, access recorded music is constant. There is a definitive line between the headphone connection and feeling the pulsating bass of loud amplifiers, surrounded by passionate fans. /

“I love listening to live music. Never on a CD though, actual live music,”  Barth said. “There’s just something special to me about live music and being in a concert setting.”

Barth said she loves any type of concert setting, but festivals are her favorite for a couple reasons. At festivals, she loves seeing thousands of eager fans, spanning out like a sea of head bobs and waving arms. She also likes having the option to see multiple bands on separate stages. Nevertheless, an intimate setting for a show is wonderful as well, she says. 

Since her parents are older and being the youngest step-sibling of three brothers, Barth grew up listening to classic rock bands and artists: The Doors, Eagles, Queen, and Elton John from her parents collections. Her two oldest brothers on her dad’s side, and her grandma from West Virginia,  were responsible for country music. playing a part in her background

Things are now coming full circle: Barth has returned the favor to her parents by introducing modern music to them. Despite mainstream radio consisting of pop, hip-hop, and country, there are newer bands, like Greta Van Fleet, that resemble older-time rock n’ roll. 

“I feel like I’ve exposed both of my parents to a lot of different modern music that they would never have heard without me,” Barth said. “I feel like older generations are stuck listening to the same music because they don’t know how to go about finding new outlets of music.”

Her other brother on her mom’s side has musical taste more similar to Deni’s. Her older brother’s genre is late 90s’/early 00s’ alternative and punk, listening to bands like Cake, Reel Big Fish and Rob Zombie. Both Barth and her brother enjoy Ninja Sex Party, a music comedy duo she saw in concert last year. 

Both music and writing have been a part of her life from a young age. When she was ten, she began writing poetry and that craft has remained an important part of her life 14 years later. Speaking of 14 years later, A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out by Panic! At The Disco came out, which was Barth’s desert island disc challenge: an incredible choice, I may add.

“With having that love and passion for just general writing, then also realizing I can incorporate music into that, is just taking it to the next level for me,” Barth said. 

All of Deni’s articles for College Media Network are available here. 

If you obsess over singers and bands, and are one of those people who make a playlist for every occasion, join CMN’s Music Journalism Course and get real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to music industry insiders, and a great place to display build your portfolio. Get all the details on the Music Journalism Course here.

Adam Shay is a graduate from Eastern Illinois University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism, During his four years at EIU, he wrote for the Daily Eastern News for two and a half years, covering multiple sports, news events, and writing feature stories. He was also on the rugby club team for two years, a member of the Society of Collegiate Journalists, and finished third in applying for his commencement speech. Currently, he runs a public relations system for a bar in Palatine, Illinois, and in his free time, he is always learning about music, sports history, and American history.

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