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Serena Ryder puts a "Stompa" on her "clinical" depression

@graffonmusic, Facebook.com/Gary Graff on Music

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Serena Ryder is back and better than ever.

Well, certainly feeling better than ever.

After promoting her 2008 album "It's O.K.," Ryder ironically went "through a really severe clinical depression. I was putting a little too much weight on myself," especially in trying to write some new music. It took awhile, but she ultimately worked her way through it.

"I think a lot of us want to be open and honest and relate to each other as human beings," Ryder, 30, explains. "We want to find some sort of answers to what we're doing and why we're here. I was trying to articulate what I'd been through and what I'd gone through in my music, instead of having fun and just enjoying the music.

"Finally I realized that what I wanted to do more than anything else was just have a good time and write music for the sake of writing music and sing songs for the sake of singing songs."

That, in turn. led to "Stompa," the first single from Ryder's latest album -- "Harmony," which is due out in September after being released last fall in Canada. It was Top 10 hit in her homeland, buoyed by use on TV's "Grey's Anatomy," and has spent six weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard AAA charts.

"That song brought me to a whole other level," Ryder notes. "There was no weight in writing 'Stompa.' I just came in with a guitar riff and showed it to Jerrod (Bettis, co-writer and producer) and literally within three hours we had the song written and finished. There was no preconceived idea or expectation. We just wrote something.

"And it just works. We had a really great energy working together, and that spared the rest of (the album). It felt like you've been slapped in the face, but in a good way. It's exactly what I needed at the time."

Serena Ryder performs with Metric and Jessica Hernandez & the Deltas at 93.9 Riverfest on Thursday, June 13, at the Fillmore Detroit. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $9.39-$35. Call 313-961-5450 or visit www.livenation.com.

Web Site: www.livenation.com

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