Avant Gardener

Album: The Double EP: A Sea of Split Peas (2013)


  • This song about a slacker who has a panic attack while cleaning up her yard was penned by Barnett on the beach. She told NME: "As a song I was really proud of it. But I thought everyone would hate it! Just because, aw, it's a really stupid song. It's so long and has no chorus and it's not catchy, you know?"
  • The lyrics of this half-spoken song describe an event that actually happened. Barnett was feeling ambitious one day and decided to do some gardening. It went horribly wrong when she started having trouble breathing and had a panic attack. An ambulance was called and she ended up in the hospital. She explained to Uncut magazine: "'Avant Gardener' is all true, apart from the adrenaline into the heart, like in Pulp Fiction. I just got adrenaline in the top of the thigh... But in the heart sounded so much more exciting."
  • Although this song recounts a real experience, Barnett does it with a sardonic wink, as it expresses that feeling you get when you finally find ambition and it fails miserably, making you wonder if you're better off staying in your comfort zone.
  • The music video quickly got over a million views on YouTube and led to an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The video is a non sequitur, with Barnett playing an awkward match of tennis with her band.


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Stand By Me: The Perfect Song-Movie Combination

Stand By Me: The Perfect Song-Movie CombinationSong Writing

In 1986, a Stephen King novella was made into a movie, with a classic song serving as title, soundtrack and tone.

Chris Tomlin

Chris TomlinSongwriter Interviews

The king of Christian worship music explains talks about writing songs for troubled times.

Dr. John

Dr. JohnSongwriter Interviews

The good doctor shares some candid insights on recording with Phil Spector and The Black Keys.

David Bowie Leads the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Long-Haired Men

David Bowie Leads the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Long-Haired MenSong Writing

Bowie's "activist" days of 1964 led to Ziggy Stardust.

90s Metal

90s MetalFact or Fiction

Test your metal - Priest, Maiden, and Beavis and Butt-head show up in this one.

Paul Williams

Paul WilliamsSongwriter Interviews

He's a singer and an actor, but as a songwriter Paul helped make Kermit a cultured frog, turned a bank commercial into a huge hit and made love both "exciting and new" and "soft as an easy chair."