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Watch Hayley Williams’ Acoustic Cover of SZA’s ‘Drew Barrymore’

Performance follows Paramore singer’s debut solo LP, Petals for Armor

Hayley Williams stripped down SZA's "Drew Barrymore" for an acoustic Instagram cover.


Hayley Williams stripped down SZA’s “Drew Barrymore” for an acoustic Instagram cover.

The Paramore singer adopted a smooth croon with subtle vibrato, switching between gentle fingerpicking and strums. She took a self-deprecating attitude toward the performance, muttering, “Whatever” at the end and captioning the video “self-serenades / amateur hour.”

“this was weeks ago,” she wrote of the cover. “April 11th, to be exact. have a few saved up. guess i’ve been holding out on yall. the only constant for me (besides limp ass, unwashed, unfixed hair) in the age of covid, is a guitar and free reign to mess up all my favorite songs. here’s ‘Drew Barrymore’ by queen @sza. please ignore my face.”

Williams released her debut solo LP, Petals for Armor, in early May. The album — which follows Paramore’s 2017 record, After Laughter — features “Why We Ever,” “Over Yet,” “My Friend,” Boygenius collaboration “Roses/Lotus/Violet/Iris” and recent single “Dead Horse,” which she paired with a video directed by Paramore bandmate Zac Farro.

In an Instagram statement accompanying “Why We Ever,” Williams detailed the mindset and creative process that catalyzed the song.

“In Dec 2018, I bought Pro Tools, an interface, and some speakers and decided to learn something new. These moments are from my first go at it (we’re talking out of time/phase/tune… etc!…).”

She continued, “I was at the lowest point I’d been in some time. My sadness shows. Now I look back and credit this night as being the beginning of a new season of my life, where I hold myself accountable for learning to love better. I’ve let myself down a lot in love. This was the start of recognizing my bad patterns and acknowledging that I’m ready to grow out of them.”