Early in his career, Barri was a staff writer with Dunhill Records. He frequently collaborated with P.F. Sloan and the partners were responsible for the success of The Grass Roots and contributed largely to the band's first album. Barri also wrote and/or produced many other hit songs in the 1960s, including "You Baby" by The Turtles (in collaboration with P.F. Sloan), "A Must to Avoid" by Herman's Hermits and "Secret Agent Man" (the theme from the TV series Secret Agent) by Johnny Rivers.
After Dunhill was acquired by ABC Records, Barri stayed on in the 1970s as head of Artists & Repertoire (A&R) where he focused on signing and producing new artists, such as Bubblegum Pop group Bo Donaldson and The Heywoods. He collaborated with songwriters Dennis Lambert and Brian Potter on three albums for the Four Tops, which included the million-selling single "Ain't No Woman Like The One I Got". He also worked on several acclaimed albums by leading blues/soul singer Bobby Bland.
ABC Records was dissolved in 1979, after the label was sold off to MCA. Barri departed to become A&R chief at Warner Bros. Records, where he co-produced John Sebastian's 1976 album Welcome Back and produced Alan O'Day's 1977 #1 single "Undercover Angel". Barri also produced O'Day's follow-up single "Skinny Girls", which went to #1 in Australia. Barri moved again in 1982 to Motown Records where he produced The Temptations, among others.
In 1998, Barri joined Gold Circle Entertainment / Samson Records as a producer, and was promoted to senior vice president in 2001.
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