Music and lyrics to drive home a point

Where the mind is not clear

And you are wondering why

‘Cause they look at you strangely

And condition your life

I am taught what love is

And what one should mind

I learn what hurt is

And lonely is my life

The head grows heavy

And the world is going round

I look for someone

And they are all not found


Give us love

Give us moments

Give us time

Not just tokens

No symbols of care

No symbols of air

Baby baby baby

It is time for us to dare

I take my little time

The moments and many nights

I see I am human

Touch, pain and the sighs

As the mind is now clear

And I stand for my rights

It’s not about lust

Or love or a cry

There is no point listening

To all their advice

Let us take what we wanted,

It is our feel for life

(Repeat Chorus)

So your mind is upheld

And we are not too shy

Just give us some loving

No reason to hide

We seek little rainbows

Not colours not lies

We don’t want the pot

Of gold not the high life

We are just simply loving

Making gay

Making life

Don’t throw us the dice

Until its coloured

With life

(Repeat Chorus)

This is the song Head Held High, a song that tells the poignant story of a gay individual.

A portrait of a homosexual person’s pain and struggles, the number is presented by a band called Friends of Linger, which inherently believes in the inclusion of such individuals in the larger community.

In a society that does not accept gays and lesbians and denies them their human rights, the band hopes that this song will drive home the message of tolerance.

I spoke to Sharif D Rangnekar, writer of the song and vocalist of the band, to know more.


Birth of the band

The idea was to get a chance to perform live on stage. It took shape when a few of us expressed a desire to perform while out on one of our karaoke nights. Thanks to Adhir Ghosh, a well known guitarist who was part of bands like Five8 and Kitchen Sink, we finally formed what is called the Friends of Linger. We then began to sing songs that had purpose — music that would send out messages of inclusion and tolerance which is what all of us believed in.

The song

This song is an ode to the gay rights movement in India and elsewhere. We were inspired by Rabindranath Tagore’s Where The Mind Is Without Fear. Fear is what sexual minorities live with.  The song is a story about the journey of a gay individual who lives and grows in a society that is overtly heterosexual, which is always in denial of the existence of homosexuals.

With some hard-hitting lyrics, it attempts to tell listeners what dilemmas such individuals go through and how they accept who they are. They need the confidence to demand what is theirs — basic human rights. We hope that more voices are raised in support of the marginalised LGBT community.

The reception

In just three days of the release, the reception has been amazing. It has been viewed by over 14,000 people across the world. The song has reached LGBT groups in Tampa and Vancouver! We even have young gay men in cities such as Bangkok calling the song an ‘anthem’ of sorts. All we ask for is the change in the attitude of the society!

A personal take

Homosexuality is god-given. It is as natural as heterosexuality. An assumption that majority rules is unfair and is a reflection of a society that believes might is right and therefore to bully or dominate is an acceptable form of violence. I think India’s view on democracy is under question at this point.

What’s next for band?

We are hoping more people share this track and word-of-mouth spreads awareness. We would be performing at different venues in the months to come and this song would be on our set list. We also plan to create more tracks related to social issues and love.

You can watch the video here

Friends of Linger is:

  • Vocals: Craig Cranenburgh, Devyani Shankar, Deepak Sharma, Robin Mathew, Sharif D Rangnekar, Smiti Malik, Sophie Jane Allen, Varun Kapoor.
  • Guitars: Adhir Ghosh
  • Bass: Steve Peter
  • Drums: Aveleon Vaz / Siddharth Jain
  • Keyboards: Shiv Ahuja / Rohit Gupta
Friends of Linger - a Delhi-based concept band

Friends of Linger – a Delhi-based concept band

 Smiti, Devyani,Sharif, Adhir 14

Published on July 19, 2014 in The New Indian Express. 

Categories: Articles- New Indian Express, Culture, Music & Dance | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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