Exclusive Premiere: Rohan Solomon’s Fierce, Poignant Anthem ‘We Demand Change’
The New Delhi/New York singer-songwriter juxtaposes a gunshot sample with acoustic guitar and his pop melodies on his latest release
When Rohan Solomon was working as a sound engineer and producer in New York, he saw and understood inclusivity like never before. “I became friends with people of multiple races and various sexual orientations and it just didn’t matter who you were. You were accepted and loved in that space,” he says.
The New Delhi singer-songwriter doesn’t gloss over the fact that he was subject to and a witness to racism. “At that moment, I used to just wish that somehow I hope this horrible person changes his/her way of thinking,” he says. His own way of actioning change comes in the form of “We Demand Change,” the heartening yet angry new song that’s also received a music video.
On his latest song, Solomon brings together acoustic guitar, a string orchestra and a beat fashioned out of samples of stomping feet and a gunshot. Over it, the artist sings yearningly about discrimination and adds a rallying chorus of unity. The gunshot and stomps signify a sense of “seriousness and darkness” for Solomon. He adds, “I wanted that because the song stems from some true horrors that we’ve read in the news. It talks about something very serious and very real.”
The track’s music video is a no-frills, from the heart showcase, directed by Solomon using an iPhone and edited into a lyric video by American filmmaker, photographer and musician Cheilean Jacob. Solomon says he wanted to stay as broad as possible in his lyrics rather than refer to anything specific. “I sincerely hope that I don’t alienate any section of society. I’ve tried my best not to point fingers at anyone in particular. The last thing I want is for my song to create havoc. I’d like for it to promote peace,” he says.
There’s another single coming up later this year and a Christmas song planned in December. Solomon is also planning collaborations with two different organizations. “I haven’t put out an ‘original’ Christmas song since the Cyanide [his rock band] days, which is why it makes this one extra fun for me,” he adds.
Watch the video for “We Demand Change” below. Stream the song here.