“Baraye” becomes anthem for freedom

As Iran enters its third week of demonstrations against the Islamic Republic, after Mahsa Amini’s recent death, a protest song called Baraye has become the anthem of this rebellion.

The Iranian pop singer Shervin Hajipour was arrested on September 29 by Iranian security forces after his single Baraye was accused of spreading anti-Government propaganda. The song was published on Shervin’s Instagram account and it immediately went viral, reaching 40 million views in less than 48 hours.



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Un post condiviso da Shervin Hajipour (@shervinine)

The lyrics to the song are based on a collage of tweeted messages from Iranian citizens explaining the reasons behind their protest against the Islamic Republic.  Each line begins with “Baraye”, which translates to “For” or “Because of” in Farsi. Hajipour sings verses such as: For the students and their future”, “for my sister, your sister and our sisters” and “for women for life for freedom”.

The song channels the rage and pain felt for decades by many Iranians, to the point that Baraye has become the anthem of these protests. Videos online have shown the song being blasted out of cars in the city of Tehran, furthermore, tapes have captured the song being sung by Iranian teenage schoolgirls whilst showcasing their unveiled hair, and by many protesters from all over the world such as London, Washington and Strasbourg as an act of solidarity towards the Iranian cause.  

UK-based Muslim, Miah Mussamoth, 19, says: “It is a way of speaking up for all the women and the things that are happening in Iran. As long as it’s not bringing religion into it I feel like it’s fine because it doesn’t say anything about Islam.”

The singer has now been released on bail and issued a statement on Instagram: “I made this song because I wanted to show sympathy with people who were feeling frustrated towards society… like most artists do, who have all shown sympathy.”

@depreshunluv♬ original sound – heck

Currently, “Baraye” has received 95,000 nominations for best song for social change for the next Grammy awards. 

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