Shervin Hajipour appeared shocked when he heard Jill Biden, the wife of US president Joe Biden announce that he won a Grammy for his viral protest anthem “Baraye” during the 65th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony. Seen on the Grammy’s Live screen, the singer wiped his tears, feeling honored to have received the Best song for Social Change Special Merit Award. The win is quite significant as the song holds a special place among the Iranian community with it being the anthem of one of Iran’s biggest protest movements.
Back in 2022, Iranians had taken to the streets to protest the death of Iranian-Kurdish Mahsa Amini who was arrested for not wearing her hijab properly. Amini died while in custody and what followed was a powerful unanimous rage among the Iranian community, sparking one of the country’s biggest protest movements. Hajipour’s song “Baraye” acted as a figurative voice of the people, capturing the public’s anger against Iran’s morality police and their call for women’s freedom. Its lyrics were written by compiling together Tweets posted by angry Iranian citizens proving that it was truly a song by the people.
Being such a powerful song, it instantly became viral but what followed was the arrest of Hajipour who is currently facing charges of ‘propaganda’.