Indian-origin singer Ridi talks about Stop The B campaign; wants to collaborate with Taylor Swift
The pop singer is an active anti-bullying activist when she not busy making music
Ridi came to the forefront following the success of her debut single Top Guy. The Indian-origin singer started out her formal training in classical and jazz music before turning to pop.
Apart from music, Ridi is an active anti-bullying activist. She and her sister Vasundhara started the Stop The B campaign to fight against bullying. Former footballer Ronaldinho and world-renowned independent academics endorsed her campaign.
She was also invited to speak at the UNESCO world anti-bullying forum in Sweden. Following the release of her latest single Merry Go Round, the singer talks about her upcoming projects and her work as an anti-bullying activist.
What was the thought process behind your latest single Merry Go Round?
Merry Go Round means so much to me and I’ve put so much time and effort to get this right. Heartbreak, loneliness, love, joy, and many more feelings, are all emotions we experience from a young age and are ironically, the same emotions we experience when we’re older as well. So, in essence, we’re all just living on a ‘merry-go-round’.
The song explores the circular nature of life and the fact that no matter what age we are, no matter what phase of life we are in, what we go through and the difficulties we experience all come back around in different ways and different complexities. We may choose to forget who we are for a while and instead explore the world around us, but in the end, we will always remember who we are inside, and no matter what, no one can ever break us.
Actually, for a while, I was transferring to many schools and so that’s really when I felt like I was stuck on a merry-go-round. I felt like everywhere I went and anything I did it all would just come back to bite me and I just felt stuck!
Tell us about how you became an anti-bullying activist.
Stop The B is so important to me, and it’s the first anti-bullying platform by young people, for people, that I set up with my sister, Vasundhara Oswal. As much as 1 in 3 children have been bullied online, and with more time than ever spent on screens for school and social media, this problem is only set to grow. That’s why our campaign not only focuses on stopping bullying but also to stop being bystanders. We are encouraging young people to speak out and speak up when they see bullying or trolling, and to take a stand to help the people being bullied.
Alongside this, we are working with academics and professionals to conduct research and to make a real change to the way bullying is perceived and handled in schools and online. Unfortunately, there is such a strong stigma attached to talking about being bullied. I remember when people tried to bully me, I felt somewhat ashamed of speaking up about it because that would put me in the position of being the outcast or the weirdo! But I slowly realised that if we keep having this type of mentality, not only does it harm us but future young people who may have to experience similar circumstances!
Could you shed some light on your upcoming projects?
I have loved seeing the response to Merry Go Round and how people react to this track as I have given it so much of my energy and love. I’d love to see especially how this plays out on social media and see what people think there and how they engage and respond to the track. I have a few more tracks coming out shortly so can’t wait to start releasing those and then eventually I am thinking of doing some live music projects in London, which is where I am now studying engineering. All my future tracks have an Indian touch to them too, so I am so excited to share a piece of my culture with every future song I make and release.
Which is that one artist you would want to collaborate with and why?
Honestly, I don’t know. I would love to collaborate with someone like Sam Smith or Taylor Swift (who are both amazing songwriters and singers). But at the end of the day, somebody who respects my work just as much as I respect theirs would be great! I feel like that’s the recipe for a great song!