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ONR releases new song and video, ‘Human Enough’

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ONR (Photo Credit: Brian Ziff)

Just because we’re all staying “safer at home” doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy new music.

Scottish singer/writer/producer ONR (pronounced “honor”) has done his part to provide this essential service by sharing the latest new track and video from his forthcoming “Must Stop” EP, which is due on May 15 from Warner Records. The new song, “Human Enough,” was co-written with Dave Bassett (Bishop Briggs, Rachel Platten) and Sam Hollander (One Direction, Katy Perry), and co-produced by ONR and Mark Crew (Bastille, Rag’N’Bone Man).

Born Robert Shields, the rising songsmith spent his childhood being inspired (not to mention bored) at his family’s sheep farm in the Scottish Highlands, on cliffs overlooking the North Sea; as a means of escaping the rural isolation, he began writing and performing his own songs around the age of 12 or 13, teaching himself piano on a battered instrument missing half its keys that he uncovered in the family shed. While still in school, he won a songwriting competition judged by Coldplay’s Chris Martin, and was later offered a place at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, founded by Sir Paul McCartney. He declined the invitation.

Instead, the young musician honed his craft – which he was intent on perfecting – on his own, and his early, self-released efforts caught the attention of a manager who flew him out to LA – his first time out of Scotland ever – culminating in a label war. Still not feeling ready for the heat of success, mentally or physically, he turned it all down again.

He continued to fine-tune his songwriting and perfect his live show, performing hundreds of gigs across Europe. Eventually, he found himself touring with acts like Bastille, while immersing himself amongst Scottish hit-makers Lewis Capaldi and Calvin Harris. Now, Shields says he has finally figured out who he is as a songwriter, and is making music that is true to himself – something of which he says he is “proud.”

Of the new track, ONR explains, “I liked the idea that ‘being human’ wasn’t a defining quality, but rather a sliding-scale… that you could consider yourself ’not human enough’ to be someone else’s equal. The video is dark, confused, frustrated; it exists within this fantastical alternative reality where the concept of being human is (literally) different from our own.”

“Human Enough” is the second track to be released from “Must Stop,” coming on the heels of the debut song, Sober.” The upcoming EP features four sparkling synth-pop gems with an anthemic rock undertow that are almost entirely written, played and self-produced by ONR in his home studio in Dumfries and Galloway.

You can watch the new video below.

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Pride Run 5K nearly sold out

Front Runners annual event to be held at Congressional Cemetery

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Front Runners Pride Run 5K (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

Sign up now to join the annual Front Runners Pride Run 5K. The event is 85 percent sold out. The event is Friday, June 7 at Historic Congressional Cemetery.

Join more than 1,000 runners and walkers as they kick off Pride weekend 2024. When registering please consider donating to one of the event’s charity partners. This year’s race proceeds benefit local LGBTQ and disenfranchised youth organizations, including the Team DC Student-Athlete Scholarship, Wanda Alston Foundation, Blade Foundation, Ainsley’s Angels of America (National Capital Region), Pride365 and SMYAL. Visit DCPriderun.com to register or to donate.

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Civil rights commission to celebrate queer life

Panel discussion to discuss progress in LGBTQ rights

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(Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

The Maryland Commission on Civil Rights will host “Celebrating Progress and Centering Joy” on Thursday, June 6 at 12 p.m. virtually.

This event is a virtual panel discussion, as the commission celebrates the progress in LGBTQIA+ rights and center joy within the community. 

This event is free and more details are available on Eventbrite.

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Calendar

Calendar: May 17-23

LGBTQ events in the days to come

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Friday, May 17

Center Aging Friday Tea Time will be at 2 p.m. on Zoom. This is a social hour for older LGBTQ+ adults! Guests are encouraged to bring a beverage of choice. For more information, email [email protected]

Go Gay DC will host “LGBTQ+ Speed Friending” at 7 p.m. at Puro Gusto. This fun weekly event brings the DMV area LGBTQ+ community, including Allies, together for delicious food and conversation. Attendance is free and more details are available on Eventbrite.

Saturday, May 18

LGBTQ People of Color Support Group will be at 1 p.m. on Zoom. This peer support group is an outlet for LGBTQ People of Color to come together and talk about anything affecting them in a space that strives to be safe and judgment free. For more details, ​​visit thedccenter.org/poc or facebook.com/centerpoc.

Go Gay DC will host “LGBTQ+ Brunch” at 11 a.m. at Freddie’s Beach Bar & Restaurant. Attendance is free and more details are available on Eventbrite.

Sunday, May 19

Go Gay DC will host “LGBTQ+ Dinner” at 7 p.m. at Federico Ristorante Italiano. Attendance is free and more details are available on Eventbrite.

AfroCode DC will be at 4 p.m. at Decades DC. This event will be an experience of non-stop music, dancing, and good vibes and a crossover of genres and a fusion of cultures. Tickets cost $40 and can be purchased on Eventbrite

Monday, May 20

Center Aging: Monday Coffee & Conversation will be at 10 a.m. on Zoom. This is a social hour for older LGBTQ+ adults. Guests are encouraged to bring a beverage of their choice. For more details, email [email protected]

Go Gay DC will host “Out and About in Shirlington LGBTQ+ Happy Hour” at 6 p.m. at Palette 22. About 30 LGBTQ folk are expected. Palette 22 offers modern street food spanning the globe served in a bustling art studio & gallery atmosphere. This event is free and more details are available on Eventbrite

Tuesday, May 21

Pride on the Patio Events will host “LGBTQ Social Mixer” at 5:30 p.m. at Showroom. Dress is casual, fancy, or comfortable. Guests are encouraged to bring their most authentic self to chat, laugh, and get a little crazy. Admission is free and more details are on Eventbrite.

Bi Roundtable will be at 7 p.m. on Zoom. This event is an opportunity for people to gather in order to discuss issues related to bisexuality or as Bi individuals in a private setting. For more details, visit Facebook or Meetup

Wednesday, May 22

Job Club will be at 6 p.m. on Zoom. This is a weekly job support program to help job entrants and seekers, including the long-term unemployed, improve self-confidence, motivation, resilience and productivity for effective job searches and networking — allowing participants to move away from being merely “applicants” toward being “candidates.” For more information, email [email protected] or visit thedccenter.org/careers.

Asexual and Aromantic Group will be at 7 p.m. on Zoom. This is a space where people who are questioning this aspect of their identity or those who identify as asexual and/or aromantic can come together, share stories and experiences, and discuss various topics. For more details, email [email protected]

Thursday, May 23

The DC Center’s Fresh Produce Program will be held all day at the DC Center for the LGBT Community. No proof of residency or income is required. For more information, email [email protected] or call 202-682-2245. 

Virtual Yoga with Charles M. will be at 7 p.m. on Zoom. This is a free weekly class focusing on yoga, breathwork, and meditation. For more details, visit the DC Center for the LGBT Community’s website.

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