Jahanvi Srinivasan's live performance at UCLA's "Spring Sing."
Jahanvi Srinivasan, a 4th-year psychology major at the University of California, LA, recently performed and won an award at the prestigious Spring Sing, the university’s largest annual alumni event that attracts over 10,000 people and several celebrity judges.
Srinivasan performed with Matheus Gorski, a 4th-year electrical engineering major at UCLA. The duo said they wanted to convey a simple message through an uncluttered song. For their performance, the duo won the “Best Overall Participation” award.
Titled, “Little Help,” Srinivasan, who wrote the song, said it was about asking for help during times of struggle – a message she hoped other students related to. By utilizing unadorned instrumentals and a straightforward message, she believed the audiences could connect with her.
Since its debut in 1945, Spring Sing has showcased UCLA’s most talented students performing song, dance and sketch comedy. The show attracts celebrities and scouts of all ages, who watch amazing performances by up-and-coming stars or hidden gems like Sara Bareilles ’03 and Maroon 5.
Srinivasan and Brazil-born Gorski met in a music ensemble class in 2018, in which they were grouped together to compose a song. At the time, Srinivasan had been considering auditioning for Spring Sing, but said she wasn’t a strong guitarist on her own. After working with Gorski and seeing his talent on the guitar, she asked him to accompany her for the performance.
“It’s not a super fancy song. It’s a simple melody, it’s a simple message,” Srinivasan said. “But I think it’s something that people don’t talk about that much and it’s something that is important to me and (Gorski).”
Learning music from when she was nine, Srinivasan comes from a pop music background, having been exposed to the genre on English radio stations in India. She said Gorski’s guitar-style helped elevate her simple song without making it over-the-top, as he would suggest subtle chord changes.
Srinivasan said her song was inspired by personal experiences. She felt sad and anxious during her second year of college, which was exasperated by home being so far away. She set out to convey her feelings through music. She said mental health is important to her, and that she felt other college students could relate to what the song is about – feeling downcast and not knowing how to feel better.
Srinivasan said she has recorded “Little Help” professionally at a studio and plans to release it soon. “Spring Sing is hopefully just the beginning and I plan to release my first single this June,” she said.