Hold Your Head Up

Album: All Together Now (1972)
Charted: 5 5
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • This was the only US Top 40 hit for Argent, who were named for their keyboard player Rod Argent, previously a member of The Zombies. This song was written by Chris White, who was The Zombies' bass player.

    Argent performed the song on the British TV show Top Of The Pops, and attracted a much wider audience as a result. In Creem magazine, July 1972, their guitarist Russ Ballard, who sang lead on this track, explained: "People are getting a shock when they realize that not all of our numbers are like 'Hold Your Head Up.' We're attracting a lot of people who've seen us on Top Of The Pops – people who would normally dismiss us as being just another progressive band.

    The song was written for us by Chris White who was in the Zombies and who now produces us as well as being a co-writer with Rod. Originally it was just another album track but CBS chose it as being suitable for a single. I would say that Chris has adapted his writing recently to the way we play on stage. Even now with 'Hold Your Head Up,' disc jockeys talk over part of the introduction because it's a bit distasteful to mother's ears!"
  • The radio version was about 2 minutes shorter than the album version, which runs 6:18.

Comments: 12

  • Jj from CanadaHe sings "hold your head up, woman" not "hold your head up, oh." I recall Argent saying the song was sung in support of what was then called the women's liberation movement. This is obvious from the lyrics.
  • Pj from CaI was bullied in grammar school, someone always wanting to fight with me. I used to hear this playing on the school bus and it helped give me strength. I love the message of this song, as I interpret it!
  • Botticellireject from ScotlandThe lyric is WRONG. Rod Argent said it is “Hold your head up, Woman” look at the rest of the song...
  • Beagle Dad from United StatesI heard Rod Argent say the lyric was “Hold your head up woman”
  • Jj from Berkeley, CaThis song saves my suicidal little butt when I was a 12 year old queer misfit in the 'burbs. "If they stare, just let them burns their eyes on you moving... hold your head up."
  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenMy daughter was a preemie and had issues keeping her head upright for her first year. As she got better at it, my wife and I would sing "Hold your head up, Heather!" and she would laugh.
  • Soandso from NolaThese lyrics are not correct. "Hold your head up, oh" should be "Hold your head up, woman".
    Which lends itself to the meaning: men empowering women.
    As for lead, "Lead vocal duties were shared between Ballard, Rodford and Argent" on all songs, and Ballard on this one; per their wikipedia page:
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argent_(band)
  • Bill from UsWhat the comment below should say is = On June 11th 1972 "Hold Your Head Up" by Argent entered the charts and radio stations proceeded to play it over and over at least 200 times a day the entire summer! At least that's what it seemed like....!
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn June 11th 1972, "Hold Your Head Up" by Argent entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #82; and on August 20th it peaked at #5 (for 2 weeks) and spent 15 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on its 15th and final week on the Top 100 it was at position #42 and then it fell off the chart completely...
    The last time Rod Argent was on the Top 100 was in 1969, when as a member of the Zombies, "Time of the Season" peaked at #3 on March 23rd, 1969.
  • Dave from Dschulps@premiereradio.com, CaWho sings lead on this? Is it Russ or Rod?
  • Jack from Mesa, Azthere's so few lyrics it just seems to me like a don't-let-the-world-get-you-down song... Pretty good though...
  • Steve from Whittier, CaHmm..no comments..I've always wondered, and no one has siad, what this is about. Apparently, it's about a guy whose girl's expected to leave but is leaving to tell off anyone else, or is expected to stay and leaves...it's a mystique to the song there, I hope somebody elese would write in. Radio, single version 3:38. except for the 2:53 DJ edit. Favorite line, the opener for second/third-"And if they stare...just lets them burn their eyes.." veyr sadistic..trying using Peter Lorre's
    voice for that.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

A Monster Ate My Red Two: Sesame Street's Greatest Song Spoofs

A Monster Ate My Red Two: Sesame Street's Greatest Song SpoofsSong Writing

When singers started spoofing their own songs on Sesame Street, the results were both educational and hilarious - here are the best of them.

Trans Soul Rebels: Songs About Transgenderism

Trans Soul Rebels: Songs About TransgenderismSong Writing

A history of songs dealing with transgender issues, featuring Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Morrissey and Green Day.

John Doe of X

John Doe of XSongwriter Interviews

With his X-wife Exene, John fronts the band X and writes their songs.

Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat World

Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat WorldSongwriter Interviews

Jim talks about the impact of "The Middle" and uses a tree metaphor to describe his songwriting philosophy.

Frankie Valli

Frankie ValliSong Writing

An interview with Frankie Valli, who talks about why his songs - both solo and with The Four Seasons - have endured, and reflects on his time as Rusty Millio on The Sopranos.

Dean Friedman - "Ariel"

Dean Friedman - "Ariel"They're Playing My Song

Dean's saga began with "Ariel," a song about falling in love with a Jewish girl from New Jersey.