Hands Held High

Album: Minutes To Midnight (2007)

Songfacts®:

  • This song speaks out against the US government under the Bush administration, and is a call for citizens to take action. Issues addressed include The Iraq war, the disparity between rich and poor, and gas prices. Linkin Park vocalist Mike Shinoda described the song as a "big middle finger to George Bush." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jake - Albuquerque, NM
  • Singer Mike Shinoda in Kerrang! magazine: "Rick [Rubin] said to us that, if something sounded like it needed rapping, then we should try singing and vice versa. That's why this song has rapping on it."
  • Originally Linkin Park had not planned to perform this song at their June 2008 Milton Keynes gig, which was recorded for the band's live album Road to Revolution: Live at Milton Keynes. Mike Shinoda explained to Rolling Stone how this tune ended up as part of their set: "We had put that song in the set and took it out because the chorus has 10 voices singing on it, and live it just never sounded right. But during the Milton Keynes show, there was a fan in front of the crowd who had a sign that said "Play 'Hands Held High.'" Halfway through, I thought, we can't play the song because we aren't prepared - but I can give him the first half. So I just threw the verse in a cappella. In fact, we added that verse to the set, so that kid's sign essentially changed the set for the rest of the year. It was really cool."

Comments: 16

  • Allan Gregory Eronson from 99201I'm a giant fan of this song, great job Linkin Park, very touching song. Nice work!
  • Sheila from NevadaI remember Linkin Park playing this at a USO concert and many of us viewed it as a form of solidarity. After all, the entire album was created after Linkin Park visited with US Soldiers, Sailors, and Airmen and was written with common Servicemembers' perspectives in mind. Who do you think they are talking about in the lines 'Like they understand you/In the back of the jet/When you can't put gas in your tank'?

    Linkin Park wasn't 'playing to liberal media'; they were showing support for those of us serving in the US Military. The US Military fights for the US, not for a piece of cloth or out of feudal-like loyalty to any particular politician. The President is the Commander in Chief, but that doesn't mean we always agree with the sitting President. We are people, not machines, and we see being able to spend more time with our families as far superior for support than sending us off to die, become physically wounded, and to suffer severe mental trauma for the sake of a few politically preferred corporate interests in the US.
  • Taylor from You Wanna Know? Well... No..., WaThis is truly one of the best songs i have ever heard... I'm a tough kid that rarely ever gets emotional but this song brings me to tears almost every time i listen to it... And btw this is the only song that brings me close to tears... No other song or movie has ever done that to me... This is a great song.
  • Sioraf from Macroon, IrelandWhen the rich wage war it's the poor who die is a quote from Sartre. I thought at first when a red book was mentioned it was Chairman Mao or somebody.
  • Robert from North Platte, NeThe song is basically about the Iraq War, The scared government, and has a 9/11 tie-in or two... It's a very interesting song that goes deep within the body. It speaks the truth and allows people to open their eyes, hopefully realising that our presidents aren't getting braver, but more scared anf afraid as each new one comes in.
  • Thomas from Surabaya, IndonesiaI Love this song, because all of the band members singing "AMEN !". But, i also hate this song, because I heard "F*CK" on some Mike Shinoda's rap lyrics.
  • Brandon from Okc, OkI think it means that the speaker has informed you with his song and you have been reborn with a new interpretation of the world's situation
  • Corey from Richmond, VaBest song I ever heard. The only good song on the album. I prefer the old Linkin Park, Meteora and Hybrid Theory where the best albums, thier new music sucks. I want the old Linkin Park back.
  • Lilly from East Meadow, Nywhoops, meant Linkin Park!
  • Lilly from East Meadow, Nyi <3 Likin Park
    i also <3 Bush haters!!
  • Craig from Blenheim, OnI might be wrong but I belive that the the line "With hands held high into a sky so blue the ocean opens up to swallow you," is reffering to freedome like heve you ever seen someone on a movie or something after they have been held prisinor or something like that they reach for the sky the blue sky amost like an ocean to just swallow up their worries
    Craig,Lindsay, Canada
  • Ben from Gosford, AustraliaLOL "Global warming". It's caled Climate Change now and you know why? Because GW was proven to be crap to the point where the liberals and the environmentalists couldn't run with it anymore. Despire Al Gore-eque forecasts of our whole planet melting and polar bears drowning, this past year in Australia we endured the coldest winter in 50 years, and are currently experiencing the coolest, wettest summer in a long time. Right when "Cliamte Change" was meant to give us a hotter, drier summer full of bush-fires.
  • G from Dallas, TxI think that "With hands held high into a sky so blue the ocean opens up to swallow you," is referring to pollution and how the oceans should be pure and blue maybe??? I agree with Ben Gosford though.
  • Sam from Edmonton"With hands held high into a sky so blue the ocean opens up to swallow you" what does that verse mean?
  • James from Hollis, NhThis is an amazing song it speaks with true pasion about the issues of our day. oh and by the way if you really have a problem with global warming have to look at the facts http://www.fightglobalwarming.com/page.cfm?tagID=136
  • Ben from Gosford, AustraliaWow, hard-core, lol! Seriously, I am an LP fan, but this song just sounds like a lame attempt to gain cred amongst the liberal music industry by jumping on the "We hate Bush" bandwagon. I'd prefer the boys to stick to doing what they do well, which is writing songs about being angry at someone they know personally or feel let down by, and leave such selling out to people like Pink. Seriously, it seems these days if you want to appease liberal idiots with a Michael Moore view of the world, all you have to do is grab a mike and say "Bush is an idiot! Bush is Hitler! No more blood for oil, Che Guevara was cool, terrorists are all just misunderstood!" and the same idiots will love you for it.
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