As a young music listener, Ramesh Srivastava didn’t have many out gay artists to look up to — and that number dwindled even further as he became part of the indie world, both as a fan and musician. “I felt like I didn’t have … any kind of road map,” he tells SPIN.
Srivastava also “wasn’t that public about being gay” in the first era of Voxtrot, the indie-pop band he originally fronted from 2003 to 2010. But with the group now reunited and working on a new album, he feels it’s important to be “very, very public” and offer that road map himself.
“I think even just the act of being upfront and honest about it can actually be inspiring for somebody,” he says. “I have had people write on Instagram or write in to the website and say that that has been the case for them.”
Ultimately, being away from Voxtrot for so long changed his mindset. “I felt like I already had [some] notoriety or fame and lost it once,” he says. “So coming back into it, it’s like, the only way is the truth. I’ve already had that ego death experience, so it’s like, if you’re not telling the truth, what’s the point?”