June is Pride Month. It is an event that demonstrates that love is love, regardless of sexual orientation. And LGBTQ musicians have long challenged the mainstream's understanding of gender and sexuality for equal rights. Over the decades, they have released many albums about LGBTQ to stand together and show their support to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer equality. And to this day, musical artists continue to maintain their role as leading figures, striving for change and cultural awareness. Their impact on the progress of our society is immeasurable and is considered one of the most important and powerful representatives of the LGBTQ community. For these reasons, we thought it might be meaningful to present some LGBTQ musicians and their music to remember how we got where we are today and celebrate LGBTQ pride with pride, love, and happiness.
Here are some LGBTQ musicians who are shattering stereotypes with their songs and acts:
As a bisexual woman, Gaga has made numerous efforts for LGBTQ's rights. Her music, especially her second album Born This Way, is a milestone in LGBTQ pop culture. The lyrics of this song: "No matter gay, straight, or bi/ Lesbian, transgender life/ I'm on the right track, baby/ I was born to survive" are deeply intertwined with queer culture and the lives of LGBTQ youth.
Troy Sivan is an openly gay South African-born Australian singer. He publicly revealed his homosexuality on YouTube when he was 18 years and was open about his sexuality. He said he never intended to be a gay pop star, but he has noticed a change in who listens to his music. Portraying LGBTQ characters has always been a priority in all of his music videos. He released a song called "Bloom" and made a trilogy of videos for Blue Neighbourhood: Wild, Fools, and Talk Me Down to present many struggles that same-sex relation faces. And his new single "My My My!" opened a new era of his career and consolidated his status as a pop queer idol.
Kim Petras underwent gender transition surgery at the age of 16, which made her one of the youngest people to undergo the process. She is proud of her identity and wants to bring more awareness to the transgender community. She has been exploring how to maintain people's attention to music without diluting her transgender identity. And released her single I Don't Want It at All. The transgender singer and songwriter also participated in the 2018 Broome tour with Troye Sivan as the opening act. Her thoughts about becoming a transgender musician are: I hate the idea of using my identity as a tool. And she said, "It made me the person I am and that's a big part of me, but I think music is about your feelings and your fantasies, and it goes deeper than your gender or your sexuality.”
Janelle Monáe came out as queer in 2018 as she says: "I feel my feminine, I feel my masculine, I feel the energy that I can't explain." Being a black queer woman in America, she has fought against gender norms and released a music video "Make Me Feel" to clear statement of strength, freedom, and continued evolution: "Baby, don't make me spell it out for you/ All of the feelings that I've got for you/ Can't be explained, but I can try for you.” Everyone has the right just to be himself/herself.
There are still loads of other LGBTQ musicians who have achieved great success in music too, including Sam Smith (who showed that love songs don't have to be heteronormative to be beloved), Jason Mraz (who released Love Is A Four Letter Word album to show pure heart and soul), Miley Cyrus (who believes every man should be allowed the same rights and civil liberties), Elton John (one of the greatest music icons in the 20th century), Teddy Geiger (who has written for One Direction and James Blunt). And there are also Queen, Courtney Act, Freddie Mercury, Billy Gilman, Conchita Wurst, Mary Lambert, Lesley Gore, Prince, Adam Lambert, Ricky Martin, Steve Grand, Rita Ora, the list goes on and on.