hint they're gay Gay icons that are actually lgbtq+ wow no way!
Hayley Kiyoko’s entry has been updated to reflect the most recent identity disclosure by Kiyoko to ELLE: http://www.elle.com/culture/movies-tv/news/a47373/hayley-kiyoko-insecure-guest-role/?src=socialflowTW
I remember very distinctly the turning point of my music library. I was in the 7th grade, obsessed with IMVU, and discovered the emo scene. And even as I eased out of listening to post-hardcore and pop punk, I found music through MTVU and bandcamp. I couldn't (read: can't) stand Top 40. Wow it's so bad. Predictable, unoriginal, cookie-cutter. And that's obviously not my jam.
But there are a few artists in the pop genre that I can get behind and dig. And really the only way I can get behind it, is if it's either hella black or hella queer. And since I'm all about emerging, young artists, I thought I'd share with you some of the best LGBT+ artists to watch.
I first found Shura through her Touch music video. In the era of "strangers kiss for the first time" videos, it was very reminiscent of the structure and visuals. Except this wasn't awkward and pretentious. It was beautifully lit, beautifully synchronized to the melody, and beautifully queer with most of its pairings. The video is just mesmerizing in that subtle, sweet way.
Shura just released her debut album, Nothing's Real and has been on tour with Tegan & Sara (triple the gay) and M83. It's so nice to see her shining and gaining traction.
When Troye Sivan came out, I couldn't have loved him more. He is such a precious gem. His effortless fashion and coy sense of humor is just what pop music needs. (Is anyone else still shipping Troye and Tyler Oakley??) Troye's personal aesthetic is colorful, rad-sad boy and his music definitely gives us that.
I don't think any of us were truly ready for the masterpiece storytelling of the Blue Neighbourhood trilogy music videos. In case you haven't seen them yet, I'll just preface by saying: it's heartbreaking, lovely, and candid. Thankfully, Troye healed us with the magic of Youth so we could somehow scramble to recuperare from the puddle of mush we had become.
Identity: gay woman*
(protect this beauty, one of the few Asian pop stars in mainstream circulation)
I always struggle to figure out when my earliest queer inklings came about. But for me, which is still true today, I could never tell if I wanted to be someone or date them. Prime example: Hayley Kiyoko in Lemonade Mouth. It was the time that I was just growing out of Disney Channel, but I'm glad I stuck around for her. She was obviously the coolest character and the coolest actress and I was secretly smitten. How does one do it all?
While I am by no means a girl, I sure do got a lot of homo feelings. Hayley identifies as a gay woman and she is open and lovingly proud about her sexuality in her music: most of her bangers are about girls and they're absolute perfection. In a sea of other "out" queer artists that are still held to heteronormative expectations, she boosts femme x femme representation.
Since I am currently experiencing my very first definitive girl crush, since I've been ~knowingly~ queer, the hype could not have come at a better time. I am hooked on the Citrine EP and simply cannot wait for her next full length album. My fave artists of these three at the moment, by far.
These music videos are tear-jerking, gut-wrenching, girl-powered, and charming.
Honorary mentions: Soko, (2013-) Tegan & Sara, (that one song by) Demi Lovato, Miley Cyrus *the latter two are very guilty pleasures*
Enjoy some gay tunes,