CELEBRATE THE RAINBOW: LGBT Icons and The Music That Promotes Pride and Tolerance

By Feature

June 2017 – Pride Month

Isn’t it just the perfect time for a playlist to help you celebrate this major social and cultural movement properly? After all, we could always use some inner strength ourselves. This month is not only about supporting the LGBT+ community but also to find love and peacefulness in our hearts.

Join your favourite musicians in supporting Pride and discover related songs you wouldn’t have ever guessed. Yes, some of these songs seem unrelated but have been chosen as gay anthems, while others speak about the issues straight-on. Unashamed sexuality, the search for acceptance, hard work, the power of love, all of these are frequently chosen topics.

Billboard’s Love Letters to the LGBTQ Community

To celebrate Pride Month, Billboard created an amazing project, asking several celebrities to write small “love letters”. Basically, the celebrities express their thoughts on love, equality and acceptance. Needless to say, the letters are heartwarming and it was difficult to choose a few lines that inspired us most. Yas, queen!

“When you love someone, you will cross the deep blue sea by swimming.”

“Be free. Be brave. Be proud.”

  • Ninet Tayeb

“I see it in the tear-streaked faces of two young girls in the audience. Their hair is wild and their eyes electric and they kiss.”

“I see it in the smile of a young trans woman in the mirror of a department store on Melrose Ave. She runs her hands along the fabric of her dress and gives a half-hearted twirl.”

  • Halsey

The Ultimate Love & Tolerance Playlist

1. Hozier – Take Me to Church

“The only heaven I’ll be sent to

Is when I’m alone with you

I was born sick, but I love it”

This song came out in 2014 and actually made a huge impact. It warmed our hearts and opened our eyes. While the lyrics are not necessarily about gay love, but about lovemaking in general and how it’s sometimes seen as immoral, the music video came out as a protest against Russia’s anti-LGBT policy.

2. Halsey – Strangers (ft. Lauren Jauregui)

“Said that we’re not lovers, we’re just strangers

With the same damn hunger

To be touched, to be loved, to feel anything at all”

Because in the end, that’s what we desire most. To love and be loved. This song depicts a Romeo & Juliet-type of relationship, but between two girls who met at a  wild party. Things were going great until the fear of judgement intervened.

3. David Bowie – Rebel Rebel

“You’re a juvenile success

Because your face is a mess

So how could they know?”

Despite some controversial statements, the world is still uncertain of Bowie’s sexual orientations. What we do know are the beliefs he shared with us. Well, this song emphasises the mystery that surrounded the artist. Perhaps not even Bowie himself knew…

4. Angel Haze – Battle Cry ft. Sia

“Money cannot buy

All the love that’s here tonight”

This song is about overcoming the hardships of life and making your dream come true. The chorus speaks about the importance of love, which can’t be replaced by anything. It made our list because two important LGBT promoters have joined forces.

5. Lady Gaga – Born This Way

“Don’t hide yourself in regret

Just love yourself and you’re set”

One of the most straightforward entries is Lady Gaga‘s gay pride anthem. We all know that society’s standards of beauty are ridiculous and Gaga dismisses them completely. The song is all about loving yourself and all of God’s creatures no matter the gender, race or sexuality

6. Against Me! – Transgender Dysphoria Blues

“You’ve got no hips to shake

And you know it’s obvious

But we can’t choose how we’re made”

The lead singer of this punk band, Laura Jane Grace was born Thomas James Gabel. The world was shaken when Laura came out as a transgender woman, in 2012. This song expresses the struggles of gender dysphoria aka not feeling comfortable with your birth-assigned gender. 

7. The Weather Girls – It’s Raining Men

“I’m gonna go out, I’m gonna let myself get,

Absolutely soaking wet!

It’s Raining Men! Hallelujah!

It’s Raining Men! Every Specimen!”

This catchy disco tune was written from the perspective of the female duo and created buzz due to objectifying men, in the late 70s. It was directed towards the gay community, which quickly embraced it as an anthem, playing it frequently in their bars. A similar fate had YMCA’s “Village People” and ABBA’s “Dancing Queen”.  

8. In This Moment – Natural Born Sinner

“So go ahead and point your finger

Tell me who to love is it him or her?”

This metalcore band’s lead singer, Maria Brink, states that she puts love above everything, even when facing judgement. No one can tell you who to love, just like no one can be responsible for your own decisions. Between us, not even you can tell yourself who to love.

9. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – Same Love

“Playing God, aw, nah, here we go

America the brave still fears what we don’t know

And “God loves all his children” is somehow forgotten”

This hip hop duo couldn’t be more on point. People fear the unknown and, therefore look with doubt upon the LGBT community. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis defend gay love and bash race wars despite the lack of support from most fellow rappers.

10. Franz Ferdinand – Michael

“Michael, you’re the boy with all the leather hips

Sticky hair, sticky hips, stubble on my sticky lips”

This song stood out due to its homoerotic lyrics. The lead singer-songwriter Alex Kapranos declared he was inspired by a lustful moment, which he witnessed between two of his male friends. The music video is quite abstract but focusses on the same theme.


Photo Sources: Oprah, MirrorIdolatorAutostraddleBuzzfeedDeviantartClipartist

Main Photo Source: DollyTheLlama

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