The Parental Rights in Education Bill, dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” Bill by LGBTQ+ activists, recently passed the Florida Senate and House. If this hugely damaging bill becomes law, it would limit what classrooms can teach about sexual orientation and gender identity. Indeed, it would essentially erase the existence of the LGBTQ+ community from Florida pedagogy.
There is no doubt about it: if passed, this law will harm queer youth. It perpetuates the idea that students should be ashamed and suppress who they are. Additionally, LGBTQ+ youth already face a higher risk of bullying, depression, and suicide. A law like this will only serve to further isolate young homosexuals.
Although Gov. Ron DeSantis didn’t explicitly say he would sign the bill, he did say he supported it.
So, we’d like to present you with a list of 10 LGBTQ+ rock and metal songs you can blast in the face of Florida’s homophobic politicians.
We hope that this list (which probably includes some of your favorite artists, such as Judas Priest, Halestorm and PVRIS) can assure you that you are not alone on this music scene, or on this planet – even if some representatives of beats -shit are determined to make you feel like you are.
Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford came out during an interview on MTV in 1998. Since then, he has been a strong advocate for LGBTQ+ rights. Many Judas Priest songs have weird undertones, but the 1977 sin after sin The track “Raw Deal” is the only song (as far as we know) that Halford has openly said about his sexuality. In a 2019 interview with 96.7 KCAL Rocks!, Halford described the track, which is about a queer New York hangout called Fire Island, as “almost like a coming-out experience” for him. On “Raw Deal” Halford sings, “The real freedom of expression I demand / These are human rights.”
Type O negative, “my girlfriend’s girlfriend”
“My Girlfriend’s Girlfriend” is from Type O’s 1996 album Negative, October Rust. It was the first single from the album, and it depicts a polyamorous relationship.
Vocalist Peter Steele sings, “Her and me and her and her and me / An uncrowded couple, we’re three / Hey, we don’t care what people say.”
The track’s music video also depicts a same-sex relationship between two women. Although polyamory is not a sexual orientation, just like being cisgender or transgender is not, polyamorous people are sometimes identified as part of the LGBTQ+ community.
Reel Big Fish, “She’s Got a Girlfriend Now”
“She Has A Girlfriend Now” is from Reel Big Fish’s 1996 album Turn off the radio. The track details a man whose girlfriend leaves him for another woman, stating that guys don’t do it for her anymore.
Aaron Barrett sings, “She says she found someone who will understand / She don’t need nobody to be her man.���
David Bowie, “John, I’m Only Dancing”
David Bowie is arguably one of music’s best-known queer icons, having come out as bisexual in an interview with melody maker in 1972.
It’s been speculated that “John, I’m Only Dancing” is about a man reassuring his boyfriend that yes, he’s attracted to the girl he’s dancing with,”But don’t get me wrong / I’m just dancing.”
The song was deemed far too risque for American audiences by RCA, and was not released in the United States until 1976. But, why, RCA? After all, he was only dancing…
Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody”
You’re probably wondering, “Why is this song on this list?”
Like Bowie, Freddie Mercury is another queer music icon who defied expectations of a rock ‘n’ roll leader. He was confident, flamboyant and boasted a vocal range of four octaves.
There is speculation, sparked by comedian and television writer Guy Branum, that Queen’s 1975 hit “Bohemian Rhapsody” is actually about a man coming out to his parents. He calls it a “breakup song for your mother”, saying that Mercury singing that he just killed a man alluded to him killing the closed part of himself.
Some might say that “Bohemian Rhapsody” is about someone committing a crime, which Branum points out: having gay sex in Britain was a crime until the late 1960s.
Elton John, “Elton’s Song”
We couldn’t talk about David Bowie and Freddie Mercury without also saluting Sir Elton John.
John once said rolling stone that “Elton’s Song” was “the first gay song I actually recorded as a gay song”.
The track first appeared on the 1981 album Fox. The music video and lyrics candidly portray a teenager’s crush on another boy. The visual appeared on the video album of Fox, but was never aired on television as the themes were considered too controversial at the time. John sings “They say it’s not real / But I know how I feel / And I love you.”
Halestorm, “Do Not Disturb”
Did you know Halestorm’s “Do Not Disturb” is based on a true story?
Singer Lzzy Hale, who came out as bisexual in 2021, told Revolver: “I had a lot of fun with a man and a woman a few years ago on this amazing overseas tour…it was just this moment of liberation.” She also said she was inspired by people like David Lee Roth, the Rolling Stones – even Cinderella – talking about sex.
The power to flip the script to show a woman taking control of her own sexuality to portray a threesome is, in our view, an impressive “fuck you” for male-centric depictions of sex and sexuality.
“Holy”, taken from PRVIS’ first album White noiseis another worthy “fuck you”.
This one deals with religious hypocrisy and those who claim to “love your neighbour” while spouting hate speech against homosexuals.
Lynn Gunn sings, “But there’s no way there’s weight in the words you preach / When you claim your faith and contradict your talk.”
In an interview with Kerrang!, Gunn explained the significance of the track. “It’s about someone who was a friend of mine. She was like, ‘You’re going to hell, you sinners’ [because a friend and I were gay]. I was like, ‘But you’re not perfect either, you’re self-centered, and you call flaws but you’re not working on yourself.’
Against Me!, “True Trans Soul Rebel”
“True Trans Soul Rebel” is off the sixth studio album by Against Me! Transgender Dysphoria Blues. The album was released in 2014 after the transition from Laura Jane Grace and delves into gender dysphoria.
On the track, Grace sings, “You should have been a mother / You should have been a woman / You should have left here years ago / You should have lived a different life.”
Laura Jane Grace also performed the song with Miley Cyrus at Cyrus’ Backyard Sessions in support of the Happy Hippie Foundation, a non-profit organization founded to “bring young people together to fight the injustice faced by homeless youth, LGBTQ youth and other vulnerable populations”.
Panic! At Disco, “Girls/Girls/Boys”
Bring it home, we have Panic! At The Disco’s “Girls/Girls/Boys” from their 2013 album Too strange to live, too rare to die!.
Brendon Urie, who is pansexual, said Paper it was a memory of his first threesome experience. In the track, he sings sings, “Girls love girls and boys / And love is not a choice.”
Simple and precise, these words summarize all the interest of this article. People haven’t chosen to be gay any more than they’ve chosen to be born (or to have homophobic politicians erase their identity).