6. Kendrick Lamar, “Auntie Diaries”
💿 Mr. Morale and Big Steps • 🏷 Aftermath / Interscope / pgLang / Top Dawg Entertainment • 🗓 2022
“My aunt’s a man now / I think I’m old enough to understand now…” Well – you don’t often hear about a big label rapper! 🎵 “Aunt’s Diaries” is one of the most surprising records of 💿 Mr. Morale and Big Steps. Few rappers who don’t identify as LGBTQ+ dare to address LGBTQ+ issues. Far too often, if rappers get into it, it’s because they’re homophobic. 🏆 Grammys and Pulitzer Prize-winning rapper 🎙 Kendrick Lamar admits his past ignorance regarding homophobia, saying in the second verse, “Faggot, faggot, faggot, we don’t know any better / Elementary kids with no filter, though.” Whenever that F-word comes into play, it’s often much more controversial than the F-bomb. Interestingly, as the record progresses, Kendrick later says, “I told them F-bombs, I don’t don’t know better.”
Lamar talks about growing into a better, more tolerant person, using the example of his trans aunt whom he loves and respects. In addition, he also mentions a trans cousin:
“My aunt used to be a man now, we’re cool with that
The story had passed and had made us ignorant
My favorite cousin said he reciprocated
And follow my aunt with the same behavior.
Of note, Kendrick Lamar refers to the church’s callous reaction to his cousin’s trans identity, something common, especially in the black church. Although some black denominations are seen as more liberal and progressive institutions (the African Methodist Episcopal Church is a prime example), they are not as progressive when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community. Refocusing on “Auntie Diaries,” reactions to this bold figure are mixed from the straight and LGBTQ+ communities. Still, this is a legitimate LGBTQ+ issue worth analyzing and discussing.
Appears in 🔻:
7. Charlotte Day Wilson, “Mountains”
💿 ALPHA • 🏷 Stone Woman Music • 📅 2021
Sometimes it takes a village to write a song. For the 🎙 Charlotte Day Wilson registration, 🎵 “Mountains” (💿 ALPHA), he DEFINITELY took a village. Writing credits, in addition to Wilson, include 🎼✍ Varren Wade🎼✍ baby face (!), 🎼✍ D’Mile🎼✍ Brandon Banks🎼✍ Kyla Moscovich🎼✍ Theo Halm🎼✍ Marcus Reddickand 🎼✍ mk.gee. Wow! With so many cooks in the kitchen, this song should indeed be great – mountainous at ne diploma. No worries – the results are stunning!
“Up to the mountain
Valley search (Valley)
You hear me calling
Won’t you come find me?
please don’t leave me
My heart is breaking
I feel it coming.”
The refrain is right, justifying this village of writers. Plus, the backdrop is the perfect canvas for the Canadian R&B singer-songwriter to sing along to. On this mountainous gem, love – relationship – heads south. “When it rains, it only rains on me,” she sings in the first verse, adding, “Where were you when I was freezing? / Soaked in the white stone, it was cold. Well, where were you CDW lover? Later, in the second verse, she asks, “So how could you turn into demons you / Once said you’d keep the way.” “Mountains” is incredibly relatable – we’ve all been there.
Appears in 🔻:
- 11 high-flying songs about the mountains
- 15 M songs: without rhyme or reason, vol. 2
8. Elton John, “Elton’s Song”
💿 Fox • 🏷 Mercury • 🗓 nineteen eighty one
🎙 Elton John no shortage of hits – it’s a legend. Moreover, he is high on the list of gay icons. That said, although John is a proud LGBTQ musician, much of his music is not dominated by sexuality. In today’s era, LGBTQ musicians are freer to express their sexuality – it’s more common to hear about boy-to-boy or girl-to-girl love. In John’s heyday, that wasn’t the case. Still, the legend has had its fair share of moments, including the wonderful 🎵 “Elton’s Song” from his 1981 album, 💿 Fox.
Fox is not the first Elton John album that comes to mind – UNDERSTATEMENT. Plus, with an abundance of hits, “Elton’s Song” is one that easily gets lost in the shuffle. It shouldn’t, of course. “Elton’s Song” was co-written with 🎼✍ Tom Robinson (famous for 🎵 “Happy to be gay”). Robinson, like John, is gay and has written incredible lyrics. Those lyrics, of course, reflect same-sex attraction — queer love — something misunderstood back then that still angers people even in the 2020s. “They say it’s not real but I know how I feel and I love you,” John sings at the end of the second verse. No, the pronouns aren’t self-explanatory, but Elton confirmed it’s gay, and honestly, it sounds gay.
The chorus is my favorite section of the song. It also highlights this “queer” teenage crush that is misunderstood but the protagonist feels passionately:
“If you knew what I’m going through
Time and time again I’m ashamed to say your name
It’s hard to smile and bear it when you’re standing there
My lips are dry, I meet your gaze and look away.
The thing is, you don’t have to be gay to identify with these lyrics – they apply to many situations. The really hard-hitting lyrics appear at the end of this superb underrated piano ballad (with wonderful instrumental pizazz via the orchestra): “But I’d give my life for just one night beside you. 🎵 “Elton’s Song” = masterpiece. Sadly, it doesn’t get the same love as the beloved classics in its catalog, but it should. He sings beautifully, with incredible authenticity and sincerity.
Appears in 🔻:
9. The Killers, “Terrible Thing”
💿 pressure machine • 🏷 Island • 📅 2021
“I’m in my room on the verge of something terrible.” Man, it’s heavy – it hits hard. 🎵 “Horrible Thing” as you expected, is sad. It appears as the third song on 💿 pressure machinethe seventh studio album of 🎙 The killers. What exactly is this “terrible thing” the male character in the song is about to do? Contemplate suicide.
Why does the character consider stopping everything? He’s gay but he’s from a place where that’s not accepted, especially given the times. You could say he’s knee-deep in the pressure machine, like “Round here we all take up our cross and cling to His Holy name / But the cards I’ve been dealt will have you thrown out of the game.” Wow. 🎙 Brandon Flowers does a masterful job of realizing this and putting himself in this young man’s situation. It marks one of many bright, tickling points of fantasy in pressure machine.
Appears in 🔻:
10. Jxckson, “Loverboy”
🎵 “Lover” • 🏷 Jxckson Music • 🗓 2022
“No need to buy me flowers / I don’t need new things / I just want your hours / Spent thinking about me.” Court! Don’t we all want to feel that kind of love, 🎙 Jxckson? On 🎵 “Loverboy”, the electrifying pop musician wants to be your — well, his — lover. It gets more “intense” in the second verse, where he claims, “On your knees like you’re my savior / Always on my worst behavior / My loyalty never quits / (You can get it now or get it more late). “Da-yum, well, I doubt Jxckson does a lot of kneeling prayers – just a hunch.
Beyond the extracted verses, Jxckson adds in the pre-chorus, “Anything you want from me / I can supply it.” It seems like a lucrative offer. The chorus, of course, is the centerpiece:
“I could be your lover boy
Tell me what you want from me
I could be your lover boy
So tell me what your fantasy is.
Well, I don’t think it would be an overstatement to call “Loverboy” very gay. Of course, it kills! You know what else kills about this gay gem? The production, honey! The beat is on and those synths are powerful – popping in your face. Jxckson has a colorful and epic background to work with on this steamy and suggestive cut (🎛 Cheta Master). He “does the thing of the day”, NO CAP!
Appears in 🔻: