House of Ladosha

House of Ladosha, musically starting in 2007, is a hip-hop group unlike any other. Composed of Antonio Blair (Dosha Devastation) and Adam Radakovich (Cunty Crawford Ladosha), House of Ladosha was inspired by New York ball culture. Not only do they throw shade with the beats of their music and their lyrics, but they also dress mostly in drag.

Their music is not a force to be reckoned with. Their performances can be described as ‘an explosion of glamor and terror.’ When watching their performances, you are likely to see Adam dancing more than Antonio, but the atmosphere of the places they perform is definitely like one of those rave clubs. They get their inspiration for their music as they are sleeping at night or while meditating. Antonio normally finds wealthy suitors at her feet, sex with mythological characters and a royal house of cannibalistic “cock pussy bitch faggots” that wear elaborate costumes. Respecting her body, Antonio abandons the usual references to the penis, vagina and butt replacing the hyper-sexualized language that goes with these words. The metaphors she uses instead almost describe interpretations of Salvador Dali paintings.

Both Antonio and Adam had very different childhoods, but they had one thing in common: their parents accepted them for who they were. Antonio grew up in Nashville, Tennessee. His parents were both “art-raging,” so he was always surrounded by everything art related. His parent’s did not care about gender norms either; he had over 30 Barbie dolls when he was younger, and he also wanted to be a gymnast as a child because of their outfits.

Adam grew up in a small town in Ohio. Although his parents were conservative schoolteachers, they always let him explore and do what he wanted to do. His older brother, Brian turned him onto rap music. As a child, he also loved any sort of television show that made him feel excited and fashionable.

As well as music, House of Ladosha is also considered to be like a second family. The starting members of the house all met in New York. They had all traveled from all over the country to attend New York’s fashion school. They started out going to parties together, but then it became much more as they got more comfortable with each other. Their family is described differently than the standard American family, however: this family consists of people that they have ki ki’s with. Those who are apart of this family also have dinner together and talk on the phone with each other. As a whole, the House of Ladosha family is a group of artists who rage.

Little Richard

While watching John Waters’ controversial movie Pink Flamingoes for this course, one thing that lingered in my mind was how important the film, and its creator, ultimately were to queer culture. Despite what you may (and let’s be honest, will) think about it by its conclusion if you can stomach it, it is a cult classic still talked about today with fans similar to those of Rocky Horror, and there was nothing like it or him at the time of its theatrical release. I consider Little Richard in the same way I consider John, because even today it is hard to state there was anything, or anybody, quite like Little Richard at the time.

Little Richard in my opinion is not just an important part of music culture, but queer culture as well. For one thing, the subject of his sexuality was a mystery throughout his career, and that mystery continues to this day. Whether it’s intentionally vague or not can also be debated, but what is known is he’s admitted to having sexual relationships with men and women, had drag queen stints, married a woman, told his biographer in 1984 he is omnisexual, told both his biographer and Penthouse magazine in 1995 he is homosexual, and authorized Mojo magazine calling him a “bisexual alien” in 2007. Who knows? The only thing that seems crystal clear amidst all the confusion is he does not identify as straight.

Little Richard was like nobody else on the planet at the time, in more ways than his sexual orientation. He broke barriers for both sound and skin color that were unheard of in his heyday. He was one of the first popular black crossover artists in music, selling out stadiums filled with black fans and white fans, appealing to minorities while being embraced by the majorities. He combined elements of different music genres like gospel music and the blues into rock and roll music everybody could not help but love, even if they did not want to; they usually did not want to, because of both his questionable sexual orientation and his androgynous appearance. And his voice. Holy shit, his voice! Drag queens in the ’50s who wore long wigs or had long hair like him, and who ever sounded high pitched like him (singing or just talking) were usually banished to the darkest recesses of street corners or bars with very low attendance, but in that same time Richard was selling out major stadiums and earning the respect of all who viewed his performances (spoiler: there were a lot of viewers). His flamboyance was never seen before from a major musician of the time, let alone a singer in as high a profile as him. His high pitch vocal style still resonates in gay bars in California, where “Tutti Frutti” can commonly be heard on the same night on the dance floor as Sam Smith’s “I’m Not The Only One” and Adele’s “Hello”.

Every single thing that made Little Richard Little Richard was odd, weird, and was not seen before he entered the stage, entered the public eye, entered people’s thoughts, hearts, and minds, and blew it all away with good catchy music you could not help but dance to, even if you had nobody to dance with. His influence and excellence inspired generations of straight, queer, and questioning individuals alike to get into music, while simultaneously inspiring musicians of his same generation to improve (as both musicians, and people). There was never anybody quite like Little Richard before he started, and I cannot say there has been anybody quite like Little Richard ever since.

The Rockland Palace

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Nowadays, we tend to think that gays were hidden until the 1960’s when the sexual revolution happened. People were protesting for women’s rights and gay rights. In 1973 psychology even removed homosexuality from the DSM’s list of mental disorders. This may lead people to conclude that before the 1960’s, non-heterosexually oriented people were secretive and hiding, right? Wrong! In the 1920’s until the early 1930’s, there were huge balls and parties that were very open about different types of sexuality. A very well-known place is the Rockland Palace in Harlem created by a black fraternal organization.

Historically, blacks migrated up north into urban area such as Harlem because they were transitioning from the slavery era to working up North at factories. Most of the African Americans moved to Harlem. Nowhere else in the country could you find an area so large and concentrated by African Americans. Harlem became known as the “new negro capital.” There was a variety of African American people ranging from black schoolteachers to black millionaires, giving life to Harlem with their youth, music, and openness. Harlem became very huge in their art and music styles, in particular, jazz and blues. Blues music was used by African Americans to express their sexual feelings and their hardships they had previously faced starting from the civil war when slavery was still present. African Americans accepted homosexuality and thus created a culture in the 1920’s-1930’s in which people could have fun and sexually express themselves.

The Rockland Palace was famous for throwing balls in which men would dress up as women. It was known as the “faggot’s ball” or costume balls. The palace attracted many people such as high class white men and women, it was a very diverse crowd. Not everyone there was homosexual, though it was very evident that there were gays, lesbians, and transsexuals, it was accepted. Some people just came there to observe the balls.

The Rockland Palace is related to queer culture because it represents how queer culture isn’t this new phenomenon that didn’t exist or was hidden until the 1960’s. Most people believe that homosexually orientated people didn’t exist or came into the public eye during the sexual revolution. The Rockland Palace proves that it is not true and that there were places where people overtly gay or transsexual would go and be themselves. Another way the Rockland Palace is related to queer culture is because it was created by a black fraternal organization. This is important because nowadays, people tend to think that African American culture is more homophobic than white culture but in reality, when Africans were first brought to America they were very sexually open. They believed that homosexuality is just a natural part of life.

In class we discussed Chauncey’s work. He pointed out how there was a “whole gay world” before World War II but multiple people don’t know that and believe in these myths. The three myths were: myth of isolation, myth of invisibility, and myth of internalization. Harlem and the Rockland Palace is an example that debunked all of the myths that Chauncey believed people had. The myth of isolation is not true because at the Rockland Palace, people were openly gay there and everyone knew that it was a place to go if you wanted to immerse yourself in queer culture. This also disproves that queer culture was invisible because people went there knowing that it was a spot where other gays, lesbians, and transsexuals hung out at. Lastly, Harlem clearly did not internalize the dominant culture. They used the Rockland Palace to express their differences in art and sexuality through jazz and blue music and the costume balls.

Peaches’ Fatherfuckers

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Fatherfuckers is Canadian recording artist Peaches’ third studio album released in 2003. Peaches penned and programmed all of the songs for the album herself, most of which are rock-oriented. Fatherfuckers spent eight weeks on the U.S. Top Electronics Albums chart and sold 40,000 copies. To promote the album, Peaches opened for Marilyn Manson in Europe.

This album was huge for Peaches in expressing her bisexuality. Most of the songs on the album have to do with sex in some way, and the ones that don’t still often refer to her being interested in both genders. This is why I chose to include this artifact in our digital archive— it’s extremely expressive of queerness and bisexuality. The album cover also includes Peaches with a beard, which shows her openness to gender fluidity.

In the first track on the album, “I Don’t Give A…”, the music and lyrics are both very repetitive. The beat seems to mimic what Peaches is saying, which is basically just her repeating, “I don’t give a fuck” and “I don’t give a shit.” I think this makes the point that she’s resolved to be herself and not care what anyone else thinks of her. Peaches’ song “I’m The Kinda” is also very repetitive in both lyrics and beats. This seems to be a huge trend on her album that I believe she uses to express how determined she is to let everyone know who she is. Her foul language has a feminist tinge to it, which is relevant to our class topic of lesbian feminism.

In the song “Shake Yer Dix”, Peaches asks both males and females if they’re with her, and if they are they should “shake their dicks” and “shake their tits”, another clear display of her sexuality in a very sexually explicit way. This is another song where Peaches displays her determination to be herself and be accepted for it. A line in the song says, “I’ll be me and you be you.” The beat of this song is clean and soft, giving it a sensual feel.

The song “Stuff Me Up” is a very sexual song. It alternates between the phrases, “eat a big dick”, “eat a big clit”, and “why don’t you stuff me up?” Not only does this display Peaches’ bisexuality, it also expresses her sexual desire. Another extremely sexual song on this album is “Back It Up”. In this song, Peaches uses phrases like “I like to lick it and suck it” and “I like to tease it and tap it.” The beat and rhythm of this track is very sexual with heavy bass and echoing notes.

In “I U She”, Peaches alternates between saying “I you he together” and “I you she together”, clearly displaying her bisexuality. She then continues to repeatedly say, “I don’t have to make the choice. I like girls and I like boys.” This is the one place on her album where she explicitly states that she likes both boys and girls, in a sort of gay liberation. This reminded me of a discussion we had in class about how men used to sleep with both woman and men and still consider themselves straight. Although it does appear that Peaches identifies as bisexual, she emphasizes that she doesn’t have to make a choice. She then continues to talk about crops and whips, showing us that she likes to be with both males and females in a sexual way. This song really embodies the entire idea of the album in the way it shows both her sexuality and her desire to express and be heard.

Only Straight Girls Wear Dresses Stereotype

Only Straight Girls Wear Dresses is a lovely song by CWA from a compilation album called Stars Kill Rock. About twenty different artists contributed to this alternative rock album. The album itself was released by a label called Kill Rock Stars in 1993 which was a “left-wing, feminist, and anti-war” label.

The lyrics of this song and even the title portray a certain stereotype for women in general. I feel as though in the LGBTQ+ community as well as in the cishet (cisgender, heterosexual folks) community girls who like girls are seen as badass and really butch. On the other hand, straight girls are seen as very feminine and into “girly” things. None of that is necessarily true. Straight girls as well as lesbians come in many different types. There are femme lesbians, butch lesbians, dykes, bull dykes, and many different more. Then on the other hand, there are different types of straight girls. They can be masculine or feminine or anything in between. With that said, what one identifies with can change at any time. The point I’m trying to make here is that physical appearance and sexuality don’t necessarily correspond. In some cases it does and in others it doesn’t.

I heard this song a really long time ago like in middle school (I was weird, okay), and when we began George Chauncy I thought about this song. The reason being was the discussion on the different types of homosexual men. When talking about the types of gay men, I thought about the different types of lesbian and straight women. I feel as though there there are a lot of expectations for lesbians but not nearly as much for gay men. That is how this song relates back to the class. Gay men and lesbians are similar enough in the types that there are. More feminine gay men are like femme lesbians. This song could really be switched around to say “you know, only straight men act very masculine and like sports and stuff” which again, isn’t necessarily true.

Lesbians cool only for the summer?

Demi Lovato, popular singer and actress, has continued to stay in the public eye and influence teens for many years now. She got her start as a child on “Barney & Friends.” In 2008 and 2010, she became a Disney Channel star in the hit movies “Camp Rock” and “Camp Rock 2” with the Jonas Brothers. In 2009, she was given her own Disney show, “Sonny with a Chance.”

Her music career took off during that time, as well.  In 2008, she released her first album, “Don’t Forget,” which was very pop in genre. Her second album “Here We Go Again,” was released in 2009, and it appeared on the U.S. Billboard 200. It’s top track made the Billboard Hot 100 at number 15.

During 2010, her music and acting career took a hiatus due to mental health issues. She openly discussed  her issues with anorexia, bulimia, self-harm, and bipolar disorder. In early 2011, she entered a rehab facility for three months to undergo treatment for these issues.

Three months after her release from the treatment center, she told People magazine, “What’s important for me now is to help others.”

After overcoming her struggle with mental health, her music took a meaningful turn. With every song that she released, she encouraged self-confidence, acceptance, and strength. Her third album, “Unbroken,” addressed a lot of her personal mental health issues. The album’s emotional and powerful lead single, “Skyscraper,” was Lovato’s first top ten single.

In the midst of trying to destroy the negative mental health stigma in society, she also became an advocate for the LGBTQ community. On numerous occasions, she publicly spoke about supporting same-sex marriage.

Check out this video:

In 2014, she served as the Grand Marshal for LA Pride Week, where she filmed her music video for her single, “Really Don’t Care.”

Lovato at LA Pride 2014

Her newest album, “Confident,” was just recently released on October 16th. Similar to her other music after her recovery, it embodies self-confidence and acceptance.

“Confident” album cover

Billboard.com comments on the album: “Since her emancipation from the Disney Channel’s clutches, Demi Lovato has become one of pop’s leading motivational figures, wailing songs about self-empowerment and talking to Congress about destigmatizing mental illness.”

However, the release of the album’s first single, “Cool for the Summer,” received some backlash from critics and fans. The song doesn’t embody the same attitude of all her other music, which is being yourself and being proud of who you are

I am a fan of the song, and I really liked it when I first heard it on the radio this summer. At a first listen, I didn’t realize this song is actually about a lesbian relationship since it does not use any pronouns whatsoever.

Listening closely to the lyrics, however, it became very clear: “I’m a little curious, too,” “Got a taste for the cherry, I just need to take a bite,” and “Don’t be scared, ’cause I’m your body type.”

A song like this from Demi Lovato, a powerful advocate for the LGBTQ community, is not unexpected. However, overall message of the song threw me off, and I was not the only one.

The song is about a lesbian relationship, but it suggests that the relationship is not approved by society, and that it needs to be kept a secret.

She sings, “Shhh…Don’t tell your mother,” “We’re cool for the summer,” and “Just something that we wanna try.”

Overall, the song depicts a secretive, experimental lesbian relationship that isn’t very serious, and that it’s just “cool for the summer.”

Afterellen.com comments, “Certainly there are women whose interests align with “Cool For the Summer,” but when pop stars create hits about bisexuality being less serious or, you know, cool but just “for the summer,” it implies female/female relationships should be (or are) not on the same level of sincerity that a female/male romance might be.”

Being an ally of the LGBTQ community, Lovato would most likely disagree with this statement; however, the lyrics to her song suggest differently.

The issue with this song can be easily connected to a reading we recently did in class by George Chauncey, “Gay New York: Gender, Urban Culture, and the Making of the Gay Male World 1980-1940.” Chauncey introduces the myths of isolation, invisibility, and internalization. The myths of invisibility and internalization can be recognized in the lyrics of “Cool for the Summer.”

Chauncey states, “The myth of invisibility holds that, even if a gay world existed, it was kept invisible and thus remained difficult for isolated gay men to find” (3).

He also states, “The myth of internalization holds that gay men uncritically internalized the dominant culture’s view of them as sick, perverted, and immoral, and that their self-hatred led them to accept the policing of their lives rather than resist it” (Chauncey 4).

In the song, Lovato tells her female partner to keep the relationship quiet, especially from her mother. She fears that society will disapprove, so the relationship is kept invisible. She internalizes the fact that they will be judged negatively for participating in homosexual behavior.

Overall, this song does not align with what Demi Lovato claims to support. It sheds a negative light on lesbian relationships, and it supports hiding who you really are in fear of being criticized by society.

Beyonce’s relationship with the LGBTQ community

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Beyonce is a global superstar who is highly respected in not only the music industry, but every where around the globe. She manages to relate to many different races, genders, ethnicities, and religious backgrounds. The 20 time Grammy winner has been deemed the best entertainer of our generation. Even while she is riding high off of her success she still manages to surprise people with more creative and artistic music and performances.

In 2015 Beyonce’ performed for a festival over the summer called “Made in America” where she performed a magical show. Before her performance of “Diva” one of her hit tracks off of her 3rd solo album “I Am Saha Fierce” she played a snippet from Ronda Rousey’s “Do Nothing bitch” speech. In the speech she speaks on how “just because her body was developed for a purpose other than fucking millionaires it doesn’t mean it’s masculine”. Beyonce’ wants to push the boundaries of what is feminine or masculine. The LGBTQ community looks up to Beyonce’ as a icon and some will say even a legend. Lavern Coxx has spoke on how Beyonce’ lifts and empowers women all around the world. She has the ability to bring us together more because of her talents and creativity. The Halo singer has also shown her gratitude towards marriage equality by dressing in all rainbow color clothing dancing around the her hit song “7/11”. In the speech by Ronda her claims will make you reconsider what really is masculine or feminine or if there are any boundaries at all. In the article “masculinity without Men” it states that people trust in the idea of what masculine is now and people don’t really know. With Beyonce’ she try’s to get people to see that being female doesn’t mean you can’t be muscular in the body or extremely successful. Women that are transmen in particular can relate to the idea of being more muscular. Even though Beyonce’ dances in her leotards she defies the norms of what is deemed a typical women or typical feminist. Through her performances she shows the LGBTQ community how to defy the laws of what is masculine or feminine or right or wrong and to be you for you.

While Beyonce’ is a actual women her performances speaks volumes to so many across the world. The LGBTQ community lives for her strong anthems and powerful messages that promotes good thoughts and breaks social norms. Beyonce’ has been looked at as the “it” women where she is the new standard. By her using her power for good it sets her apart from artist who might not be as involved. Helping the LGBTQ community be more confident will help shine more light on topics of transgenders, gays and lesbians which will show we are all one of a kind. I believe that she is a wonderful voice through her messages in the LGBTQ community.

 

 

Joan Jett, it’s all in the Lyrics

Born Joan Larkin, Joan Jett soon became a name that was the foundation of a major change and movement in the world of rock and roll. Little did everyone know at the time, Jett would later become a name in rock and roll that will never be forgotten. Jett formed her first actual band, The Runaways, at the age of 15 in 1975. The Runaways, which was the first all girl rock band mainly produced music that was considered hard rock. Though The Runaways only lasted a couple short years before breaking up, Jett continued to fight the status quote by being a strong woman in the predominately male dominated world of rock and roll. Jett eventually went on to try to find a record label which would accept her work only to be turned down 23 times. Jett was so frustrated that with a help from Kenny Laguna she created her own record label, Blackheart Records. This made Jett the first woman artist to not only own, but also have direct control over an independent record label.

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Throughout her career, Jett often pushed the envelope by being not just the average woman who sang in a band. Jett was the only woman on the scene throughout the late 1970’s and on who was not dressed in a cute outfit singing the words to some song about her boyfriend or what have you (like all the other female singers did). Jett, on the other hand was the lead singer and guitarist for her band, which produced hard rock music such as I Love Rock ’n’ Roll. The almost grunge rock sound in her voice and the way she was not afraid to really get into her music like the men in rock and roll did set Jett apart from all other female singers at that time. The songs she wrote and produced through her record label also set her apart from all the other female singers at the time.

Jett’s music was often geared towards those of us in society who feel like social outcasts. Even though Jett does not really step into the spotlight much to speak on such social issues, some of her songs such as Androgynous tell a story of people who do not necessarily feel comfortable with their gender. Throughout Androgynous Jett tells a story of a man and a woman who are similar to what someone today might consider as being gender fluid. Meaning that one day they wake up and want to wear a dress, and the next day they might want to wear a leather biker jacket with chains (clearly not being very girly but rather masculine instead), both of the choices being available regardless of their assigned genders. As we have discussed in class this is not uncommon for people to want to dress in the opposite manner that society decides is appropriate for their biological genders. Though Jett does not outright publicly advocate these ideas in terms of speaking on behalf of such issues, she does advocate them through her music and personal style.

“Till Death Do Us Party” by Adore Delano

Till Death Do Us Party is the debut album of drag queen, singer-songwriter, and television personality from Season 6 of Rupaul’s Drag Race, Adore Delano (Danny Noriega). Released June 3, 2014, this eleven track album quickly gained popularity peaking at Number 59 on the US Billboard Top 200, Number 3 on the US Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums, and Number 11 on the US Billboard Independent Albums in 2014. Till Death Do Us Party was the first of hopefully many more serious projects by Adore Delano, and was received with open and eager arms by the public during its release.

Although most albums made by past Rupaul’s Drag Race contestants have been well received by the public, Adore Delano’s album Till Death Do Us Party was the first to involve personal experience and performance to emphasize the life of a young aspiring drag queen. Some songs on the album such as Party and Hello, I Love You are based on her high school experiences as a gay boy growing up in California. Party is about her nostalgia for her high school days; she was young, gay, and not afraid of gender binaries.

Hello, I Love You is Adore’s homage to herself as a gay boy in high school. In Let the Music Play, an online show produced by WOWPresents, she describes the song meaning as, “Me – when I was in high school. I was basically in love with this guy … he came up to me and gave me his number because he thought I was a girl and I assumed he loved me.” I Look Fucking Cool ft. Alaska Thunderfuck is drawn from the criticisms that came from within the drag community after she left high school. Being constantly judged by the “polished” queens of the industry is not something she was concerned about. This song was her smack back at those queens telling them that she does not care what they have to say about her because she knows she looks beautiful even if she is not a cookie cutter image. All of these songs and others come together in a collection of self-love, expression, performance, and nostalgia that is Till Death Do Us Party.

As a drag queen Adore Delano has branded herself as a female in the entertainment industry even though she is biologically male. The drag persona “Adore Delano” and the man underneath “Danny Noriega” represent two halves of a whole person. This album served as the ultimate form of gender performativity for Adore Delano. In Gender Trouble, Judith Butler states “Performativity of gender is a stylized repetition of acts, an imitation or miming of the dominant conventions of gender.” Adore utilizes this method of gender performativity just as many other drag queens do. Her persona is based off of a ditzy young girl who is boy crazy but increasingly confident. In her school years she saw the acts of female classmates and has combined them into her drag persona today. She is a gender performance.

Country Music and the LGBTQ community

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Rather obviously, country music is entirely hetero-normative. We do not see openly gay, lesbian, or trans country music artist who writes or sings about their relationships. For the most part, country music is men singing about women they love or women they want to have sex with and women singing about men that cheated on them or broke their hearts. These cultural norms in this genre of music make it next to impossible to break out in this business if you so choose to be open about your sexuality if it is not hetero-normative.   Have country music artists come out? Yes. However, these artists are very slim, the first person openly coming out being in 2010. Most recently in November 2014, Ty Herndon and Billy Gilman came out within hours of each other stirring up the country community. http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/11/21/country-artists-ty-herndon-and-billy-gilman-come-out-as-gay/ Coming out is one thing, but are any of these people that choose to reveal their sexuality headliners or overly successful? No. Why is it that even in the R&B community which use to be historically homophobic, they are beginning to be a lot more supportive of gay, lesbian, and trans but country has remained stagnant?

Chely Wright was the first person in country music to publicly come out as gay. For the majority of her music career she appeared to be straight, even dating Brad Paisley, a very famous heterosexual male country singer, while they were on tour together. She wrote songs like “Hard to be a Husband, Hard to be a Wife” which is overtly hetero-normative, but she also wrote songs with titles like “Let me in” which is not telling of her sexuality at all. Chely in fact was intending to mask her sexuality the entire time. She has said that not only did she know she was a lesbian since she was 9, but she also swore to herself in her teen years that she would never reveal her sexuality to anyone as it was “immoral and would kill her career”. She eventually did come out to family in 2005 and later came out publicly in 2010. She is by far the most successful career wise in terms of people that have come out in country music, but she only came out when her music career was over. I can’t help but think it had to be much easier coming out not having the pressure of having to sell albums, tours, tshirts, etc. She in a lot of ways got to a point where there wasn’t much riding on her sexuality anymore, so while it was brave to come out, it wasn’t nearly as risky for her career as some of the younger artists who are coming out more recently.

When reading Chely’s story I couldn’t help but be reminded of Walt Whitman and his story of “coming out”. Could we find a pattern in Chely’s music like historians did in Whitman’s work?

Lyrics from the song “Not as In Love”

I want the earth to move, I want bells to ring
When he walks in the room, I wanna hear angels sing
It’s not a bad situation I’m in right now you see
I’m just not as in love as I’d like to be
No I’m not as in love as I’d like to be

Are these out of the many, many lyrics she has written not some how indicative of her feelings for women over men? For most listeners of this song when it came out in 2001, the thought was probably, “shes not in love with this man so she should move on to another man”. If one would have known her story, they might have saw these lyrics as her expressing how it is in fact a man that doesn’t satisfy her at all. In future lyrics that were released around the time she came out, she was much more candid about her feelings, even expressing that it could be a woman or man to end up with.

 

Lyrics from the song “Like Me”

“And who’s gonna end up holdin’ your hand-
A beautiful woman or a tall, handsome man?
There’s no doubt they’ll love you, but it’s yet to be seen:
Will anyone ever know you like me?”

Obviously, Whitman was a little different because his poetry wasn’t as overt in the coming out process, but like I said, she is not nearly as successful and has not been since coming out.

Why doe’s non-normative sexuality seem to be a death sentence in country music? I think it is the fan base. Country music has historically not been diverse. It is an industry run by white men with very little African American men, much less women then men, and almost no other ethnicity found. In order to bridge the gap for LGBTQ to feel comfortable coming out in country music, there needs to be much more diversity in general.