And I’m not taking it back!
Credit: We Did It Records
Face it, we’ve all done it. Laid starfish-style on our unmade beds, staring at the ceiling, blasting a corny love song while thinking of that special someone. It’s a smitten young adult rite of passage. But nobody provides a better soundtrack for your lovestruck main character moments like a once enamored queer artist. Yearning, forbidden love, and a world of firsts are all common love song themes that queer people know best.
At this point, it’s just another fact of life. Roses are red, violets are blue, and queer musicians write way better love songs than we do.
Take “Back of a Cab,” by the criminally talented King Princess. This smooth and melodic ode to missing memories with your first love carries the weight of being head-boppable and foot-tappable with ugly cry-worthy lyrics.
First loves are particularly special for queer people because it represents not only a coming-of-age experience but a development in one’s sense of self and identity. Overwhelming feelings of uncertainty and hesitation are common symptoms of a queer first love, especially for those raised in homophobic households. It’s indicative of having to face your sexuality through relationships, an unnerving task that most queer folks must do.
Don’t get me started on queer breakup songs. Lauren Sanderson’s “Over (Again),” will bring a haunting, melancholic vibe to your depression playlist. This song accurately represents what it’s like to experience another end to a relationship chock-full of endings. It’s not uncommon to keep returning to a familiar love, even if the relationship wasn’t healthy. Sanderson explores this in such a heavenly way, it’s sure to make your ears weep (the good kind of weeping, though!)
When it’s time to celebrate the undeniable blessing of queer love, look no further than “Pink in the Night,” by Mitski. While the singer prefers to keep details of her personal life private, including her sexuality, Mitski herself has alluded to being queer in the past and has undeniable sapphic undertones swirling throughout her discography. Regardless, this song exemplifies what it’s like to love someone boundlessly and without fear. The Japanese-American singer keeps it real with touching lyrics like “I could stare at your back all day” over a constant emotional build in the background. For queer people struggling with keeping the demonic dogs of loneliness at bay,the large majority of Mitski’s 2018 album, Be The Cowboy,” is there to remind them that healthy love exists out there, and is waiting for them with patience and open arms.
That being said, the unique experience of being queer only adds to the depth and nuance that goes into what makes a fantastic love song. While queer musicians continue to bless us with tear-jerkers and dance-in-my-room-naked bops alike, it will remain an undeniable truth that their music is among the best we’ll ever get.
Check out some of our favorite queer-fronted romance tracks, below.
Christelle Pierre is an Online Writer at Rowdy Magazine. When not writing, one can find Christelle holding a YA novel in one hand and an iced coffee in the other. She can be reached on Instagram @spicywormgirl