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You need to hear these 11 LGBTI songs from 2017 that you may have missed

You need to hear these 11 LGBTI songs from 2017 that you may have missed

These LGBTI songs were all released this year, but maybe you missed some of them for whatever reason.

See our list for some of the most under appreciated songs of 2017, in no particular order.

‘Sleepover’ – Hayley Kiyoko

Journalist, Charlie Mathers

Hayley Kiyoko
Hayley Kiyoko

Hayley Kiyoko deserves far more praise than she actually gets. Her already dedicated fans admire her endlessly for her representation of the LGBTI community. Hayley uses female pronouns in her songs, and female love interests in her music videos. Previous music video Sleepover features two women and when Hayley pitched the video idea to her team, one person said: ‘Is it just gonna be another music video about two girls?’ Hayley responded by explaining: ‘All these other artists are singing about guys every single video. Why can’t I sing about girls more than once?’

Latest single Feelings looks at the emotions people have when they’re crushing hard on someone. Hayley said today’s society encourages people in today’s dating scene to suppress those feelings. She wanted to instead write an anthem celebrating those emotions.

‘Romans’ – Mashrou’ Leila

Family editor, James Besanvalle

Lebanon-based band Mashrou’ Leila have shown they’re an absolute force to be reckoned with this year. Coming out of a wildly popular US tour, the lead singer Hamed Sinno is gay (swoon!) and sings in Arabic. Romans is all about giving Arab women a voice and it’s unapologetically a feminist anthem. In a Facebook post on the day they released the song, the band wrote the caption: ‘Equality. Solidarity. Intersectionality.’ The band also wrote in the description: ‘[Romans] toys with the intersection of gender with race by celebrating and championing a coalition of Arab and Muslim women, styled to over-articulate their ethnic background, in a manner more typically employed by Western media to victimize them.’

Unfortunately, the band made headlines for the wrong reasons recently after a concert in Egypt. Members of the crowd waved rainbow flags while the band played and Egyptian authorities arrested them. We stand with LGBTI people arrested in Egypt.

‘Straight Boy’ – Shamir

Deputy editor, David Hudson 

Shamir
Shamir

Following the sublime and sparse electro beats of his 2015 debut album, Ratchet, Las Vegas-raised Shamir Bailey returned this week with his new album, Revelations. It showcases a more multi-instrumentalist, multi-faceted talent. Lead track Straight Boy, which dropped in October, found the non-binary singer commenting on queer erasure in a heteronormative world. ‘Can someone tell me why, I always seem to let these straight boys ruin my life?’ is its opening line.

‘It’s about how frustrating it was for me to have my whole identity picked apart at a young age, just to see straight white men use it as an aesthetic choice,’  he told NPR. ‘The video quite unequivocally depicts the process of whitewashing and the repudiation of the queer and people of color who pioneered.’

‘Masseducation’ – St Vincent

Travel editor, Jamie Tabberer

Image by Shore Fire Media

I’d never heard of St. Vincent (real name Annie Clark) until her headline-generating romance with supermodel Cara Delevingne last year. Naturally, I completely misinterpreted her as a vapid, FROW-residing poseur. That is, until the release of this month’s peppy fringe-pop masterpiece, Masseducation.

On its titular song she repeatedly groans ‘I can’t turn off what turns me on’ with growing, orgasmic urgency over thumping beats and contorted sounds; her music has all the gritty glitter and aching cool of Alison Goldfrapp and Grimes. Now I find she’s four similarly critically-acclaimed albums under her fashionable belt, spanning 10 years. More fool me for being so judgemental.

‘Fiends’ – Seafoal

Journalist, Charlie Mathers

Seafoal is an epic non-binary musician you’ll be glad you were introduced to. Fiends is the perfect track to listen to when you’re storming down the street, walking from A to B. Seafoal explained in an interview, they wrote the track about mental illness, and ‘likened the illness to bad little creatures living in my head.’ The singer wanted the song to ‘sound creepy to accompany that.’

After coming out as non-binary, the singer now regularly educates their fans on LGBTI issues. They don’t do this because they ‘want attention or validation for myself’ but because ‘people genuinely need educating on trans people as a whole.’ They continued: ‘If just one person has learned something and taken it away to mull it over, or one kid questioning their identity has been made to feel more comfortable, I must be doing something right.’

‘Straight White Man’ – Rocking Horse Club

Young voices editor, Jamie Wareham

Rocking Horse Club
Rocking Horse Club Instagram

The music video turns the tables on how we usually see sexism, homophobia, and racism. The bouncy pop-punk tune is giving us all the feels. With lyrics like ‘It’s hard if you’re gay, worse if you’re trans’ and ‘the system fails unless you’re pale’ – we’re on board.

It’s fair to say we think the music video is a giggle, that also asks some good questions about privilege.

‘Paradise’ – MNEK

Family editor, James Besanvalle

MNEK in Charli XCX music video for Boys
MNEK in Charli XCX music video for Boys Instagram

MNEK (real name Uzoechi Emenike) is an absolute force to be reckoned with. Coming into his own this year, the British singer started off as a song writer. He’s written for Kylie Minogue, Beyonce, Madonna, Rudimental and Zara Larsson, just to name a few. But his own tunes are incredibly catchy, with Paradise sampling 90s club classic Free by Ultra Nate.

On National Coming Out Day this year, the out gay artist said he came out to his friend at the age of 18. He wrote in an Instagram post: ‘I remember at the time I was just feeling very scared, and unsure. I also think being black and realizing you’re gay can be very daunting,’ he said.

‘Would you like to go to paradise?’ Yes MNEK, yes we would.

”71 Charger’ – Loreen

Video editor, Lewis Peters

Loreen's song Euphoria won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2012
Loreen’s song Euphoria won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2012

Loreen identifies as bisexual; she is fierce, sassy and super talented. I’ve been a fan since her song Euphoria won Eurovision in 2012. Her debut album Heal was on repeat for at least a month or so, so it’s fair to say I’m pretty invested in her music.

Her latest single ’71 Charger takes her musical style down a different path from the electronic, club music heard before. The song is very laid back, her vocals are soft when they need to be and hard when the drama builds. It kind of reminds me of the style of a Lana Del Rey song.

Loreen’s sophomore album is being released soon as from the previews I can tell that ’71 Charger isn’t the only thought-provoking song to come from the album.

‘Mystery of Love’ – Sufjan Stevens

Creative partnerships, Chrys Salter

This is one of the two original songs written for the critically acclaimed gay love story Call Me By Your Name, directed by Luca Guadagnino and based upon the original novel by Andre Aciman. Very much like novel and the movie, Mystery of Love is both hopeful and heartbreaking, with the subtlety of raw human emotion and self conflict surrounding the possibility of love itself.

Written from the perspective of Elio, the young teenager who falls hopelessly and scarily in love with his older house guest Oliver, Mystery of Love describes the madness of falling for someone you’d never expect, and not wanting to change a single thing about it.

‘Lacefront Like This’ – AAA Girls

Creative Partnerships and Communications, Alex Protopapa

The triple AAA girls are drag race royalty and show us in this slow number that a girl can be whoever she wants when she finds the right wig.

This is a catchier version of moment like this that won leona lewis the X Factor in 2006 – these girls aren’t just funny, they’re talented bitches.

‘6/10’ – Dodie

Journalist, Charlie Mathers

Dodie
Dodie

They don’t come cuter than Dodie. The YouTuber and singing sensation is making her name known on the music scene with her beautiful voice. Her songs are always delicate and intimate, just as is 6/10. The song looks at social anxiety. Mental health is a topic she often touches on, going as far as documenting a treatment she underwent for her depersonalization disorder for the BBC.

The singer came out as bisexual in 2015. She grew up having girl crushes and just assumed everyone else did too – But later learned that wasn’t the case. In 2014, Dodie released She, a song about an unrequited crush she had on a friend of hers. Ever since coming out, Dodie has been unapologetic about her sexuality, even lighting up the stage with the bi pride flag colors at a recent gig in London.