It’s more important than ever to use this Pride Month as a reminder to continue to amplify and support black queer artists. Pride was founded on radical protest against violent state repression, so no, pride cannot wait. Black Trans Women and people of color led the change at Stonewall in 1969. There is no queer liberation without black lives.
This month, I’m re-launching the Queer Necessities playlist all on my own. When I started this playlist over two years ago with Billboard Pride my mission as a curator was always to make sure we were championing the latest releases from BIPOC musicians. My job with Billboard ended in May. My promise and commitment to queer musicians everywhere did not.
Music has been used for a long time to bring us joy and healing in difficult times like this and that is why I’m still sharing this playlist with you and highlighting some of the best new music from Black queer artists alongside their contemporaries and allies.
Over the next few days I will be spotlighting the black queer musicians featured on this month’s playlist individually in my Instagram stories, beginning with cover star Keiynan Lonsdale – three of his songs are featured in celebration of the release of his debut album, Rainbow Boy.
“I wrote the album when I realized Queer love was the ultimate freedom,” Keiynan told Jon ALi in a statement. “I hope you dance and feel yourself like never before, you deserve it baby.”
This month’s selections also include Shea Diamond, VINCINT, Bronze Avery, Siena Liggins, Mila Jam, Tafari Anthony, Tayla Parx, Blimes and Gab, Desiire, Gattison, Cakes da Killa, Madison Rose, Tokeyo, Damez, Furillostar, serpentwithfeet, Joy Oladokun, and much more.
I hope you make some new discoveries and find some musical medicine with this playlist. Continue to support these artists and the movement ✊🏾 BLACK LIVES MATTER.