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Queer Necessities: Jon ALi’s February 2021 Playlist, Featuring DESIIRE & More!

It’s about that time to refresh Queer Necessities, my monthly LGBTQ-focused playlist where I catch you up on the latest releases by rising queer talent and fierce allies.

The cover star this month is DESIIRE, a Toronto based singer-songwriter who has been delivering a unique blend of R&B, Afro, Electronic and Hip-Hop over the past three years. I haven’t properly written about DESIIRE yet, although he’s been included on at least two editions of Queer Necessities before.

That changes this month with the release of his latest single “Starlight,” a slick and sensual gem armed with dreamy textures, inviting melodies and a slow-burning sparkle throughout.

“With ‘Starlight,’ I really wanted to create a song that felt nostalgic but still kept modern elements and grooves throughout the track. I am Congolese and I think a lot of disco/pop/80’s African music often gets overlooked,” DESIIRE told Jon Ali in a statement. “The sounds of that era influences a lot of the western musicians with samples and melodies, so I wanted to take that power back as an African Queer artist in 2021 and embody it. It’s been a heavy year for everyone around the world and I wanted to keep the positive vibes going and bring some light to our lives right now because god knows we all need it! French is my first language and I’ve only sang in English so far so I wanted to go back to my roots and inject some french lyrics at the end of the song to continue the nostalgic romantic vibes!”

What else can we expect from DESIIRE in 2021? “More music, more visuals, more storytelling, more of everything,” he added. “There isn’t a lot of Queer representation in the African and R&B music scene both at home (Africa) and overseas so i’d love to be able to bridge the gap between Queer culture and R&B-AfroPop spaces through song, art and fashion.”

There’s plenty more where “Starlight” came from so get familiar with his name now if you haven’t already! This month’s selections also include new singles from John Duff, Vetta Borne, Tom Aspaul, Rebecca Black, That Kid, Isaac Dunbar, Michael Love Michael, Rubby, Roney X, Victoria Monét and more!

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