Not enough LGBT+ artists in pop, says star known as Girl in Red


Younger LGBT+ persons are disadvantaged of function fashions as a result of there are usually not sufficient homosexual artists in pop, mentioned Marie Ulven, often known as popstar woman in crimson, who at 21 has grow to be a cult determine amongst younger lesbians and bisexual girls worldwide.

Asking “Do you hearken to woman in crimson?” has grow to be a means for younger LGBT+ girls to attach, significantly on social media app TikTok, the place the Norwegian artist has greater than one million followers.

“Popular culture lacks queer illustration… Once I grew up I missed seeing different queer artists,” Ulven advised the Thomson Reuters Basis in a phone interview from her house in Oslo.

She mentioned she had not anticipated her emotional, guitar-driven songs to grow to be anthems amongst younger LGBT+ folks.

One among her greatest hits “I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend”, which was recorded in Ulven’s bed room, has had greater than 120 million streams on Spotify since 2018.

Whereas acknowledging that her music’s influence amongst LGBT+ folks was “actually cool”, Ulven mentioned she additionally wished her sexual orientation was not a difficulty amongst listeners.

“That additionally has been one thing that’s been irritating… folks, like, gatekeeping my music (and saying) ‘This isn’t for straight folks’.”

“Due to the shortage of queer illustration, plenty of queer folks begin holding queer artists secret. They type of need to treasure you and need to preserve them for themselves,” she mentioned.

Reflecting on LGBT+ artists that had influenced her, Ulven mentioned U.S. popstar Hayley Kiyoko’s 2015 tune “Women Like Women” had been a turning level for understanding her personal id.

“Her music video was so loud, what I imply? It was so easy,” she mentioned.

With touring cancelled as a result of coronavirus pandemic, Ulven has been working with a producer on her first album, which is because of be launched subsequent yr.

Ulven mentioned Covid-19 had affected her psychological well being, describing her expertise of it as a “rollercoaster” that, together with making her album, led her to chop down on social media, together with “poisonous communities” on Twitter and Instagram group chats with followers.

“I’m just a little bit emotionally exhausted,” she mentioned.

Having initially recognized as homosexual, Ulven now prefers to name herself queer, a label as soon as broadly used as an insult however now more and more utilized by LGBT+ folks to explain themselves.

“I do know lots of people say I’m a lesbian, however that’s actually my least favorite phrase in your complete world,” mentioned Ulven, who favours an informal model of costume – dishevelled trousers, outsized hoodies and trainers.

“I’ve by no means felt any stress to put on make-up or to be extra stereotypically female. I’ve by no means felt that stress,” she mentioned.

Relating current controversies round transgender rights, Ulven mentioned she supported trans and non-binary folks, who determine as neither male nor feminine.

“I at all times discover it so bizarre that different folks… have to say something about how different folks select to reside their life,” she mentioned. “It’s none of your small business.”

(This story has been revealed from a wire company feed with out modifications to the textual content. Solely the headline has been modified.)

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