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LGBTQ Songs to Add to Your Pride Playlist

Music has always been an essential part of the LGBTQ+ community, serving as a powerful tool for expression, celebration, and resistance. Throughout history, numerous songs have emerged as anthems for the LGBTQ+ movement, resonating with themes of love, freedom, and self-acceptance. As we celebrate Pride, it's the perfect time to revisit some of these iconic tracks and understand why they hold a special place in the hearts of the LGBTQ+ community. Here’s a curated list of LGBTQ+ anthems across various genres that are must-haves for your Pride playlist.

Pop Anthems

1. “Born This Way” by Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" is perhaps one of the most quintessential Pride anthems of the modern era. Released in 2011, this song quickly became a rallying cry for the LGBTQ+ community with its empowering message about embracing one's true self. Gaga's lyrics explicitly celebrate diversity in gender and sexual orientation, making it a staple at Pride events worldwide.

2. “We R Who We R” by Kesha

Kesha's "We R Who We R," released in 2010, is another pop anthem that resonates deeply with the LGBTQ+ community. The song's message of self-empowerment and celebration of individuality makes it a perfect fit for any Pride playlist. Kesha's unapologetic attitude and infectious energy in this track encourage listeners to embrace their authentic selves.

Dance and Electronic Hits

3. “Go West” by Pet Shop Boys

"Go West" by Pet Shop Boys, released in 1993, is a classic dance anthem with a deep connection to the LGBTQ+ community. The song's themes of unity and utopian escape, combined with its catchy melody and uplifting beat, have made it a favorite at Pride celebrations. The Pet Shop Boys' status as gay icons further cements this track as a significant LGBTQ+ anthem.

4. “It's Raining Men” by The Weather Girls

"It's Raining Men" by The Weather Girls, released in 1982, is a timeless dance hit that has become an LGBTQ+ classic. The song's playful lyrics and exuberant energy have made it a beloved track within the community. Its frequent play at Pride events and LGBTQ+ clubs underscores its status as an anthem of joy and celebration.

Rock Anthems

5. “Freedom! ’90” by George Michael

George Michael's "Freedom! ’90," released in 1990, is a rock anthem that resonates with themes of liberation and self-expression. As an openly gay artist, Michael's music often spoke to the struggles and triumphs of the LGBTQ+ community. "Freedom! ’90" reflects his desire to break free from industry expectations and embrace his true identity, making it a powerful anthem for Pride.

6. “True Colors” by Cyndi Lauper

"True Colors" by Cyndi Lauper, released in 1986, is a heartfelt rock ballad that has become an enduring LGBTQ+ anthem. Lauper's poignant lyrics about showing one's true self and the song's emotional depth have made it a source of comfort and inspiration for many in the LGBTQ+ community. Lauper's advocacy for LGBTQ+ rights further amplifies the song's significance.

Hip-Hop and R&B Anthems

7. “Make Me Feel” by Janelle Monáe

Janelle Monáe's "Make Me Feel," released in 2018, is an electrifying blend of R&B and funk that celebrates sexual fluidity and queer love. The song's vibrant sound and Monáe's unapologetic expression of her bisexuality make it a powerful anthem for the LGBTQ+ community. Its inclusion in Pride playlists highlights its role in promoting visibility and acceptance of diverse sexual orientations.

8. “Vogue” by Madonna

Madonna's "Vogue," released in 1990, is an iconic dance-pop track that pays homage to the voguing culture of the LGBTQ+ ballroom scene. The song's celebration of self-expression and fashion, combined with its infectious beat, has made it a staple at Pride events. "Vogue" not only popularized voguing but also brought mainstream attention to the LGBTQ+ subculture.

Country Anthems

1. "Follow Your Arrow" by Kacey Musgraves

Kacey Musgraves' "Follow Your Arrow," released in 2013, is a country anthem that encourages listeners to live authentically and embrace who they are. The song's lyrics, "Kiss lots of boys, or kiss lots of girls if that's something you're into," openly acknowledge and celebrate diverse sexual orientations, making it a beloved track within the LGBTQ+ community.

2. "Younger Me" by Brothers Osborne

Brothers Osborne's "Younger Me," released in 2021, is a deeply personal song that reflects on the challenges faced by TJ Osborne as a young gay man. The song's poignant lyrics and heartfelt delivery resonate with anyone who has struggled with acceptance and self-love, making it an empowering addition to any Pride playlist.

Indie and Alternative Anthems

9. “Girls Like Girls” by Hayley Kiyoko

Hayley Kiyoko's "Girls Like Girls," released in 2015, is an indie pop anthem that has resonated with many young LGBTQ+ individuals. Dubbed "Lesbian Jesus" by her fans, Kiyoko's music often explores themes of same-sex love and acceptance. "Girls Like Girls" is celebrated for its straightforward depiction of queer relationships, making it an empowering anthem for LGBTQ+ youth.

10. “She Keeps Me Warm” by Mary Lambert

Mary Lambert's "She Keeps Me Warm," released in 2013, is a beautiful indie ballad that stems from her collaboration on Macklemore and Ryan Lewis's "Same Love." The song offers a tender and honest portrayal of a same-sex relationship, highlighting the importance of love and acceptance. Lambert's heartfelt lyrics and soothing melody make it a touching anthem for the LGBTQ+ community.

Classic Anthems

11. “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor

"I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor, released in 1978, is a disco classic that has long been embraced by the LGBTQ+ community. The song's themes of resilience and empowerment resonate deeply with many who have faced discrimination and adversity. Its enduring popularity at Pride events and LGBTQ+ gatherings underscores its status as a timeless anthem of strength.

12. “YMCA” by Village People

"YMCA" by Village People, released in 1978, is another disco hit that has become an iconic LGBTQ+ anthem. The song's playful lyrics and danceable beat celebrate the freedom and camaraderie found in LGBTQ+ spaces. Its widespread popularity and association with fun and inclusivity make it a must-have for any Pride playlist.

Recent Anthems

13. “Rain on Me” by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande

"Rain on Me," released in 2020, is a collaboration between Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande that has quickly become a modern Pride anthem. The song's message of resilience and overcoming adversity, coupled with its high-energy beat, makes it a favorite at Pride celebrations. Both artists' strong support for the LGBTQ+ community further enhances the song's significance.

14. “Dancing On My Own” by Robyn

Robyn's "Dancing On My Own," released in 2010, is an electro-pop track that has resonated with the LGBTQ+ community for its themes of heartbreak and self-empowerment. The song's danceable rhythm and emotional depth make it a powerful anthem for those who find strength in solitude and self-acceptance.

The songs highlighted above represent a diverse range of genres and eras, each contributing to the rich tapestry of LGBTQ+ anthems. From pop and rock to dance and indie, these tracks celebrate love, resilience, and the beauty of being true to oneself. As we continue to celebrate Pride, these anthems serve as powerful reminders of the progress made and the journey ahead in the fight for equality and acceptance.

Adding these iconic songs to your Pride playlist not only ensures a fantastic soundtrack for your celebrations but also honors the contributions of artists who have used their music to uplift and empower the LGBTQ+ community. So turn up the volume, embrace the spirit of Pride, and let these anthems inspire you to live your truth with pride and joy.

No list is every complete or meet's everybody's go to song, and as Left of Str8 Podcasts get's ready for our 2500 mile Roadtrip to Palm Springs, let us know YOUR Go-To songs for pride and enjoyment.

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