Queer/Race

Not for the gays? Thank you for your honesty Rihanna. Seriously.

Posted in Uncategorized by teddytaylor on May 6, 2010

This is kind of in response to my previous post about Pop Diva’s and the queer community…and yeah, sorry guys but I just really love Top 40.

For those who haven’t heard this song you probably will in the next couple of months because I think it’s going to be her next single.  She’s been filming the music video (which might have to lead to another debate depending on how it turns out).  This is another example of the Pop Diva and her involvement with the queer community.  HOWEVER, I don’t have much to debate here because she’s very honest in the song.  Instead I just appreciate the melody and her sincerity.  I would rather have you listen to the song instead of me explaining it.  It’s like a little story.  People take lyrics for granted in pop songs, or maybe just in music in general.  I like the idea that someone stepped outside of the box and was real about something.  It’s like a celebrity acknowledging their gay audience and embracing it, but still being true to themselves (instead of telling the world they’re “bi-curious”).  She isn’t afraid of alienating herself. I’m just kind of surprised Rihanna, of all people, was the one to do it.  I love her now.

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4 Responses

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  1. connvoss said, on May 7, 2010 at 11:11 pm

    I’ve been listening to Rated R (her new album) for some time, and this song has been one of my favorites for a while (due in some part to its placement right after Rude Boy). While I agree that she does a lovely job of creating a song about girl-girl love/tension with large “lesbian” over tones, I would not go so far as to say that in doing so she embraces her gay audience. For me, lines like “I hear the pain in her voice” and “I saw it in her eyes” show respect for the common rejection of homoerotic feelings that many people experience. In terms of creating a mournful song about the disconnect between sexual feelings, by paralleling it with language barrier, she does an excellent job. In truth, her entire production is gay, her fashion is mostly done by New York’s The Blonds, her PR is by MAO, and many of her friends are queer, she is not doing any harm to the gay world in my opinion.

  2. austone said, on May 8, 2010 at 7:45 pm

    Many female pop artists as of recently are including queer themes in their songs and/or are addressing their sexualities in ways that seem very progressive for 2010. I wonder in what way Rihanna wants people to read this song (knowing of the fact that she was in an abusive relationship with a man). While there are lesbian overtones present in this song, Rihanna does not seem interested in the woman the same way the woman is her. She is unsure what “Te Amo” means and I wonder in what way Rihanna’s choice of the phrase “Te amo” has to say about the woman who loves her. Perhaps she is Hispanic, making this an interracial friendship/bond. The queer element might be queered by a racial element if that is the case. If this song is released, I am curious about the ways fans who have not heard “Rated R” (such as myself) will react. Katy Perry’s more raunchy “I Kissed A Girl and I Liked It” seemed welcomed in the Top 40 without much opposition and I’m sure this will as well.

  3. kirstan27 said, on May 8, 2010 at 10:52 pm

    I love this song I was actually very shocked when I heard this on the album. Being from the islands, Barbados to be exact I was shocked that she made a song about a girl that she felt a little temptation from. The West Indies and Caribbeans have a negative image on gays and see homosexuality as disgusting in their culture. So applaud Rhianna for making a great song and not having a homophobic mind frame! Great blog and great topic to talk about. (I just wanted to respond not one of my actual blog responses)

  4. mlhbenz said, on May 8, 2010 at 11:07 pm

    I have been hearing this song on the circle of gay clubs and bars that I frequent for a while now. I remember the first night I heard it was at “Hippo” which is a gay club in Baltimore City. At first it took me a minute to realize who it was than I found myself not being able to resist dancing to the song, I’m sure the alcohol in my system contributed to my lack of inhibitions, but the song was intoxicating to me as well as the majority of women in the bar. When I left I spent the majority of the night trying to find the song and when I did I couldn’t take it off of repeat I thought it was one of the sexiest songs I had heard, I’m not sure if it was the actual song or because it was Rihanna talking about a sexual encounter with a woman. Sadly by the time the CD came out I was over the song but I still find myself smiling when I hear it occasionally.


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