As inherently political conversations about resistance, rights, and representation continue to grow and emerge, PAPER, like many of you, can't help but find ways to usher these vital discussions forward. Forget what you've heard: despite discrimination, laws, and even violence, we believe it's always a great day to be lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, an ally.
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Below, we present a range of 50 powerful musicians changing the industry at large, some with mainstream clout, but all are people innovating within their chosen genres and communities. All artists show tangible proof that visibility (hell, mere existence) in all spaces normalizes narratives and experiences for all LGBTQ people. It's joyful, it's good, and these people are all changing our world.
Click through our picks for LGBTQ musicians you absolutely should prioritize.
Make no mistake, Brazilian drag performer and gender-neutral (he, she, or they all work) pop star Pabllo Vittar is an icon. Vittar broke through to the public consciousness with unforgettable televised performances of Whitney Houston songs sung live, and further proved their star power with the release of last year's Vai Passar Mal. And they've already been endorsed via musical collaborations with LGBTQ community allies ranging from Charli XCX to Diplo (who they shared a kiss with in the "Entao Vai" video; later telling us how Diplo's lips taste like jambo, a sweet Brazilian fruit). Vittar shows no signs of slowing down, and is currently at work on a follow-up album. — Michael Love Michael (Photography: Fernanda Tiné for PAPER)
Story by Michael Love Michael, Jael Goldfine, Justin Moran