“Living out loud” has never been a problem for the multi-talented Janelle Monae. A Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter, respected actress, dancer, fashionista activist, philanthropist, and more, the 33-year-old’s donned many hats in her storied career. And, if a recent interview with ‘Them’ magazine is any indication, there are no signs of slowing.
Dishing on her ‘coming out story,’ the pressures of balancing fame with being openly queer, and the fight for equality more with the LGBTQ+ publication, the ‘Dirty Computer’ diva gave fans an inside view of her life since making the decision that’s changed it forever.
Interviewed by burgeoning songstress (and LGBTQ+ rights advocate) Lizzo, look inside to read some buzzworthy quotes and see the stunning photos that accompanied the feature:
For me, sexuality and sexual identity and fluidity is a journey. It’s not a destination. I’ve discovered so much about myself over the years as I’ve evolved and grown and spent time with myself and loved ones.
I mean, to be young, queer, and black in America means that you can be misunderstood. You can be hated. It also means that you can be celebrated and loved. And I think there’s a lot at stake when you’re living out loud in that way.
I thought people were gonna say, “Oh, she’s doing this as a publicity stunt.” I thought I wasn’t gonna be able to go back home and be at all the barbecues. I had anxiety. And a lot of it was just untrue. It was my fear of what people were gonna say. And I’m thankful that I didn’t allow that fear to get in the way of my freedom.
The entertainment industry has not caught up. We’re making some waves, but we can do better. And again, it’s about normalizing and telling more stories, and inviting more LGBTQIA+ folks into the conversation on the front end, and giving us a seat at the table early on. Because we can’t afford to see things in a binary way. That’s not how the world works.
I’m honored to be a part of Time’s Up and support women. And that’s inclusive of all women. As a black woman, however, that’s what I know and that’s the lens that I’m looking at things through. Whether it be behind the scenes, producing and engineering, to writing or being in front of the camera, there’s a lot more work that needs to be done.
Click here to read the feature in full.